Essential Wine Tools for Every Wine Drinker

Essential Wine Tools for Every Wine Drinker

As wine’s popularity has soared across the globe, particularly in the United States and China, so has the market for innovative, and interesting tools. Some of the most useful tools still today are the basics and the classics, but there are some extremely innovative, great tools that have only recently come about. This article will cover some of the basic wine tools that can greatly benefit and add to one’s experience with a bottle.

Great & Useful Tools

Wine Corkscrews

Wine Corkscrews are still a necessary and important tool to have. Unless you solely drink wine from screwtop bottles, then every wine drinker needs a corkscrew of some form. There are a variety of types and styles, and the right one for you depends on a few factors. Between the Waiter’s Corkscrew and the Wing Corkscrew, it all comes down to personal preference. Countertop and electric corkscrews are a different story though.

• The Waiter’s Corkscrew is known for being extremely durable, mobile, and efficient. It likely gets its name due to it commonly being used to open bottles of wine in restaurants and bars. They usually consist of a small blade on the back to cut around the wrapping, and then they open up for the corkscrew to be pulled out. They also have notches at the end that allow for leverage on the bottle, and this makes the bottle opening process incredibly simple and efficient. I personally use Pulltap’s Waiter’s Corkscrew, and I always say that you will have it forever unless it’s lost or stolen.

• The Wing Corkscrew is a great option as well, especially for casual use at home. This one requires a similar amount of effort as the Waiter’s Corkscrew but in a different way. It works by twisting the screw into the cork, and as it goes in, the wings on the side come up. When they are all the way up, you simply push them back down, and they lift the cork out. It is simple, efficient, and a quality wine tool. Any number of good-quality wing corkscrews can be found at your local grocery, wine, or home goods shop. A common plus to these is that these can often serve non-wine drinkers, as they tend to have bottle openers on top.

• Electric Wine Openers are extremely easy to use and very efficient. These are great for casual wine drinkers that want their bottles opened as easily and quickly as possible. The primary downside here is these tend to be slightly more pricey than the Waiters and Wing corkscrew, though they can be well worth the investment. You simply put the mechanism over the bottle and it’s opened at the push of a button. For the best combination of quality and affordability, we recommend the Oster Metallic wine opener.

Wine Aeration

Aerating wine, particularly for high tannin reds, is key to fully enjoying and appreciating the bottle. This isn’t to ignore lower tannin reds and white wine, as they can benefit from it as well. There are a handful of ways to go about aeration depending on your patience, preference, and the occasion. The big three include decanters, an aerator, or simply letting it open up in the glass. They all have their time and place.

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Decanters are one of the most common and easiest ways to decant wine. It works by pouring wine into the decanter and letting it sit for however long you deem fit. This length of time will vary by wine and other factors such as the grape, region, and style. The waiting aspect is a drawback and plus at the same time. While you do have to wait anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours, it is much faster than letting it open up in the bottle and glass. You also get to taste the wine over a longer period of time as it slowly changes, so you can pick up on more of the nuances and fun. Decanters also serve the purpose of separating sediment in wines that can build up over time.

Aerators have become extremely popular and accessible in recent years. They are usually a simple attachment that goes into the end of the bottle and pour through. These speed up the process of aeration even faster than decanters. Aerators are very useful if it’s a last-minute bottle, your decanters are dirty, or you’re just in a lazy mood. Some people caution that aerators can do their job too well sometimes and that they can take away from the experience of drinking wine as it slowly opens up. They are great for heavy tannic reds and many others if done correctly. The Pampered Chef wine aerator has worked wonders for me, especially on Dungeons and Dragons nights when I’m less patient.

Wine Preservation

• Wine Stoppers are great to have on hand and are extremely important. Many of us have a tendency to break the cork halfway through pulling it out. This can pose a problem if someone decides they want to save some for the next day, and you don’t have any wine stoppers, other similar sized corks, or anything else to plug the bottle. A pack of a few wine stoppers can be bought online for as little as a few dollars. While these won’t preserve wine any longer than putting the cork back in, they are a great back up when the cork ends up breaking or crumbling. Nicer and better wine stoppers can also be bought and will save wine even longer than putting the cork back in typically will.

• Wine Pumps are another great method for preserving wine longer. They work by placing the mechanism over the wine and pulling the majority of the oxygen out of the bottle. It is tried and true and can preserve a wine relatively well up to a week or two. This method is particularly great, because alongside being effective, it can also be very affordable compared to other preservation systems such as the Coravin. One of the most popular wine pumps is the Vacu Vin Wine Saver. It costs under $15 and has consistently received great reviews over the years.

• The Coravin is a fairly new tool, though it is very innovative and helpful. The Coravin works by inserting a tiny needle into the cork and pouring from there. The needle is so small that the cork can reseal itself. To combat oxygen that could normally come in as its being poured, the Coravin simultaneously fills the emptied part of the bottle with a harmless preserving gas. This device prides itself on being able to preserve wine for at least a month and often longer. The main drawback is the price, as the cheapest model starts at $99 and the most expensive rounding out at $500. The Coravin is great for restaurants wanting to serve nicer bottles by the glass or anyone wanting to make a worthwhile investment.

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