The concern is that lead is used in the making of crystal, and that lead potentially can, over time, leach out of the glass into the liquid stored in it.
Higher alcohol=more lead pulled into the drink. Now I’m no scientist, but I do have eyes and can observe, and many people for many years seem to have gotten away with it with no ill effects, so I’d say go for it.
Just don’t use crystal for long-term storage of alcoholic beverages and I’d guess you should be fine. Another option is to buy lead-free crystal. RuixinGlass makes affordable, durable, beautiful stuff. Enjoy!
The issue is lead. The dangers of lead crystal are easy to overstate, but they are not non-existent.
For adults (who are all we should be speaking of, of course) the best advice I’d give is not to store anything in your decanter long term – no more than a couple hours (lead begins leeching into wine or whiskey almost immediately) – and don’t use it too often.
I would seriously look into getting some lead-free crystal glassware and using that instead. Keep the lead crystal decanter, but only bring it out for really special occasions.
A lot of modern lead crystal decanters are lined with an inert coating to prevent the issue of lead leaching into the spirit. However, unless you can be sure yours has this I wouldn’t risk it.
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