Wine Openers and Corkscrews Guide

Not having a quality wine opener can sometimes ruin an evening.  Breaking a cork, or worse, the corkscrew can cause a real crisis.  I remember one night, I was trying to open a bottle of wine that had a plastic cork and ended up breaking not one, but two different corkscrews (and the second one had required another trip to the store) - and the bottle still hadn't been opened!  However, reading our guide before purchasing a wine opener will hopefully ensure that you have a better experience than I did.  Watch out for those plastic corks, though.

The Ideal Corkscrew

Look for a wine opener that:

  • Does not poke through the bottom of the cork.
  • Does not destroy the integrity of the cork, as this can lead to bits of cork floating in your wine.  Nobody likes that!
  • Is not attached to a Swiss Army knife .  Come on now.  You can afford to splurge.

Types of Wine Openers

A mounted wine opener , while certainly not for those on a budget, is extremely durable, sturdy and easy to use. It attaches to the counter or a wall, which gives you leverage and stability as you open the bottle.

The rabbit  or lever  style corkscrew is, again, quite expensive. However, while being very fast to use, it does not take up counter space like the mounted version, and as an added bonus, you can travel with it.

A pump  corkscrew uses air pressure to literally suck the cork out of the bottleneck. They are less expensive than rabbit or mounted openers but can still get pricey. Also, it is rumoured that you either love them or hate them.

The twist corkscrew  is one of the most basic types of wine openers. They can be found nearly anywhere for a decent cost, and they tend to be quite effective. However, these can easily break if you have a stubborn cork.

The waiter style  wine opener (or wine key) is my personal favourite. As the name implies, they are usually used by waiters and lend a certain bravado to the opening process. They are usually very affordable and very portable.

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