How long before tasting do you open a bottle of Saint-Emilion?
It is well known, oxygenating a wine allows its flavors to fully express themselves.
Beware though, according to its body and the terroir, the wine will not need the same time to reveal all its complexity.
A rather light-bodied or well-structured Saint-Emilion?
If you decide to use a round, fruity and supple enough table wine, no need to open very early. An hour of oxygenation is enough to give its full measure. For more tannic wines more structured, it is advisable to open 3-4 hours before the time for the tannins to round up and aromas to open. This oxygenation is imperative for these wines, which otherwise appear well closed for tasting. In summary: the fruity and airy wines require shorter oxygenation than wines with more material.
Oxygenate based on the terroir
The need for oxygenation is not the same for two wines, even within the same appellation, whether in Saint-Emilion, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, Puisseguin Saint-Emilion and Lussac Saint-Emilion. The specific terroirs indeed play a fundamental role. For example, for the Saint-Emilion wines sandy or gravel terroir will not need to be open more than an hour before consumption. From the start, these wines are fine and elegant. On the contrary, for the wines from the clay-limestone soil plateau, a higher level of aeration is necessary.
The question of aeration of a wine of Saint-Emilion is also closely related to another: should you decant a wine? Everything depends on the age of your wine. Here are our tips to decant, whether for young or aged wines, securely.