What to Get the Wine Lover on Your Wine Gifts List.
Not all gadgets are good ideas for wine gifts.
Wine lovers can be a particular bunch. The same holds true when it comes to the variety of gadgets and trinkets available intended to help enhance your wine experience.
It can be mind boggling to browse all that is available for wine gifts. But not all of it is money well spent.
“So many wine gadgets look fancy and come with bold claims about what they can do to make your wine better,” says Marcel Morgenstern, sommelier and national sales manager at Pondview Estate Winery. “You are best to judge them by what they actually do for your wine experience. A good rule to follow when it comes to gadgets is to think class and sophistication, not gimmicks.”
Here are some tips for wine gifts from Marcel on what to look for. And what to avoid for the wine lover on your Christmas list for wine gifts.
Instead of a butterfly wine opener. Get a solid waiter’s corkscrew.
The “worm” on most butterfly corkscrews is usually too short and too fat. Running the risk of the cork breaking before you get it out of the bottle. A two-step waiter’s corkscrew is the most simple and best way to open a bottle of wine. Click here for a quick tutorial on how to properly open your bottle.
Instead of Bottle stoppers. Get an in-bottle decanter.
Bottle stoppers may look good. But they do not make the wine last longer. As soon as you open the bottle, oxygen gets in. And the wine will start to open up and eventually oxidize. And seriously, who does not finish an open bottle of wine? An in-bottle decanter, on the other hand, actually works. It aerates the wine while making a nice, clean pour. It softens the tannins on younger and bigger reds and makes them feel softer on your taste buds.
Instead of a wine bottle icicle. Get a stainless steel ice bucket.
The icicle is meant to keep your wine cold. But wine will chill much quicker by simply putting it in a bucket of ice. Most any bucket will do. There is an elegance to experiencing wine and having a bottle of chilling in a shiny bucket.
Quick tip. Add some cold water to the ice cubes which will help chill the wine faster.
Instead of a wine sippy cup. Get crystal glassware.
Seriously? A sippy cup for wine gifts? You may as well drink it out of a take-out coffee cup. Your choice of glass makes a huge difference in how you enjoy your wine. Consider the glass a loudspeaker for the wine. Designed to emphasize the nuances of the bouquet and how the wine flows over your tongue. The right glass changes the way the wine speaks to you. And certain glasses are designed for particular wines.
Instead of a wine bottle air pump. Get a simple crystal or glass decanter.
The air pump gives the impression you are doing something more than just putting a stopper in the bottle, but you aren’t. Once open the wine will oxidize anyway. Plus, it is good to let a wine breathe when you first open the bottle. A decanter is old school. But is still the best way to open up the wine before enjoying the first glass. Pour older wines carefully into the decanter to ensure you leave any sediment in the bottle. Be more aggressive with new wines and forcefully pour them in. Maybe even give it a swirl in the decanter allowing the air to open up the wine.
About Pondview Estate Winery:
Drawing on more than three generations of winemaking experience, Pondview Estate Winery is one of the newest additions to the Four Mile Creek appellation in the heart of Niagara’s wine country in Canada. Family owned by Luciano and Adriana Puglisi, Pondview crafts exceptional Ontario VQA wines rooted in an Italian heritage. Luciano earned him the prestigious title of Grape King in 2008 awarded by the Ministry of Agriculture to the finest vineyard operator in Ontario. Their secret to success: Great wine is a harmony of earth and wine.