Ask Whit: Temperamental Corks

Today, Sayle wants to know how to excavate delicate corks from older bottles as well as come to the rescue of stubborn corks that decide to split in half while opening. Jerks!

Q: I had a wonderful but older bottle of wine that a friend brought the other night. I am not sure the bottle had been kept on its side the whole time it was stored because when I went to open it, half of the cork broke off and was still in the bottle. When this happens, when you split a cork, do you have some super-Whit-awesome way of getting the cork out without losing one little drop of vino? Thanks! – Sayle, NYC

A: This questions has two answers. In regards to older bottles with corks that might crumble in the face of an average corkscrew- get ye an Ah So cork puller. Also spelled Ah-So and sometimes referred to as a “Butler’s Friend.” Your follow-up question might be, “Why would you call this thing an Ah So?” Good question. I have no idea. Ah, so I can use this thing to open wine? Ah, So. Let’s drink! Who knows. What I DO know is that it works and everyone should have one on hand. Just in case! If you need visuals of how it’s done, check out this heavily bejeweled man open a bottle of 1986 Ridge with an Ah So.

The part two of this answer covers rescuing a broken cork from the neck of any bottle without pushing it into the wine. I will refer you to this post I wrote last year. Try not to sweat as much as I did.

If you have any questions, leave me a comment here, tweet at me or hit me up on my Facebook page. Or send a note in a bottle. So many options!

  • The Cuisinerd
    July 23, 2012

    This reminds me of the time I texted you a photo from Utah asking how to open my broken cork of a wine. This is slightly a better option than bashing it over the hotel tub….

  • Sayle
    July 24, 2012

    Thank you, Whitney!!!!!

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