Whether the day after Thanksgiving is your favorite time to shop or you prefer to hold off until cyber Monday — or maybe you’re more like me and hold off until the very last second — it never hurts to have a shortlist of some wine-centric gifts to give your wine-loving friends. These are just a few items tried and tested by yours truly that I’m truly thankful to have in my life. I’ve got everything from stocking stuffers to big ticket items that wine-lovering novices and pros will appreciate. Take a look, shop around, and have a very happy holiday season!
I was first turned on to Capabunga during a Twitter chat discussing the best way to preserve bubbles. Up until recently I was using an awkward-shaped metal wine cork that really only fit inside the necks of bubbly wine. Suffice it to say, the cork often popped out, leaking air, and failing at its job. Enter CapaBubbles.
All you have to do is clip a screw base to the neck of the bottle and the fancy, fun, and cutely annotated cap screws right on. I tested this product on several bottles, waiting various lengths of time to test how well the preservation system works. When sealed tight, the Capabunga CapaBubbles will keep your bubbly bubbly for about a week. Any longer than that, and the wine just doesn’t have the body it did upon first opening. (I’d heard a rumor — not from the distributor — that it could last up to three weeks. Not so, and my personal recommendation is to enjoy the wine within three days of capping.) One thing I will note is that the screw base doesn’t seem to fit all bottles perfectly. There were a few bottle necks that were too large around to actually clip the base completely. If this happens, you can squeeze the base while you screw the cap on. It works just fine.
Learn more and purchase CapaBubbles (Retail: $9.95 each)
Capabunga Wine Stoppers
Admittedly, I’m a hard sell on bubbles. (Although an upcoming feature on sparkling wine has helped me break that barrier.) So I don’t keep a lot of it in the house. Thus, my favorite Capabunga product is actually their regular wine stoppers. Many times — especially in the summer — I go to pour myself a glass of wine, but want to keep the bottle in the fridge or cellar to stay cool. The problem is that if you pour a small amount — even just full Brisocoe-sized glass — my Rabbits (which I do love and still use!) actually pop out if putting the bottle back horizontally. I hate wasting wine and cleaning up the cellar after this happens and hate having to store the wine vertically, even for a short amount of time. Problem solved with Capabunga, as the rubber cap completely seals around the top of the bottle.
Learn more, purchase, and customize your own Capabunga wine stoppers. (Retail price varies.)
Vine Bottle Stabilizers
Speaking of fridge storage — I am the queen of a messy fridge.
Gross, right? With bottles rolling around like that, there’s no way to protect the precious contents, not to mention I can hardly put anything else on that shelf. Well inventor Marc Rumaner and his wife had the same problem and came up with a pretty easy solution:
Done deal! What I loved was that even though I only had two, the Vine Bottle Stabilizers actually kept the wines in between in line as well. Honestly, it’s one of those inventions you wish you thought of — and a product you don’t realize you need until you have it.
Learn more and purchase Vine Bottle Stabilizers. (Retail: $8 for a pack of 2)
Avina Wine Tools
I know…none of us really needs another corkscrew right?
This may be so…but if I was going to go out and purchase one for someone who maybe doesn’t have a drawer dedicated to wine-opening contraptions, I’d absolutely gift them the Avina Wing Corkscrew.
The one pictured here is actually the Avina Swan Corkscrew. This pink edition donates a percentage of sales to breast cancer charities. Although at the end of the day I am a fan of the good old fashioned waiter’s friend (which Avina also sells), I have to admit that this is the most seamless wing corkscrew I’ve ever used. You can read the full Avina Wine Tools Swan Corkscrew review.
Learn more and purchase Avina Wine Tools Swan Corkscrew. (Retail: $24.99)
Coravin Wine System
Ok, I’m going to get super nerdy here. As a wine writer, I taste a lot of wine — much of that is actually done at home or in the office. I’m just one little woman, and to keep all you fine folks up to speed on latest releases, fun wine regions, and just darn good wine, I do my best to keep up my “one wine a day” reputation. I feel bad popping the cork on something delicious, only to have it sit in the cellar until I can pair it with a proper meal. So what I’m saying is the Coravin Wine System isn’t just for tasting rooms any longer.
This specific system is the Coravin Model One Wine System. For those unfamiliar with how it works, the Coravin’s needle penetrates corks with the tiniest of pinpricks. (Note: This only works on natural corks, not synthetic material, screw caps, and cannot be used on sparkling wine.) The capsule-loading chamber uses minimal force, ensuring an airtight seal and preventing the release of internal gases (hehe). The capsules contain 99.99% pure argon gas, protecting the wine left in bottle from oxidation. And so, you can enjoy a 5-ounce pour without popping the cork.
Learn more and purchase the Coravin Wine System Model One. (Retail: $199.95)
Did I forget anything? What are some fun wine toys that you’re asking Santa for this year? Me? I could honestly use a new wine cellar — any recommendations out there? Cheers guys!
All products reviewed except for the Coravin Wine System Model One (which was purchased) were received as samples for review. This has no affect on my opinion or decision to include the product in this post.
BriscoeBites officially accepts samples as well as conducts on-site and online interviews. Want to have your wine, winery, tasting room, or wine-related product featured? Please visit the Sample Policy page where you can contact me directly. Cheers!