The past few months have been challenging for a wine industry that relies on tasting room walk-ins and direct-to-consumer sales. It has also been challenging, though less so, for those of us who cover wine, wineries, and winemakers. We’ve all been forced to pivot. As a writer accustomed to spending my days amongst the vineyards and barrel rooms of the wineries I profile, my research and interviews were once held – and soon again shall be – within the gracious tasting rooms of Napa Valley and Sonoma County’s spectacular wineries. These days, I sign-in to Zoom or click on Instagram Live to learn about the nuances of my glass of Cab Franc or Sauvignon Blanc. And always by my side is my trusty Coravin, allowing me to taste to my heart’s content, without committing to an entire bottle.
A bottle shared between two is standard. But my husband has sworn off wine during this pandemic, declaring that once we are ‘back to normal,’ he will again imbibe, which leaves me on my wine-drinking own. During a Zoom wine tasting, it’s common to pour four different wines. But as much as I love wine, I cannot drink four bottles within the time that each remains vibrant and fresh. My answer to this admittedly first-world dilemma? Coravin.
Coravin allows wine drinkers to enjoy as much, or as little, from a bottle as he/she likes without having to commit to the entire bottle. After a Coravin pour, a cork reseals, and the bottle can be stored for weeks, months, and even years, without a negative impact on the wine within. It works like this: A hollow needle is inserted into the cork, from which wine flows into the glass as argon gas is released into the bottle, displacing wine and air. The argon, which is tasteless and odorless, ensures that any remaining wine stays fresh, with no danger of oxidation. When the Coravin needle is removed from the cork, natural compression forces the cork to form an airtight seal.
Coravin introduced its first model in 2007, and just as all technology improves over time, so too has Coravin. Though the initial Model One still works perfectly well (the argon canisters for every model – good for about 15 pours – have remained the same), Coravin’s newest Model 11 features Bluetooth technology allowing users to connect to the Delectable-provided ‘Coravin Moments’ app that not only shares information on the characteristics and regions of each wine but also uses proprietary algorithms to offer recommendations that identify unique wine pairings for user-inputted experiences – everything from food to film. A photo capture feature enables users to add wines to their virtual wine cellar with the press of a button. Additionally, an intuitive LED display allows users to optimize argon gas usage and provides charging and capsule replacement alerts.
And just a few months ago, Coravin introduced a new line of smart clamps. Using a similar technology found on the Model Eleven, the new line of SmartClamps systems no longer require users to clasp it onto the bottle. Simply push the system down directly onto the cork, tip, push the trigger, and pour. The SmartClamps systems can be found across the Model Three, Model Five, and the Model Six.
Always on-trend, Coravin too has joined the world of virtual tastings with their creation of two Instagram Live programs that air Tuesdays and Thursdays on Coravin’s Instagram Channel (@Coravin):
- Wine O’Clock Live(on Thursdays at 4 pm ET) serves to connect wine lovers around the globe over a shared passion for wine. Each week, Coravin Founder Greg Lambrecht covers various topics related to wine. Meant to explore and educate, each episode discusses passion points from food and wine pairings to tastings and includes conversations with special guests across a range of backgrounds.
- Wine O’Clock: Behind the Wine (on Tuesdays at 4 pm ET) serves to bring wine lovers behind-the-scenes conversations with winemakers. Each week, Coravin Founder Greg Lambrecht chats with his winemaker friends to learn what makes a great bottle of wine so special.