Without a corkscrew, you can't get to your wine. With the easy-to-use, affordable HiCoup Kitchenware, you'll be sipping in seconds.
Of all the accessories, a corkscrew is a must-have, above everything else. Heck, you don't even need a glass, really — just chug it from the bottle. But not all corkscrews are reliable, and time and time again, I keep coming back to the tried-and-true waiter's corkscrew from HiCoup Kitchenware.
I've long been handy with a classic waiter's corkscrew, but it's not for everyone and it does take some time to master (we have two other recommendations down below that are easier to use). The HiCoup Kitchenware corkscrew I've long used has a sharp foil cutter, a double-hinged fulcrum, and a notch cut into the worm (the screw) that grips corks reliably, seldom causing them to crumble or split. And while I prefer a subtle wooden grip, the thing comes in more than two dozen colors, including bright blues and pinks.
It's affordable and reliable, which is all you can ask for from a great corkscrew.
Pros: Affordable, reliable, built-in foil cutter and bottle opener
Cons: Some will find it hard to use
The best wine glasses
Once you have the cork popped, you need somewhere to pour the wine. Do it in style and at (relatively) good pricing with the 12-piece Riedel Overture.
Riedel has been been making terrific glassware since the 1700s. I have several Riedel wine glasses in my larger goblet collection, and they are the finest of the bunch by far. Which is a good thing, because they also cost the most.
Yes, Riedel glasses can be pricey, but there are good values. This $140 12-piece Riedel Overture set comes with four glasses for red wine, four for white, and four for sparkling wines. That works out to $17.50 per glass, which is a decent price for high-quality Austrian crystal glassware.
They're dishwasher safe, but because of water spots and the increased risk of breaking, I always hand-wash my Riedel glassware, and you should, too.
Pros: Dishwasher safe, timeless style, versatile set
White, rosé, and sparkling wines must be served chilled to be properly enjoyed. In fact, even some reds are best served chilled, like Zinfandels and Cabernet Francs. You could just stick the bottle in the fridge next to the mustard and grapes, but I think we can do better than that.
If you're not ready for a full-sized wine fridge but you want to keep a few bottles properly positioned on their sides and perfectly chilled, go with the 12-bottle NutriChef Thermoelectric Wine Cooler. It's small enough to sit on a countertop and even makes a handsome presentation, with space for one bottle to stand on full display behind the glass. At about $160, this wine mini fridge isn't cheap, but it's quite reliable and very well-reviewed.
Pros: Great size, reliable cooling, glass window for display and checking stock
Cons: Expensive for a 12-bottle fridge
The best wine stoppers
Done sipping for the night but there's still wine in the bottle? Keep it there, and keep it from spoiling, with a good stopper.
A standard 750-milliliter bottle of wine is the perfect size for two people to enjoy together without any ramifications for the morning, or just large enough for one person to likely regret upon waking. The good news? You don't have to finish a bottle of wine. You can just close it up and enjoy it within the next couple of days for a red, and within a week or two for a chilled white.
A five-pack of OHMAXHO Wine Stoppers costs just $5.99 and they do the job perfectly, reliably creating an air-tight seal that will protect any type of wine, or a vinegar, oil, or any other fluid, for that matter. The stoppers are made of food-grade silicone and have a solid steel core. They're dishwasher safe, and crazy cheap.
There are some very expensive decanters out there, and many of them are truly gorgeous, serving as much as artwork as they do as aerators. The Bella Vino Wine Decanter is rather simple in style but is handsome nonetheless. And as far as allowing red wine to open up, it works every bit as well as pricier options.
The broad, flat shape of the body of this decanter ensures maximum exposure to air as a red wine sits, while the slant at the top allows for easier, cleaner filling of the decanter and pouring of the wine.
Whether you use it several times a week to open up your favorite red wines or it spends most of its time as an ornament, this decanter is useful and well-priced. It is the perfect size for a standard 750-ml bottle of wine, and the perfect gift when you want it to look like you spent more than you did.
With a 4.6-star overall rating on Amazon, most customers love this decanter. Just handle it carefully, as the glass is thin and prone to chipping
Pros: Great price, stylish design, easy and effective to use
Cons: Chips easily
The best wine aerator
This glass aerator from AKhomeryhelps open up red wines in seconds, so you don't have to wait hours for the wine to achieve its ideal flavor profile.
