Sep 8, 2022
How Long Can Whiskey Last In A Decanter?
How Long Does Whiskey Last When Placed In A Decanter? The shelf life of whiskey stored in a lead-free decanter can range anywhere from two months to three years, depending on the amount of alcohol that is contained within the decanter. Alterations in temperature, humidity, and light levels, as well as the presence or absence of an airtight seal on the decanter, are some of the other elements that can extend the whiskey’s shelf life in the decanter.
Is it good to decant whiskey?
Don’t Miss A Drop will send you updates on the newest happenings in the world of beer, wine, and cocktail culture directly to your email inbox. Whiskey, on the other hand, won’t actually alter all that much when it’s exposed to oxygen—at least, not in terms of the exposure it’ll get when it’s poured into another container and/or when a whiskey decanter has a somewhat less airtight cover than other containers (vs.
the bottle cap). Although it will oxidize, whiskey stored in a bottle with a large amount of air (like the one you’ve been drinking from, you rascal) will do so much more slowly than wine. Once the whiskey has been bottled, it is considered a finished product, according to the Scotch Whisky Association, which is an organization that we can safely presume is not to be trifled with.
In general, however, this is not the case. “Even if you store a bottle of whiskey that is 12 years old for another 100 years, it will still be considered 12 years old.” Tannins and alcohol concentration are the two primary contributors to wine’s evolution, but whiskey’s consistency is mostly unaffected by these two variables.
- The tannin concentration of wine is significantly higher than that of whiskey (naturally occurring in the grape, borrowed from the barrel, etc.).
- Whiskey does not contain any tannins naturally and receives just a trace amount of tannins from the barrel in which it is aged.
- Why are tannins even important? They have the potential to alter the flavor of a bottle of wine over time, either for the better or for the worse.
Something that is too brutally tannic right now could smooth out over the course of a few years, so be patient and try other wines that are more approachable in the meanwhile. Because whiskey has so few tannins, there is not much of a possibility for big flavor changes to occur over time.
This is perfectly acceptable, as a completed whiskey should taste the same forever, or at least for as long as it remains in your liquor cabinet. The amount of alcohol is more crucial than the tannins. While the alcohol by volume content of wines can range anywhere from 11 to 15% (and sometimes higher), the vast majority of whiskeys are bottled at a minimum of 40% ABV (or even more if they are “cask strength”).
How Long Can You Leave Alcohol in a Crystal Decanter?
That indicates two things: the first is that you should drink your whiskey much more slowly, and the second is that you need not bother about putting it into (or out of) a decanter. Because of the large percentage of alcohol present, the likelihood of a significant chemical reaction resulting from oxidation is significantly reduced.
It’s not entirely unheard of for whiskey to undergo some sort of transformation over the course of its lifetime, particularly if it’s been stored in an environment that’s been subjected to sunlight (since this will speed up any chemical reactions that might take place) or temperature fluctuations (which can cause the whiskey to become cloudy, but don’t worry about it; this is perfectly normal).
And some drinkers are of the belief that the first dram of whiskey tastes different from the remainder of the bottle; however, this might also be a result of palate acclimatization, given that whiskey (of any sort) does not so much prance as slam dance onto your tongue.
- Take a look at the decanter if you are still unsure of what to do.
- Wine decanters are usually sold without a lid and always have an intricate design that makes them extremely fragile.
- This is done on purpose to promote the interaction between the liquid and the air in the decanter.
- On the other hand, whiskey decanters are typically constructed for stability (sometimes with a broad bottom), as well as for the sake of straight-up gleaming impressiveness.
In whiskey decanters, air is not an issue since, given a fair amount of time, it will not make much of a change in the whiskey’s flavor. Because of this, a whiskey decanter will always have a cap on it, which is the large bulbous piece of glass that our businessman replaces after pouring himself some Scotch.
- Then, what is the point of it all? Aesthetics.
- Historically, decanters were used to draw whiskey from barrels, but in modern times, their primary purpose is to look good.
- Decanters come in a wide variety of styles, from the traditional broad-shouldered and wide-bottomed design to something that would look right at home on the massive mahogany desk of a Bond villain.
Whether you decant the whiskey or not is entirely up to you as long as you do not intend to store it for an extended period of time (in which case you would simply leave it in the bottle). Just be sure that it isn’t a decanter made of lead crystal. They may be more sparkly, but the price you pay for that shine may be lead seeping into your whiskey (it will take some time, but it will happen).