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"WineAir" is a spray can for just under eight euros that contains the noble gas argon. Wine fans spray it into the opened bottle and can now store the wine for "weeks", the manufacturer promises. We tested how well it works under everyday conditions.

"Can be used anywhere, you can take it with you, to a picnic or to a party," advertise the "WeinLuft" founders Matthias Tonesz and Dr Thomas Kremser (photo left) for their reinvention of a useful but hitherto little-known idea. That's right: The small spray can, about the size of a mini deodorant, is uncomplicated to use as well as requiring no instructions for use. The noble gas argon in it is heavier than air. If you spray it into an opened wine bottle, it covers the surface of the liquid like a blanket. Argon does not react with other substances and is thus supposed to protect the wine from oxidation. Preserving with argon is - according to the current state of science - the ideal way to preserve wine. Some wine fans have long been familiar with the principle: spray cans have been available for years, but until now they have been used almost exclusively by wine merchants and bar operators. It was "Coravin" by the American inventor Gregg Lambrecht that opened the way for argon to private wine connoisseurs. The only difference is that the gas is sprayed into the bottle through the cork with an injection needle, which remains intact - and the bottle is sealed. However, the device is quite expensive. "WineAir" works in a similar way. However, the wine bottle is opened normally and is not supposed to be stored in a dark cellar for years afterwards, like the precious wines from the Coravin advertisements. "WineAir" promises to keep opened bottles fresh for a few days - or even weeks - until they are drunk.

How do you use "WineAir"?

A tube is rolled into the cap of the can. You put one end of it on the nozzle, the other as far as possible into the bottle without dipping it into the wine. Then you press the trigger for about a second, take the tube out again and put a cap on it that is as neutral as possible. A standard silicone stopper works best for this instead of the original pierced cork. Afterwards, the bottle should be put in the fridge. According to the manufacturer, the small spray can is sufficient for "up to 15 bottles". In our test, however, it was already empty after nine bottles.

How did we test?

The only question is how well it works. Scientifically, the effect of the noble gas in the bottle is very difficult to measure, so we decided to test it under normal conditions in the everyday life of wine fans. It was to be a tough practical test. We tasted several very different wines. Sometimes there was only a little left in the bottle, in other tests only one or two glasses were missing. Some wines we tasted again a few days after opening. Others we let wait up to three weeks. The bottles were left open for two to three hours each before spraying with argon, as might happen after a dinner. We kept the rest in the bottle in the fridge - or just on the kitchen worktop. Of course: the chances of survival of an opened bottle are much better when it is cooled. But we wanted to find out whether "WineAir" actually hermetically seals the wine. Because an original corked bottle that is not too mature does not lose quality even after three weeks at room temperature. In the second tasting, we compared the wines, as far as possible, with an identical bottle that we had freshly opened for this purpose.

Long-term test: up to three weeks under the argon layer

Different results came out of the various tests. A long weekend in the fridge - from Thursday to Sunday - all wines from the sensitive young Silvaner to the robust Bordeaux survived completely unscathed. But they would usually do that even without argon gas. It only got exciting a few days later.

The first test object in the long-term study: the white wine 2020 "Canorei" from Piedmont. After opening the bottle, the Roero Arneis from Tenuta Carretta shows ripe citrus fruits like lemon and grapefruit, behind it fresh almonds, a good structure especially on the middle palate with crisp acidity. The remaining quarter of the Riserva was in the fridge for five days. Compared to the second bottle, the fine floral aromas as well as the white peach faded somewhat. But everything else remained of excellent quality: expressive as the moment we opened the bottle, lots of tension due to the driving acidity, subtle citrus aromas, fine minerality. Wow.

Not quite as well, half a bottle of 2019 Esterházy Blaufränkisch Sankt Georgen survived a 16-day wait on the kitchen counter. The lime tones from the Leithaberg and the dark berries taste quite washed out now, but are still present. After such a long time without refrigeration, the wine is still drinkable and quite good.

The grape variety Xinistery, here a 2017 Aes Amelis, is the best known white variety in Cyprus, you know it from the sweet Commandarias. Dry versions like this 2017 often taste uncomplicatedly lemony. The barrique ageing provides noticeable woodiness, plus ripeness. Both are well supported by the acidity of the variety. After eight days in the fridge, there are no tangible losses when tasting the wine again. The citrus freshness is still there, the wine is as present as on the first day. That is surprisingly good.

Nero d'Avola is the best-known variety in Sicily. The 2018 "Carthago" from Mandarossa falls into the category of "very decent drinking wine" for us. No trace of the bitter tones of black olives, instead ripe plum and some dark chocolate. With relatively much alcohol and tannin, the wine is quite storable. The bottle, emptied by two-thirds, remains in the kitchen without refrigeration for 14 days. When testing with the nose, we did not need to open the reference bottle. The wine in the glass is slightly brown at the rim and has very distinct oxidation tones of mushy onion peel on the nose. You can taste that too - or better leave it alone. This wine has had it.