Exposure to air enhances the flavor of good red wine, a process called aeration. The standard way to let a wine's flavor profile "open," as it's called, is to simply pull the cork out of the bottle an hour or so before you serve the wine. A better way to do it is to use a wine decanter, but that still requires some waiting.
If you want to aerate your wine in mere seconds, do it with the AKhomery Glass Wine Aerator. I own and use this gadget a few times a month, and have done a number of side-by-side tests of the same wine poured through it or served right out of the bottle, and there is a noticeable improvement when you use this thing.
Many wine aerators are made of acrylic. This one is hand-blown glass, so the only material the wine touches is completely inert, not affecting the flavor of the wine in any way save for, of course, the aeration.
This is another product that seems like it costs more than it does, but it's only around $20.
Pros: Glass does not affect flavor, rapidly effective, good price
Cons: Fluid occasionally accumulates inside walls of the unit
Wine has mainly been stored in glass bottles for as long as any of us living today can remember, and that's fine. However, they aren't great for travel because they are heavy and they could break. If you're taking wine outdoors, like to a picnic, transfer it to a Hydro Flask 25-Ounce Wine Bottle.
Like all Hydro Flask containers, this wine bottle double-wall vacuum insulation, which keeps wine at the right temperature whether it's red or white (if it's white wine, do chill it beforehand) and prevents condensation from forming outside. It's made of metal so it can withstand accidental drops. The cap keeps the liquid sealed during travel, and it's made from BPA- and Phthalate-free materials. And, it will hold a standard-sized bottle of wine.
The Insider Picks team is a big fan of Hydro Flask products, as nearly member uses one in one form or another. Besides the quality construction, the insulated chamber won't retain taste or smell from what you put in it, which means water won't taste like the Malbec you pour into it a few days ago.
Pros: Durable construction, leak-proof, good insulation, doesn't retain taste or smell
Cons: Nothing major
Other wine accessories worth considering
If you never quite got the knack of using a waiter-style corkscrew, or if you have hand strength issues, then a lever-based corkscrew is a fine alternative. Forge Premium makes a lever-operated corkscrew that takes about three seconds to use and requires only three pounds of pressure as you sink the worm into the cork and then draw it out again. Watch out for the occasional broken cork with this powerful corkscrew.
If you want the machine to do all the work, get a Secura SWO-3N Electrical Wine Bottle Opener and open your wine at the literal push of a button. It's one of the lowest-cost electric corkscrews out there, yet it looks good and works well. More than 4,000 Amazon customers have rated it 4.4 stars.
If you're not quite ready for a wine glass that costs $17.50, how about a set of four for $18.99? Each of the AmazonBasics All-Purpose Wine Glasses holds a commanding 19 ounces of fluid, so you can use them with wine or as water glasses, or even for a pint of beer. They're not handsome enough to catch the eye but they are perfectly adequate and won't ruin the tableau of an otherwise elegant table.
If you take your wine tailgating or if you really don't want to clean up after your next party, then a 12-pack of disposable TOSSWARE Vino Stemless Wine Cups will serve nicely. You can rinse them out and use them time and again — like I do when camping — or you can just, well, toss 'em. They're also safer to use than glass in certain situations, like a pool party, yet they give off a more sophisticated vibe than red plastic cups. The soft plastic is flexible but return to their natural shape, and they won't crack like hard plastic. Even better: They can snap onto each other for easy transport and storage.
For keeping a bottle of wine chilled while the evening goes on, a simple but stylish Enoluxe Wine Chiller Bucket is a great choice. The double-walled, vacuum-sealed design of the sleek steel bucket keeps a bottle at least 10-degrees cooler than the ambient temperature and the bucket never sweats with condensation.
A Vacu Vin Rapid Ice Wine Cooler works wonders when on-the-go. As the name suggests, one of these sleeves can quickly cool a bottle down from room temperature and will keep it cold for hours. Just store them in the freezer and you'll always be ready to chill.
Sparkling wine bottle stopper
If you popped open a bottle of bubbly, you'll need a more advanced wine stopper. The BGMAXimum Champagne Stopper wraps two arms down around the rim of a bottle of carbonated wine, holding its silicone disc down over the mouth. And this thing works, too. I've enjoyed Proseccos and Bruts days after first opening them and they were still plenty fizzy.