Wine accessories are part of the romance and ritual of drinking wine that goes back thousands of years.
For some folks, wine accessories are a hobby as well as a convenience. Antique port tongs and corkscrews sell well on E-bay. If you like wine, you get to like the paraphernalia that goes with it.
For example, there are foil cutters, drip collars, glass charms, decanters, insulated totes, port tongs, olfactory wine essence kits and stopper-faucets.
Other accessories include stain removers, nitrogen chargers, bottle top filters, vacuum pumps and four types of corkscrews with variations of each. I prefer the two-pronged Ah-So or butler’s corkscrew, myself.
There’s even a Tannin Softening System that puts years of aging into a bottle of “harsh” wine in about 30 minutes. It increases the fruit taste and brings out the aromas by altering the tannin molecules. It costs about $50.
One of the best sources for wine accessories and collectibles is a great online hardware catalog at Wine Accessories Unlimited.
And then there are drinking vessels. We western moderns tend to prefer a clear glass bowl on a stem so we can enjoy wine’s color, and keep our hot hands away from the cool stuff. A 10- or 12-once bowl leaves room for the aromas to gather. There’s not a “best” bowl shape, just preferences.
A most complete to glassware and other interesting accessories can be found at Wineware Ideas.
No matter how you wash glassware used for wine, rinse it by hand to make sure you get rid of any detergent residue. Fine crystal glassware tends to break when it comes into contact with almost anything, so it’s an unnecessary added expense for the rest of us. However, there’s little doubt that glassware enhances the wine drinking experience – as opposed to, say, drinking from a wineskin.
Good quality wine needs to be cared for in ways that help to become as good as it can. For the best ways to do that, regardless of your budget, see Wine Storage Systems.
Gift baskets are always appreciated and are appropriate for any occasion and any season. A gift basket that includes Colorado wine, for example, will impress the recipient wherever it goes. For ideas for creative gift baskets that are built around wine, steaks, chocolates and other delectables, see Wine Baskets
Don’t forget the many publications devoted to wine. They range from slick and colorful to newsprint and e-zines. There’s something for everyone. Enjoy!