We make certain commitments because we have to — think gym membership, ridiculously strict cell phone plan. Others, we make because they’re delightful; for instance, joining a cheese of the month club or surrendering an entire weekend to Seasons 1 and 2 of “Emily in Paris.”
Drinking a bottle of wine lands somewhere in between. The wine itself is delightful, yes, but the commitment might be more than we can handle: To drink one glass, we have to commit to the whole bottle. Once uncorked, a bottle of wine is introduced to oxygen, and no matter how much pumping you do with this little gizmo, it basically becomes an expensive, ticking time bomb. Drink it, or boom — there goes your investment.
At least, that’s how it used to go. But these are not the dark ages of wine. We have wine delivery now. We have (quality) canned wines. And, thanks to a brilliant selection of products from Coravin, we have several ways to drink a glass of wine without having to commit to the entire bottle. And since we’re hosting more at-home dinner parties and beefing up our modest wine cellars these days, it’s the perfect time to stock our wine bars with tools from Coravin. Variety is the spice of life and Coravin keeps all of it fresh. Let’s start with three must-have tools for every serious wine bar.
There’s a good reason this one is called the “Timeless” Six+. Yes, the design is timelessly classy — the kind of sleek, ergonomic look that’ll withstand changes in design aesthetic, unlike, say, this. But a much more important reason the word “Timeless” applies is that, with this one powerful tool, almost any bottle of wine in your cabinet becomes kind of immortal. It’s compatible with natural corks and screw cap wines and will keep the bottle fresh — until you drink it, that is. The Timeless Six+ is part of the original Coravin product line, the Timeless Wine Preservation System, which uses a “non-coring needle” to pass through natural cork enclosures so you can pour wine without actually, technically, opening the bottle. Basically, it’s like if the team from “Oceans 11” was asked to break into a bottle of wine and steal a glass without anyone knowing. And yes, we’re imagining George Clooney as we say that.
Fortunately, you don’t need Clooney to get the benefits of the Timeless Six+. All you have to do is secure the Smart Clamps over the neck of the bottle and press down, tip the bottle so the spout is over your glass, and press and release the trigger button to pour (don’t forget to enjoy that textured grip, a woefully underutilized sensory bonus). If you’re curious as to what replaces the wine, it’s an inert, harmless gas called argon that’s used in food and even health care industry processes, among other things. And since argon is heavier than oxygen, it acts as a protective layer, shielding the wine in the bottle from oxidation. All that means you can bounce from one bottle to the next without ever opening them. At wine hangouts and bottle swaps or any kind of BYO fun you’re hosting, everyone can try whatever they like and every bottle will still taste like it was never opened for months or even years.
(FYI, you can use it on screw cap wine bottles, too. Just pick up the Coravin Timeless Variety Screw Cap accessory.)
If you know you’ll get through a bottle of wine within a month and want every glass to taste like the first beautiful sip — you know, the one that made you shed a single tear? — the Pivot+ is a must-have for your wine bar. Unlike with the Timeless Six, you’ll actually open your bottle of wine in the traditional way and replace that closure with the specially designed Pivot Stopper. Also unlike the Timeless Six, the Pivot+ features a wine tube rather than a thin needle, which means you can pour a glass with the Pivot system almost as fast from an open bottle. But unlike the open bottle, the Pivot+ System uses the friendly, inert argon gas to protect the remaining wine so it’s just as delish whether you come back to it days or weeks later. With the Pivot+, once you’re done pouring, you remove the Pivot+ device with one swift motion and simply leave the Coravin Pivot wine stopper in place, with four more glorious weeks of fresh-as-first-pour wine to come.
Another aspect of the Pivot+ that makes it ideal for the thirsty wine lover who also treasures quality: The device comes with a bonus attachment that acts as an instant decanter. The Pivot Aerator gently aerates wine as it pours, breaking a single wine stream into 32 separate streams, increasing the total surface area by a factor of 1,000. Yes, those numbers are useful if you want to break out some cool math for dinner party guests baffled by how dynamic the wine tastes right out of the bottle. And they’re not wrong: with the Pivot Aerator, wine pours like it’s been decanting for at least an hour. And seriously, who has time to decant these days?
The brand new Coravin Sparkling™ System took the Coravin engineers eight years to perfect, and we’re glad they took their time. Seriously, if you love bubbles (and who doesn’t) it’s a must-have in your wine bar. Why? Because it solves one of the oldest, saddest problems in wine drinking: sparkling wine is the most fun to open, and the least fun to return to. Once you pop or saber off that cork, carbon dioxide begins to escape from the body of the wine itself, and it’s a fast countdown to flatness. The Coravin Sparkling™ system gets around that with a combination of their Sparkling Stopper and their Sparkling Charger, which fills the remaining space in the bottle with carbon dioxide. All you have to do is close the bottle with the Stopper and charge it with the easy-to-use Charger, which has an Internal Regulator that tells it when to stop adding CO2.
Like any good product, this one’s an investment, for sure. But if you add it up, it’ll likely save you a ton of money in pricey bottles of sparkling wine that go prematurely flat. Imagine you popped a nice bottle of Champagne to celebrate buying a home. Four weeks later you can pop that same bottle and get the same bubbly effervescence to celebrate finally picking a paint color for the upstairs bathroom. The stopper is universal, meaning you can use it on half-size, standard, and magnums. Because let’s be real, we all deserve a lot of Champagne just for showing up these days.
Really, we deserve the best of the best of our favorite bottles of wine, from the first pour onward. With these products from Coravin, that’s exactly what you’ll get.
This article is sponsored by Coravin.