What Types Of Wine Openers Are There?
We might be stating the obvious, but there are a multitude of different corkscrews and wine openers out there in the market. Today, we’ll help you weave your way through the maze of utensils that forms an integral part of a wine drinker’s tasting experience.
The Sommelier Knife (AKA The Waiter’s Friend)
If you really want to impress your guests, you can tell them that Carl Wienke initiated the first recorded patent for a corkscrew in 1882. See this as a party trick of sorts. You’ll thank us later.
The sommelier knife is probably the most common wine opener on the market and may include a small knife blade, a corkscrew, a lever (the part that rests on the tip of the bottle) and a handle - which is designed with either wood, metallic, plastic or even metal - it all depends on what you like.
The Winged Corkscrew
This understated corkscrew first presented its usefulness in 1888. It’s designed with two ‘wings’ on either side of the worm and works by pushing the levers together once the worm has pierced the cork. Not many people know this, but you can use a winged corkscrew to close a bottle of wine you didn’t get to finish (not that you are leaving half-empty bottles around the house, but just in case).
The winged corkscrew is fairly easy to use and is considered to be a bar essential of the casual entertainer or oenophile.
The Twist Corkscrew
This is a utensil that was first developed by Reverend Samuel Henshall in 1795. Of course, this wasn’t for personal use, since there were many bottles of wine to open before a mass.
This might be the simplest of all wine openers, but this little device isn’t for those who struggle with uncorking. It’s traditional in every sense of the word and in terms of design; the twist corkscrew was made with a handle shaped almost like a half-moon, right above the screw, which is used to pull the cork from the bottleneck.
The Air Pressure Wine Opener
If there can be air fryers out there, then surely an air pressure wine opener can’t be such a foreign concept. By inserting a hollow needle through the cork, it then releases just the right amount of CO2 from its cartridge, allowing the cork to smoothly press itself out.
This is a great option if you want to keep your cool at a party. It’s a quick, seamless, and somewhat advanced method to open a bottle of wine. Still, let it be known that after 80-100 uses, you’ll probably have to get yourself a new one as these aren’t the sturdiest of options
This is almost like a luxury upgrade of the winged corkscrew. Most of the models on the market have comfy ergonomic handles that resemble the shape of a rabbit’s ears (just in case you were wondering) and pull out a cork in 3 seconds flat.
Not only is it really pretty and super functional, but it’s also constructed with hardened polycarbonate metal and nylon for long-term durability. In many cases, brands offer as much as a 10-year warranty.
Electric Wine Openers
There’s no shame in using an electric wine opener. This is a viable option for wine connoisseurs in their golden years and those with limited dexterity.
Most of these high-tech openers are battery-powered, but they usually last long enough. It all depends on how many bottles a day you tend to uncork . With the press of a button, the corkscrew will twirl like one of those dainty ballerinas in a vintage jewelry box and voilà, open the bottle right up
Air Pump Corkscrew
When all else fails, this fun corkscrew may serve as another party trick. In terms of features, it’s very similar to its cousin, the air pressure wine opener, but seasoned oenophiles vouch for this method of uncorking so it’s worth taking a closer look.
The air pump corkscrew also works with a needle that you use to pierce the cork. The handgrip helps you brace for impact, while the air pump sways from side to side, drawing air into the bottle until the cork pops out. Easy and entertaining, right?
Vintage Cork Puller Ah-So Opener
Now we’re getting into the classiest option. This is a prime selection if you wish to open that rare vintage bottle sealed with natural cork. How so? Well, the Ah-So opener is designed to keep the cork intact - unlike normal openers.
True wine aficionados keep this opener in their drawers because, with time, they’ve mastered their uncorking technique. First, you lodge the opener’s prongs in between the cork and bottle, and then you’ll twist the handle to pull the cork out from the bottleneck in one finessed flick - just like a habituated butler.
There is really no reason to feel you’re uncorking ‘the wrong way’. All it takes is a bit of practice and a handy tool that works for you.