01438 741177         thewinesociety.com

Alternative ways to open a wine bottle


Just for a little fun this morning, we’ve all seen the wine bottle in the shoe trick and the wine glass/sabre trick of opening champagne, but have you come across any other funny or “alternative” ways of opening a wine bottle.
A friend recently sent me a clip of someone attempting to open a bottle with a beer cap opener. That was HILARIOUS!
If anyone hasn’t seen the shoe trick, have a look at this…


Seen a few … but be prepared for something really scary:


HOLY MOSES!!! So if you are stuck on a desert Island with a bottle of wine and a magnifying glass same principle applies! Love it :joy:


Or rather more elegantly…


This is a similar version, the only problem is you probably end up with mulled wine, so a good way to remove a cork at Christmas !



Has anyone tried with this sort of thing?

Does it work? There are lots of versions about from around £4 upwards, are they all basically the same?
If it works why don’t we see more of them?


I own one…I do use it, but generally only on bottles that have a few years of age (I have found that it doesn’t work as well with bottles that are only a couple of years old) and only with natural corks.

It is trickier to use, and also does take a bit longer than using a regular corkscrew, and there is more chance of getting some small pieces of cork in the wine, which is probably why you don’t see more of them. Having said that, if you do have a particularly fragile cork, this is more likely to take it out in one piece than a waiters friend or similar lever style corkscrew.


Used mine only last night. A cork broke in half with a normal screw so fetched out the other half with my pongs. Really useful on older corks.


I’m impressed Alex88 and Russ. We have one of these two prong gadgets. We deployed it on a very old cork in a bottle of vintage port. Succeeded only in pushing the cork into the bottle and causing some of the wine to rush out. Having said that it did mean we could get at the port with aid of a long BBQ scewer to keep the cork from blocking the neck :blush:


yes, my understanding is that these are particularly good when the cork is older, fragile and soft. It means that if you use a normal corkscrew you risk shredding it from the centre. The prongs can keep it intact. However, there needs to be room for them to get down the sides of the cork, so a young, tight-fitting cork will be very hard to remove with them.

Moral: choose the right tool for the job!


Doesn’t do anything for the quality of the wine!


indeed! strikes more of desperation


Aaaha!! I’ve also just recently purchased one of these after attempting to get a cork out of an extremely old bottle of wine . I had resorted to heavy tweezers which eventually did the trick while cursing myself for not having one of these gadgets !
Naturally since I’ve purchased one I haven’t found ANY bottles to try it on :rofl::rofl:


Back in '97 or '98, at a big Mentzendorff tastingm I was assisting Bruce Guimaraens and Alistair Robertson to pull corks on bottles of Guimaraens going back to 1932. Bruce swore by one of these which he had recently bought in New York. I used a humble waiter’s friend. The corks broke on Bruce’s efforts and my painstaking efforts removed the remnants. As a result of which I was declared the consultant cork puller to the houses of Taylor and Guimaraens. I still use a waiter’s friend!


What a great story :wink:


That is what I use, it works 95% of the time. I do drink old stuff, too.

You have to get used to it, but then works a treat.


I had one, don’t know where it’s gone now, but found it often required a fair amount of force. The last few years I’ve used a rabbit style corkscrew, maybe from Wine Conoisseur, and never had any trouble or had to work too hard to open a bottle!


Thanks for all the comments on the two-pronged cork extractor. I’m going to order one to see how I get on with it! It’s a bit of a talking point if nowt else…


BTW I think this is the cheapest one I found on Amazon in case anyone else is interested…