As I’ve got more into wine, it often felt extravagant to open a (even a cheap) bottle of wine mid-week. What if you just want a glass to go with a meal? Are you wasting the rest? How long can it keep?
Unlike my Dad, who, when I last visited seemed to have several half-drunk bottles of red lurking in a cupboard, gathering dust, I prefer to drink wine before it turns into vinegar.
This was especially evident for most of last year when Mrs Bacchanalian was pregnant.
As she was obliviously unable to share a glass or two from the standard 750ml bottle, it felt like I was drinking more than I usually would, should, or feeling like I should finish the wine before it lost its verve.
I’d usually put the wine in the fridge with a simple stopper to help it keep longer but I got a new gizmo at Christmas – hello Vacu-Vin Wine Saver Concerto.
The gadget works via a simple pump which can create a vacuum in the wine bottle when using special wine stoppers. This helps keep the wine inside longer by slowing the oxygenation process.
What you get in the pack
In the pack you get the pump, instructions and four stoppers. Priced around the £10 mark it won’t break the bank.
It is made from plastic and although it feels well made it is slightly flimsy. I am unsure how much abuse it will take, but it should last a few years at least depending on how often it is used.
How to use the Vacu Vin Wine Stopper
To operate you place the rubber stopper into the bottle, place the pump on top, then pump until you hear a click.
The more wine you’ve drunk, the longer it will take, but it isn’t difficult to do. Plus, I guess this helps to burn a few of the wine’s calories, right?
With multiple stoppers you can easily use them for enjoying specific wines with different courses if you are hosting a dinner party, or for saving a few bottles left over from different meals.
I could not seem to find packs of replacement stoppers available at a reasonable cost – which could be needed if you were doing tastings of more than or opening more than four wines.
Does the Vacu Vin Work?
I tested with several bottles of different styles, placing each in the fridge after sealing for 5 days. I tried white, red and sparkling wines and it worked a treat each time.
With the red wine, I let this warm up and open up before drinking. There is certainly an improvement, with the wine keeping its character for longer and without off-flavours creeping in.
I think with red it is best to leave the stopper off for a time to let it breathe, especially if it’s not had that time before you sealed it.
This gadget means you can enjoy a glass now and then of better wine without it spoiling quickly. This could be a useful tool to enjoy pairing wine with food several times a week.
The vacuum should help counteract the pressure from carbonated beverages but you may have to be careful when pulling out the cork and avoid shaking the bottle.
I’ve also tried with some other carbonated drinks like beer, but this needs a bit more testing, *hic*.
A good value wine gadget which is simple to use and could should get used on a regular basis.