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Spending Money for Science! And For Wine
Not on wine
I’m a little hazy yet on how this all works, but it inserts a very fine needle through the cork (or through a special topper designed for screwcap bottles). You then — I think — press a button that shoots CO2 into the bottle and forces the wine through the needle into your waiting glass. It sort of looks like this.
Yes, it comes with an aerator. No, I clearly haven’t figured out quite yet how to use it.
You may be tempted to press the lever to pour the wine. This is incorrect. I know this because this is how it looked.
The right way to do it — which I of course discovered after my foray into documentary filmmaking — is to do one longer press on the lever while holding your bottle sideways, and that pours the glass with a smoother and satisfactory flow.
What’s the point of all this, you may wonder, besides adding more toys to the wine drawer? Well, if you were, for example, a writer of a wine blog who opened a bottle of wine almost every week and had a ton of half-fulls around the house getting oxygenated (so much so that writer had to sometimes do news roundups to take a break from opening new ones), this would really save you. Coravin claims the wine will remain good “for weeks, months, or even years.” When you remove the system, the hole left behind is miniscule. This is right after I took it out:
Note that Coravin is designed to work with natural corks, so do be sure to check before you drill in. And as you might have guessed, these aren’t cheap. The Three+ model was the least expensive that seemed to have all the necessary bits, and I found a coupon, but I still paid about $170 for it. Also the CO2 cartridges need replacing. Each one is good for about 15 5-ounce glasses, according to the website. If you register your device, you’ll get a coupon worth 50% off a 6-pack of replacement cartridges, which should hold me nicely for a while. So it’s not cheap, but if it saves me from having to toss bottles that I couldn’t finish before they go off, it’ll probably pay for itself in a few months.
And oh, right, the wine! Of course the first bottles I put my hand on were screwcaps, which I want to save once I have a better handle, as it were, on using it. So I grabbed 2019 Domaine Gerard Bigonneau Reuilly Rouge. Reuilly is located in the Loire wine region in the center. Wines are not as well known as its pricier Sancerre neighbors, so decent values can be found. This is a pleasant pinot noir, nice cherry on the palate with some earthiness. Nice, but not spectacular.
I’ll give it another taste in a couple weeks and see how it is. For science! Stay tuned!