The same diagnosis follows with Olivier Costes Carignan organic wine 2020 "Je t'aime". A rather simple, but not bad drinking wine. The bottle remained quarter-full on the kitchen counter for three weeks. The wine is gone, stinking of hazelnut shells and rotten onions. Clearly, without refrigeration the system has reached its limits. A simple wine and only one residue in the bottle - not much can be saved even with "wine air".

Top fresh after twelve days without refrigeration

Stylistically, the 2020 Limniona from Oenops Wines in Drama (Greece) is the antithesis of these two wines. This trendy, light red gives the impression that it won't last long in the bottle. It has a brisk acidity, but little tannin. Such lightweights, with fragile floral aromas, lose quality very quickly. Surprisingly, the half-full bottle is as fresh as a daisy after twelve days without refrigeration. fragrant with notes of liquorice, violets and flowers - just like on the first day.

The next candidate is again from Tenuta Carretta. It is the 2018 Bric Paradiso, a modern Nebbiolo Riserva. The variety represents the epitome of ageing: classic Barolo and Barbaresco take forever for their tannins to mature. Nevertheless, the wines tend to be lean, sparse, but profound, like the Bric Paradiso here also with classic Nebbiolo aromas of old cupboard, dust and the very finest berry fruits. After nine days at room temperature, the wine has lost virtually none of its magic in the two-thirds full bottle under the argon layer.

Frescobaldi's 2012 Castel Giocondo is the last test candidate. A good ten years is not a bad age for a Brunello di Montalcino. The fill level is impeccable - and the wine tastes heavenly. Lots of Sangiovese fruit like cherry and black berries, plus a silky texture. The tannins are mild and flattering, the acidity soft, the secondary aromas elegant. It could continue to mature for years. In the air, however, you always have to reckon with even such drops falling off quickly. That's why it's particularly exciting to see how the air seal works. After nine days in the fr idge, we couldn't stand waiting any longer. However, we didn't have a second bottle. And we didn't need to: the Castel Giocondo had lost none of its quality, in all its complexity it is still the great Brunello from the day it was opened.

Good wines store the longest

Our test proves it: Hermetically, the argon gas does not usually seal the wine surface. But it keeps most wines fresh for one, sometimes even more than two weeks. So if you drink your opened bottle of wine after a week, you are on the safe side with "WineAir". If you drink wine only occasionally and forget the rest in the fridge, you can save the money for the spray can. But the test shows: Not all wines can be stored equally well. "Silvaner is difficult," Susanne Spies, sommelière at the Michelin-starred restaurant of German TV chef Frank Rosin, has found, "but a Lagrein from South Tyrol keeps surprisingly long." She can "easily serve" opened bottles even after the rest day, she confirms her daily experience, "but after a week I would use them up."

It is difficult to predict which bottle will last how long. But some factors can be discerned: Wines from overripe harvest material with high yields and heavily pressed grapes don't get better through storage anyway - and also spoil faster with "WeinLuft". Acidity, on the other hand, preserves just as well as sweetness, but you have to want to have both in the glass. But even here, overripe fruit with flavours of cherry liqueur and rum pot quickly tips away. Phenolically ripe grapes that have been processed cleanly by hand, however, always have a good chance of surviving for a long time under the Argon cover. Sometimes even a simple Vinho Verde still tastes good after an astonishingly long time, but a luxurious Chardonnay from Burgundy can at best still be good for cooking after a week. If you don't forget the bottle you started in the fridge, however, you will rarely experience bad surprises.

However, the mini spray cans, which are disposed of via the "Green Dot", should not be the last word for the manufacturer. Mobile use is not important, at least for us: who would take a half-empty bottle of wine home from a party to store it in the fridge for a week afterwards? And it works better than the can price of 7.99 euros, which is enough for about ten bottles. Matthias Tonesz from "WeinLuft" marketing also confirms this: "We want to start with 500 millilitre cans by the end of 2023. They are not that much more expensive - and last for 100 bottles and more." That's a good outlook.


"WeinLuft" preserves wine, definitely for some time in the refrigerator and often - with restrictions - without refrigeration. In both cases, many but not all wines survive longer than a week. After 14 days, the chances of enjoying many wines decline rapidly. The manufacturer's recommendation of "weeks" should therefore not be pushed to the limit. Larger cans would also make sense in everyday life.

  • Advantages +

    + Inexpensive
    + Small
    + Uncomplicated to use
    + Works well in everyday life without performing miracles
  • Disadvantages -

    - Too little content
  • Price-performance


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