An aerator's purpose is to expand the surface area of wine, which allows the air to mingle with it. Aerators force air to be circulated throughout it, the end result is a wine with an expanded aromatic profile and/or softer tannins.
A handy aerator will easily do the trick in minutes. A Vinturi Wine Aerator for example, is held above your glass while you pour wine through the top of the aerator. As the wine flows through the aerator, it "breathes" as bubbles are sent through it. An aerator is appropriate for casual meals, where time is of the essence.
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