Top 3 corkscrew alternatives
I am sure you know how to open a wine bottle like a pro with a corkscrew. But then again, sometimes you don't have one: a picnic in the forest, an impromptu evening in a hotel room, a drink at the office... If you've never experienced this kind of situation before, you're not safe from it happening one day. So here are three tips to prepare for it.
They'll help you play MacGyver with your friends and colleagues!
With a shoe
One of the best known methods of opening a bottle of wine without a corkscrew is to use a shoe. Yes, it may come as a surprise, but it works. Here's the procedure: remove the paper around the cork and place your bottle in the heel of the shoe. Then place the shoe against a wall, holding the bottle firmly with one hand. With the other hand, start hitting the bottle gently in small jolts, avoiding excessively violent gestures so as not to break the bottle (which would be a shame). After 5 minutes, gently remove the bottle and observe the cork. If everything has gone well, the cork should now be two thirds of the way out. Now all you have to do is finish the job by hand. The success of this simple but effective technique is due to the fact that repeated shaking causes the air in the bottle to rise and trap the cork. And so, under the effect of pressure, the cork comes out.
The only conditions for an effective result are that the shoe must be hollow, so that the bottle holds well when you hit it against the wall. If you only have flip-flops or open-heeled shoes handy, you can hit the bottom of the bottle with your shoe, but the cork will take longer to come out. Also note that this method is much more effective with corks oak than with plastic stoppers.
Another accessory that proves to be a good alternative to the corkscrew: keys. If you're at the end of an evening and you've lost or forgotten yours, there's not much we can do for you. But as in principle you do not drink alone, you will always find someone who has a set of keys to lend you. They will be perfect, especially since you can use them to remove the collar from the cork. Stick one of the keys lightly into the cork by tilting it slightly to the side. Push it in as deeply as possible. Then gently pull it out until the cork comes out.
The only requirements for an effective result are a minimum of force and a lot of dexterity. If the nickname of Sid from Ice age sticks more to your skin than that of Hercules, suggest the idea to your most resourceful friend. You will certainly not be in charge, but you will have given him the idea. You will therefore remain the mastermind of the operation, which in itself is already very good!
With a screw and a hammer
This is probably one the safest method on this list, but it does require some patience and strength. You simply take a screw, preferably a long one, and screw it into the cork until there is about an inch or so of the screw left showing. Then you take the backside of the hammer, lock it under the screw and pull the cork out.
Do you know any other way to open a bottle of wine without a corkscrew? Let us know in comments or on our Facebook page.