Essential Wine Accessories (that won’t break the bank) – Part 1

If you’re a budding wine drinker (or you know one) looking to ensure you have the most essential wine accessories, but without laying out big bucks, this is the right guide for you.

PART 1 – Something to open the bottle – Corkscrew

Of course if you only ever drink screwcapped wine then you won’t need a corkscrew, but although some great wine is available with a tin lid there’s still lots out there that isn’t.

DO GET one (or more) of the following:

1. A foil cutter

Foil cutter
Foil cutter

Using one of these is quicker and safer than a knife for cutting the foil off bottle tops.  It’s also somehow more satisfying.  Not expensive so grab a few!

2. A waiter’s friend

Waiter's friend
Waiter’s friend

There’s a reason this has its name, it’s probably the most efficient and easy to use design, but compact enough to slip into a pocket.  Sometimes has a bargain extra crown cap opener as well.

3. A waiter’s friend with double hinge

Waiter's friend with double hinge
Waiter’s friend with double hinge

For long corks where a regular waiter’s friend just can’t reach, this is just the ticket.  Also, for delicate corks that threaten to break when they are slightly bent on opening, the double hinge lets you minimise this.

4. A waiter’s friend with foil cutter

Waiter's friend with foil cutter
Waiter’s friend with foil cutter

The best of 1 and 2 above!  What’s not to like?  This is actually my favourite design, I have about a dozen around the house.

DON’T GET any of these:

5. Screwpull


Yes these look(ed) delightfully trendy, and gadgety, and …well…blokey, but it’s heavy and cumbersome, and it’s just total overkill.  As for the ones attached to a bar, don’t get me started…

6.Twin wing lever with solid core

Twin lever wing corkscrew
Twin lever wing corkscrew

This just destroys the cork so it might not even get back into the bottle, never mind be relatively airtight to serve as a stopper for a day or two.  Unfortunately they are fairly commonplace.  There are versions which don’t have a solid core, but to be quite honest they still look crap!

If you have a favourite, or you disagree with any of the above, leave a comment and let me know!

Part 2 will look at something to pour the wine into…