on the market today. Having a good
quality wine opener makes it much easier
to enjoy your wine. We’ve taken the
top rated wine openers on the market
and reviewed them for you so you
can see which one appeals to you the most.
Wine Opener Buying Guide
What is a Wine Opener?
Having the right wine opener is very important if you have wine, whether it’s once in a while or on a regular basis. Even if you are just opening a bottle of wine at home to have a glass with dinner or at the end of a long day, having to struggle with the cork or worse, having the cork break off creates frustration and ruins the enjoyment of having that glass of wine. When you have a good quality wine opener, you will be able to always open the wine bottle with ease and not waste time getting back to socializing and enjoying your evening.
There are probably thousands of different kinds of wine openers available on the market and all of them can be separated into a few distinct categories that we will go over below. Your personal needs will determine which style best suits your needs and that will help you choose the right one,
Other factors that you will also look at during the selection process include how much you have to spend, size, how portable they are and the availability of the models you like. All of these factors come together to help you choose an excellent wine opener.
Before the Research Begins
Do you have any physical limitations? – Hand strength is a factor in the kind of wine opener you want to get. If you don’t have any issues with hand strength that pretty much leaves all the styles open for you. If you do have limited hand strength, don’t worry, all you need to do is get an electric wine opener. Many people prefer these regardless of whether they need the extra strength or not simply because they are so easy to use and efficient as well.
Do you have a lot of Dinner Parties? – If you host a lot of dinner parties where wine is served, you will want to ensure that you choose a durable model that can handle opening several bottles at one time. Again, an electric model will fit this need well and you won’t spend a lot of time opening bottles.
Do you have regular or even occasional wine tasting parties? – In addition to an excellent quality, easy to use wine opener, you may want to consider a wine aerator and decanter to go along with that great wine opener.
Pump Styles are not Safe – If you are considering a pump style wine opener, think again. These are actually not very safe and a stuck cork can blow out without warning, catching the user or someone else right in the face, causing injury.
What size is best for your needs? – Are you looking for a great home wine opener that can fit in the drawer or on the counter? Or do you need one that fits into your pocket for work? Determine what you will be using it for (work or home) and you can find many that are the perfect size for your needs.
Is Kitchen Décor a Factor? – If matching your kitchen décor is important, you will have to look for models that will fit into what your existing kitchen looks like. Since many are made of silver or stainless steel, finding something that will match or even complement your current décor should be very easy.
How old are the Bottles You Are Opening?– Bottles that have old or drier than recommended corks that can crumble will do better with a prong style wine opener that doesn’t have to have the corkscrew screwed in which can actually increase crumbling.
How important is the Wine Opener?- If you are just looking for a tool that you can use once in awhile when you have the occasional glass of wine, it will be a different caliber or type of wine opener than if you are looking for something that you will use often such as in a fine dining restaurant, as a bartender or as a wine tasting, you will want to opt for a fancier, more durable model that can handle the load and still look stylish.
What about Extras? – Extras that one may get with a wine opener include different glasses for red and white wine, decanters, drip stoppers and even a wine journal or book or some kind that teaches you all about the vast array of wines that are out there. Depending on how serious you want to become, there are many enjoyable extras that can go along with a durable and sleek wine opener.
There are several types of wine openers on the market. These different styles include lever-style, table top, electric, waiter and butterfly. We have gone into detail about each one below for you so you will understand the difference between the different types you encounter during your search.
- Lever Style – This style of wine opener can be expensive but they are well worth the cost. They are extremely easy for the novice wine enthusiast. All they need to do to use them is press the lever down which drives the corkscrew into the cork and then lift the lever back up to easily remove the cork. They are a bit larger and bulkier than other styles but they are a big favorite due to their ease of use.
- Table Top – These are a good choice for homes that have personal bars in them. They are also more expensive but add a lot of style to your home bar. Table top wine openers are easy to use and operate the same basic way lever style openers do. They are larger and heavier than lever style models though due to being designed to sit on the bar top and don’t have to be stored away.
- Electric Style – Another more expensive type of wine opener, the electric model opens wine bottles with minimal effort needed from the user. They don’t take up much room at all and are available in many different colors and designs making them perfect for the décor conscious user. If you don’t like manual wine openers or you open a lot of bottles regularly, this is the one for you.
- Waiter Style – these are the least expensive of the wine openers on the market and just like their name indicates they are they style that is often carried by servers in fine dining restaurants. You also may see these types of openers on picket knives that have a lot of functions. The big appeal of this style of opener is its portability. The only thing about this waiter style wine opener is that it takes some practice to become proficient at using it and novices may really feel like they are struggling to get it right. The key to success with this model is inserting the corkscrew into the cork properly so it does not break.
- Butterfly Style – Another name for these common wine openers is winged corkscrew opener. They are created to easily open wine bottles in an efficient manner. They are inexpensive and you may see these in many people’s utensil drawer. This is another model where the placement of the corkscrew as it is going into the cork, is important. This type of wine opener is pretty small in size which makes them very good for carrying in an apron.
There are several things that you want to look for when choosing the right wine opener. When the models you are looking at have these features you can be confident that you are getting a good quality wine opener.
Handles all Types of Corks-You want the corkscrew or other style of wine opener to handle all types of corks without ruining them.
Can Extract the Cork without having to Shake the Bottle – If there is sediment in the bottle, you don’t want to shake it because that could cause that sediment to end up in the glass. Look for a wine opener that doesn’t require you to shake or move the bottle an abnormal amount.
Doesn’t Require Brute Strength to get the Cork Out – You want your wine opener to take much of the force that is needed to get a cork out of the wine bottle. They are not meant to just fall out of course, but you don’t want to have to fight them so hard that the cork breaks into pieces. Most wine openers have leverage or torque that is used to assist in getting the cork out much easier.
Look for a Worm and Not an Augur – A worm is a corkscrew that looks like a coiled worm. The augurs look like a worm that has been wrapped around a nail. Augurs have a bad habit of shredding corks and making it very difficult to get them out of the bottle so look for wine openers with worms for the best performance.
Having a good quality wine opener is a major part of having an enjoyable experience with wine tasting and drinking. With all of the choices available it can be really confusing to try and sort through all of them without the right kind of knowledge. This buyer’s guide has provided some important information that will help you in your search for the perfect wine opener.
As you get more proficient at using one, you may even want to teach yourself to use different styles so you can become adept at using all types of wine openers. Once you have a great wine opener you will be ready to enjoy a glass of wine occasionally and have the knowledge that uncorking the bottle will be simple and fast.
- Brookstone – http://www.brookstone.com/
- Rabbit – http://www.techquelle.com/
- Oster – http://www.oster.com/kitchen-tools/