For those who like to savor a given vintage, the connoisseur and enthusiast of elegant whites and full-bodied reds, people who live to commune with the bottle – wine lovers – what’s a good gift idea?
If you know someone who’s really into wine tasting, there are a number of things that you can buy them to help them pursue this interesting and delicious hobby.
As we’ve watched kitchens turn out elegant cuisine and pair it with a good bottle, we’ve thought about the best gear and accessories to support an excellent wine collection and tasting events. Here’s our list.
Getting the best wine glasses is often essential to enjoying your investment in fine wines.
Why is a good glass important? Because wines have what one of our top chefs calls “volatile aroma compounds,” and having the right tools and resources unlocks flavor and aroma in specific ways. If you’ve ever seen a professional sommelier do it, you see that there’s an art to pouring, and a good wineglass helps to accommodate that process. It sets the stage for the experience that the wine drinker has, in a real sense.
Check out stemless or stemmed wine glasses depending on your wine lover’s preference.
How you store your wine is important, and for a true chooser of fermented grape beverages, storing it in style might be a big part of the equation.
An elegant wooden wine rack or other similar accessory allows for long-term storage, with proper angling and positioning to help prevent certain problems with corks and other issues. Bon Appetit!
As a nice portable gift for everyday use, a wine cooler can be a popular gift idea for both red and white wine fans, as well as patrons of the rose style.
However, experts contend that many red wines can benefit from some chilling, too. Some varieties of red wine, for example, can be presented at 55 to 65 degrees farenheit, which will refine the taste a bit. Some of this, of course, is subjective – some people want a red, especially a heavier red, at room temperature, so that they can taste everything to the fullest. But in many ways, narrowing the taste through a slight chill can help a wine to present better overall. So that adds to how the wine cooler is useful for a hobbyist.
If you ask people who’ve done a lot of home tastings over the years, or someone who has worked in a professional kitchen, they’re likely to tell you that the capability of a wine opener is critically important for presentation.
It’s hard for a lot of average people with without professional experience to keep from running into problems with inferior corkscrews and wine openers that shred the cork and leave them with very unappealing results.
The best designs will accommodate that quick pop of the cork, to make your people look like they know exactly what they’re doing.
There’s nothing like a high-quality wine aerator to make an amateur look like a pro, or to make a professional kitchen look good when it comes to serving fine wines.
The aerator has a very particular job – it expedites or speeds up the process of getting key amounts of oxygen into the wine, to really release its flavors and “open it up,” as aficionados would say.
To be sure, there are other natural processes for aerating wine. However, they take quite a bit of time. Some wine SMEs would suggest that you let a red wine breathe for 20 to 30 minutes. In the old days, people used decanters or just swirled the wine around the glass for a while, in order to open it up. The Taylor Black Houdini wine aerator does this immediately, with a quick rush of oxygen that strategically controls the oxygen content. So you get the taste that you want immediately, and you can serve without delay.
There are other natural tips for opening a wine up, too – for example, pour into the center of the glass, and allow for a particular amount of ‘fall’ or cascade from the bottle. But the aerator, again, offers a consistent and universal control of this process and better time management when you’re serving or consuming.
Wine Bottle Stoppers
A nice wine bottle stopper is attractive, but it also keeps excessive alcohol from creeping in and having an impact on a good vintage. As you store the wine, you want the bottle to be securely closed. The stopper is useful here.
Realistically, many wine servers are going to be offering a red or white wine alongside some complementary dining fare. Charcuterie is one of the hottest new trends in sampling cuisine. A good cutting board and knife can help you to show off any number of specialty cured meats, alongside whatever else goes well with your wines, like cheese, nuts or grapes.
Whether you’re looking for tools for pouring or storing, tasting or serving a big crowd all night, Chefs’ Toys has the gear that supports a good wine event and complements a home collection. We are “for chefs, by chefs,” – we’re kitchen people! Take a look and select the choices that will suit your wine enthusiast.