Top 5 Wine Accessories

By: Stefani Newman

From furniture created out of wine barrels to handmade decanters, the latest wine accessories go far beyond the corkscrew and all-purpose glass.
From furniture created out of wine barrels to handmade decanters, the latest wine accessories go far beyond the corkscrew and all-purpose glass.
Stockbyte/Thinkstock

Ah, vino -- fruit of the gods. Prized, collected and ranked for taste, color and smell. Forget beer, vodka or other spirits. Wine is your drink of choice, at parties or the end of a long day. You know what the terms color, appearance, aroma and bouquet mean, and you're not afraid to use them in conversation. You have a favorite vineyard and a vintage that pleases your palate. In a nutshell, wine is your thing.

Whether you're an oenophile or just starting your journey down the wine connoisseur path, accessories to keep wine fresh, chilled and on display are as important as your favorite merlot. We're going way beyond bottle openers and incorporating science and functionality. Read on for our top 5 wine accessories you'll just have to get for yourself.

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5. Decanters and Aerators

These decanters double as works of art when not in use.
These decanters double as works of art when not in use.
Photo from Riedel: The Wine Glass Company/Flickr/CC-Attribution

Letting a wine breathe doesn't mean simply opening the bottle and letting it sit open. Decanters are unique containers that offer more than just a stylish accessory to your meal. Decanting allows wines to properly aerate, balancing aromas and mellowing their tannins. Any sediment from the wine settles to the bottom, allowing for a pure beverage.

Wine enthusiasts often use glass decanters and aerators to mix the right amount of air with the wine to bring out a wine's aroma and flavor. Decanters come in a variety of shapes and materials, from a simple, wide-mouthed glass decanter to a hand-turned, one-of-a-kind crystal visual piece of art that's also functional. The only limit is your budget.

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4. Wine Displays

For wine lovers, storing and displaying unopened bottles is just as much fun as drinking. Wine racks, cabinets, refrigerators or grand walk-in rooms reflect your personality and show off your wine in style. It doesn't matter if you live in a small space or a mansion -- wine storage comes in a wide variety of styles and sizes (and prices).

Do you live in a studio apartment you can barely walk through? Hang a wine rack right on your wall, or suspended a wine grate from the ceiling. Do you have dozens of bottles from your last vineyard road trip? Don't worry; you have plenty of storage options. Whether you prefer the modern look of metal or a classic wood cabinet, you can find your ultimate wine display case to show off your most precious vintages.

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3. Wine Preservers

A wine preservation kit can help make your last sip as good as your first.
A wine preservation kit can help make your last sip as good as your first.
Photo courtesy Metrokane

Wine tastes best when it's shared and appreciated, right? But, a bottle isn't always finished during a meal (or more than one bottle, depending on the size of your dinner party). Just as connoisseurs know that a little oxygen brings out wine's true essences, it's also wine's worst enemy. Leave a bottle of wine improperly sealed, and down the drain it goes! Wine preservers help keep bottles of wine fresh for days, so you don't waste a drop of your favorite vintage.

There are a few different ways to preserve wine in the bottle. One of the more basic ways is to reseal the bottle with an airtight stopper. Go a step further, and you can buy a resealer that actually pumps much of the extra air out of the wine bottle, thwarting any oxygenation that can ruin the taste. A science lover might try argon cartridges or a nitrogen gas system that replaces the air with inert gasses that won't spoil your wine. Whatever you use, your palate will thank you -- and you won't be wasting any money by pouring that spoiled wine down the drain.

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2. Speed Chillers

How many times have you bought an exciting new bottle of wine to bring to a party or to open immediately when you get home, only you have to wait for it to chill? We feel your pain! Enter the coolest wine gadget we've found -- the electric speed chiller.

Speed chillers are inexpensive, easy to use and work great for those who like to enjoy a glass wherever and whenever. These compact devices use thermoelectric technology (which passes an electric current through the metal the speed chiller is made of) to cool single bottles of wine quickly and efficiently. It's virtually noiseless and eco-friendly since there's no coolant being used to chill the wine. Plan on tailgating, seeing an outdoor concert or getting away to the beach or mountains? Some models even come with a power adaptor for your car. Wine for everyone!

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1. Wine Barrel and Cork Furniture

If you can't get to the vineyard, bring a little of the vineyard to you! Wine barrel furniture, including tables, chairs and bars, brings the spirit of winemaking right into your home.

In vineyards, wine is stored in oak barrels, which are sealed to let wine age and flavors blend. These containers are designed to withstand the test of time, so you know furniture made from these materials will be just as sturdy. It's all repurposed, so instead of the barrels being thrown away, they're transformed into beautiful pieces of furniture. They might even still smell a bit like the wine that was stored in them! This unique furniture will make great conversation pieces for any wine enthusiast's home.

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Wine Accessories: Lots More Information

Related Articles

  • Globe Imports. "Kitchen and Wine." (July 7, 2011) http://www.globeimports.com/Scripts/prodList.asp?idCategory=86
  • Just Wine Racks. (July 7, 2011) http://www.justwineracks.com/
  • Mustacich, Suzanne. "The Most Expensive Bottle of Wine (For Now)." Wine Spectator. May 22, 2010. (June 29, 2011) http://www.winespectator.com/webfeature/show/id/44102
  • Wine Cooler Expert. "Single Bottle Wine Coolers." (July 7, 2011) http://www.winecoolerexpert.com/single-bottle-wine-coolers.html
  • Wine Enthusiast. "Wine Barrel Furniture." (June 28, 2011) http://www.wineenthusiast.com/wine-furniture/wine-barrel-furniture.asp?tid=215&icid=TNVWNFRNTRWNBRRLFRNTR
  • Wine Enthusiast. "Wine Preservation." (June 28, 2011) http://www.wineenthusiast.com/serve-preserve/wine-preservation.asp?icid=PRDDTLTPSLLNGCTGRYLINK
  • Winestuff. "Decanters." (July 6, 2011) http://www.winestuff.com/acatalog/Decanters.html

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