Wanting only a glass or two of wine puts drinkers in a tough spot. Once the bottle’s opened, the wine starts to oxidize and lose its flavor. No rubber stopper will halt the process, leaving partial bottles to go to waste. Greg Lambrecht, a medical-device entrepreneur, figured out a way to solve the problem. The devices that Lambrecht once built used a special needle to access implants without creating permanent punctures. His Coravin Wine Access System uses the same idea to draw wine from a bottle without uncorking it.
To pour a glass, a user places the Coravin on top of a bottle, pushing its hollow 2mm-thick needle through the cork. A capsule then releases argon, an inert nonpoisonous gas, into the bottle. The pressure forces out the wine. In all, it takes about 20 seconds per pour; when the needle is removed, the cork reseals itself.
Over the past decade, Lambrecht has conducted blind tests with sommeliers to compare wine accessed with Coravin to unopened bottles of the same vintage. Most perceived no taste difference. Meanwhile, Lambrecht has used Coravin to drink his bottle of inspiration, a 1990 Paul Jaboulet Aine Hermitage la Chapelle, in its entirety—one glass at a time, over three years.
Coravin Wine Access System
Time to pour: 20 seconds (est.)
Lifetime: 15 5-oz. glasses/capsule