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How Do I Choose the Best Lead Crystal Decanter?

By Solomon Branch
Updated May 17, 2024
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In order to choose the best lead crystal decanter, you need to find one that suits your aesthetic tastes. Quality can be determined by how much the item sparkles and shines, because a higher lead content means the item was more difficult to create and the more it sparkles and shines. A good lead crystal decanter will make a more melodious sound when clinked against other glass or crystal, unlike the thinner sound glass makes. Finding the right lead content and a nice design are the key elements to a good decanter.

The main reason to choose a lead crystal decanter is quality and durability. A well-made decanter will last longer than one made of glass. The designs that can be created with lead crystal by a good artisan are far more intricate than a simple glass decanter, and the sparkle and shine add a pleasant aesthetic appeal.

A good lead crystal decanter will be made of at least 24 percent lead oxide, although it can be up to 33 percent lead oxide in some cases. The lead content will give it more durability than glass or other crystal. A chip or crack is less likely to happen in a crystal lead decanter, which is important because damage to a decanter can affect the taste of the liquid inside it. This is especially true if you are going to use it for alcoholic beverages.

Many styles are available for the decanters and it is also possible to find a variety of antique styles with intricate facets cut carved into the crystal. These designs enhance the sparkle and shine of the decanter. Simpler elegant designs are also available.

Using any products with lead do create some health risk. A lead crystal container will work best for temporary usage. Port, wine, and other alcoholic beverages should not be stored for any length of time in a lead-based decanter. Lead crystal decanters are safe to use for meals because there is not enough time for any lead to leech into the liquid. Any contents leftover should be thrown away or put back into the original bottles.

The best place to find a crystal lead decanter is at a fine crystal maker. Many specialty crystal shops sell them, both online and off. Crystal lead decanters are relatively expensive compared to other materials, but their durability makes them worth it.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

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