Whether you’re drinking alone, with friends or at a social gathering, pouring the best whiskey from a decanter automatically brings a certain level of class to the occasion. Pouring a whiskey on the rocks from your personal bar will make you feel like you’ve stepped straight out of a Mad Men episode, though we don’t recommend drinking on the job. So if you’re a whiskey drinker and want to take your drinking experience to the next level, it’s definitely time to invest in one of the best whiskey decanters.
Of course, even though whiskey decanters are supposed to offer a touch of class to your home bar, a lot of the whiskey decanters for sale online are incredibly tacky. When you need a vessel to hold your finest barrel-aged bourbon, you don’t want any old cheap glass bottle. Because we love whiskey, we’re always on the lookout for the finest whiskey decanters and sets.
What To Look For When Shopping for Whiskey Decanters
Pouring whiskey neat from a decanter is quite simply the finest way to drink whiskey. Sure, you might love your whiskey flask when it’s time to sneak a sip on the go, but a decanter offers a sophisticated way to store and display your finest top-shelf rye whiskey or Scotch.
It should be noted that, unlike wine decanters, the best whiskey decanters don’t really offer any benefit physically or taste-wise. Generally speaking, as whiskey has very few tannins and a high alcohol content, it’s ready to go right out of the bottle. Once you’ve added it to your bar cart, it doesn’t need to age or breathe. Whiskey decanters are really just about the visual appeal. But as anyone whose been to a fine restaurant or high-end bar knows, presentation matters and a stylish whiskey decanter can make your bottle of Four Roses yellow label feel like Pappy Van Winkle.
When shopping for a whiskey decanter, there are a few factors to consider. Decanters are available in different kinds of glass. Crystal is a luxurious option because it can be made very thin, giving it a fine but durable finish. Crystal is also more transparent, reflecting light in an attractive way. It is more expensive, however, and some concerns have been expressed over the lead content of some crystal (though many crystal glasses today are made lead-free). If the glass isn’t labeled as crystal, it’s likely soda-lime, which is the most common type of glass.
Below, you’ll find plenty of options if you’re in the market for classically-shaped decanters, from standalone options to personalized decanters and whiskey drinking sets. Plus, we’ve also included a handful of more unusual, eye-catching options, including skull decanters, diamond-shaped and globe-shaped choices, which are ideal as a unique gift for whiskey-loving friends and family.
1. Crate & Barrel Hatch Decanter
Crate & Barrel is one of the best places to shop for barware. Their drinkware offerings are stylish and reasonably priced, and best of all, they’re sold individually. That means you can mix and match or assemble your own sets. This decanter is part of Crate & Barrel’s Hatch set, so if you want everything to match, you can pick up rocks glasses, mixing glasses, highball glasses and even shot glasses. The Hatch decanter has a stylish textured design that nods to classic barware but has a modern look. The textured design also has the added benefit of making the decanter easier to hold.
2. Marquis By Waterford Markham Square Decanter
Waterford is the crystal glassware brand that’s a household name, and the brand makes some of the most recognizable and attractive crystal glasses, including this decanter set that includes two matching glasses. The decanter holds 30 ounces, while each double old-fashioned glass holds 11 ounces.
3. West Elm Crystal Glass Whiskey Decanter
BEST CRYSTAL OPTION
Crystal glass is the height of luxury for drinkware, but it’s typically pretty expensive. West Elm’s crystal glass decanter is about the same price as some of the glass options on this list. It has a distinctive yet sophisticated triangular design that tapers near the top.
4. World Market Hugh Narrow Glass Decanter
Since you don’t technically need a decanter, you might not want to spend too much on it. In that case, pick up this stylish option from World Market, which has a simple rounded design and includes a stopper. The decanter has a 32 oz capacity, which is more than enough for a single 750ml bottle of whiskey. The affordable price and simple design make it a great housewarming gift.
5. CB2 Stud Decanter
Like its parent company Crate & Barrel, CB2 is a great place to shop for glasses and other barware. This decanter has a striking studded design with a narrow base and a tall height, saving space on your bar cart. The studded design will also catch light in an attractive way. It’s made from regular soda lime glass.
6. Nude Crystal Whiskey Decanter
If you’re looking for a truly luxurious option, consider this pick from Nude, which has a heavy base and a stout, modern design. The dimpled top mirrors the indentation on the bottom of the decanter, nodding to the punt on the bottom of many wine and whiskey bottles. The decanter has a large 42 oz capacity.
7. Godinger Radius Decanter
This effortlessly elegant pick is high on style but low on price. It has a classic grid texture and is made from crystal glass. Godinger also offers a set that includes matching glasses. It has a substantial heft when you pick it up, adding to its luxurious appeal.
8. IKEA SÄLLSKAPLIG Carafe
Though it’s marketed as a carafe, this option from Ikea would make a great decanter. It has a 30-ounce capacity, meaning it can hold a full bottle of whiskey with a few ounces to spare. Like most whiskey decanters, it has a glass stopper. The textured design adds an attractive touch. Of course, since it’s Ikea, this is one of the most affordable options on the list.
9. Pottery Barn Glass Skull Decanter
If you have a flair for the dramatic, consider this skull decanter from Pottery Barn. The decanter itself isn’t shaped like a skull, but it has a glass skull at the bottom, which is arguably spookier. The decanter has a glass stopper lid (to keep the spirits inside) and a capacity of 44 oz.
10. Whiskey Peaks Mountain Decanters
Whiskey and the outdoors kind of go hand-in-hand, so we’re not surprised this decanter exists for the rough and tumble kind of guy who loves spending time in the outdoors. From hikes to chopping wood to sitting inside afterward relaxing by the fireplace, this is the decanter you’ll want to grab if the outdoors is your favorite spot to be.
11. Regal Trunk Whiskey Decanter Set
The Regal Trunk & Co Elegant Five-Piece Whiskey Decanter is worthy of use at any celebration or social gathering. This complete decanter set comes with four whiskey glasses and a stylish, lead-free glass decanter. The thick glass has deep etching, giving it a distinctive look and style. Even the presentation box that this set comes in screams class. This decanter set is sure to catch the eye of all your guests and makes a great gift idea you know the recipient will love.