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Coravin Wine Access System Review
A common dilemma for lovers of wine is how to preserve the wine from an opened bottle. There are a few solutions available on the market but most of the times they seem to be inefficient.
In fact, preserving the wine from an opened bottle is one of the things that tormented me for a very long time.
Recently, I found out about an innovative wine preservation system named the Coravin.
Although the product was launched on the market in 2013, I only tested it a few months ago and remained impressed by the reliability of this wine preservation system when it comes to keeping in good conditions the leftover wine.
If you’re curious and want to find out more about the Coravin, read this Coravin Access System review that explains all its features and flaws in detail.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Wine Preservation System
On the market, there are available a few wine preservation systems, but before choosing any of them you should determine if you really need to invest in such a system or not.
If you usually drink the whole wine from an opened bottle in one session, then you probably don’t need a wine preservation system. It is also useless to invest in a wine preservation system if you usually drink normal quality wine and don’t keep an opened bottle for more than a couple of days.
However, if you don’t drink that much wine and you need to preserve the wine for five days or more, than choosing a reliable wine preservation system is a must.
If by now you decided that you need a wine preservation system, you should determine a few other things before deciding which system is the best for you.
First of all, you should determine how often it happens to preserve leftover wine.
If this is a very rare situation, then maybe you don’t really need to invest in a preservation system after all.
A good way to maintain the organoleptic characteristics of your wine for two or three days is to transfer the wine to a smaller bottle, cork it and chill the drink at 55°F.
Pouring the wine from one bottle to another will expose the liquid to oxygen, but this shouldn’t alter so much the taste of the wine. However, this is not an acceptable method if we’re speaking of really fine wines.
If the need to preserve the wine is more frequent, you should determine how many days you need to finish a bottle of wine.
If you don’t need more than a couple of days, then the method described above could still be a great solution.
If you need more than a couple of days but less than a week, then you could use a vacuum pump system that removes the air from the bottle before recorking it or an inert gas spray to cover the wine with an inert gas, such as argon, before recorking the bottle.
Both methods preserve the wine in optimal conditions for up to a week and can be used for all types of wine. It is advisable, however, to remove the air or cover the wine with the gas immediately after opening the bottle, to minimize the oxygen exposure as much as possible.
Now, if you are a true connoisseur or wine enthusiast with a collection of fine and rare wines, you should probably invest in a wine preservation system that can maintain almost intact all the organoleptic characteristics of your drink.
This wine preservation system could be a good choice if you just want to taste a wine then leave it for a few months, to check on how the flavor changes due to maturation.
Lastly, if you have a wine business and conduct many wine tastings, keeping an opened bottle of wine in excellent conditions is essential. In this case, you should also consider investing in the Coravin Wine Access System.
What is the Coravin Wine Access System?
The Coravin Wine Access System is an innovative wine preservation system invented by Greg Lambrecht in 2003.
Although the first prototype was released that year, Lambrecht improved and perfected the system for ten years, launching the final product on the market in 2013.
But what makes Coravin Wine Access System different than all the other wine preservation systems available out there?
Well, the name itself gives the first hint: this system is more than a wine preservation system, allowing you to access, pour and taste the wine from a bottle you actually didn’t open. Now, how cool is that?
Thanks to this innovative method, you can taste your homemade wine and see if it reached the desired level of maturation, access the wine from a very valuable bottle without the fear that you might ruin it or simply preserve in the best way an opened bottle of wine not for weeks, but for months or even years.
The system uses a fine needle to penetrate through the cork, allowing you to pour the wine into your glass without removing the cork or the metal foil that protects the neck of the bottle. In the same time, the system injects argon gas into the bottle, so there will be no oxygen contamination.
Thanks to the sealing characteristics of the natural cork, the cap will seal itself when the needle is extracted and you will be able to put the bottle back in the cellar in the original horizontal position.
For these reasons, the Coravin Wine Accessing System will help you preserve the real organoleptic characteristics of any wine, offering you an excellent tasting method especially if we speak of expensive fine wines.
Features and Benefits
Since the Coravin Wine Access System doesn’t simply open the bottle and then recork it, the system has the best preservative properties available on the market.
The wine will not be exposed to any aeration, therefore you don’t have to worry about oxidation.
You will be able to consume an opened bottle of wine over the course of a few months, or even years, without noticing any difference in the organoleptic characteristics of the wine, other than those made by the maturation of the drink.
Suitable for Most Wines
The Coravin Wine Access System can be used for the tasting of almost any type of wine, including the old fine wines, reds, whites, dessert wines and more.
However, it is not advisable to use the system for the sparkling wines, such as prosecco or champagne.
The system shouldn’t be used for wines bottled in irregularly shaped bottles either. In both cases, there is the risk that the bottle will burst.
In my opinion, the Coravin Wine Access System could be an essential tool to taste the wine during the winemaking process.
This system can be successfully used by both industrial winemakers and regular consumers who like to make their wine at home.
The system will let you taste your wine during the maturation process, helping you determine when you reached the desired taste.
The best part is that you will be able to taste the wine from the same bottle, so you will not have to waste liters of precious drink.
Essential Wine Serving Tool
If you have a wine business, the Coravin Wine Access System can help you increment your earnings in various ways.
First of all, if you have a wine tasting business, the system will let you preserve in excellent conditions an opened bottle. In this way, you can use the same bottle for multiple tasting sessions if you didn’t consume all the wine with one customer.
In the same way, it will allow you to open multiple bottles in the same time and you will not have to worry about spoiling large quantities of wine.
If you have a restaurant that sells fine wines, you will be able to offer a sample to your clients if they are not convinced about buying a whole bottle before tasting it.
The system will also allow you to sell the expensive and exclusive wine by the glass instead of the whole bottle without worrying for the leftover wine. In this way, a customer that is not ready to spend a fortune for a bottle might be convinced to buy just a glass.
Practical Wine Authentication Solution
The Coravin Wine Access System can also be successfully used on the auction market, for the authentication of the expensive bottles of wine sold by various collectors.
With this method, both the buyer and the wine authentication experts will be able to determine if the liquid in the bottle is what the label claims to be.
Easy to Maintain
The Coravin Wine Access System is really easy to clean and needs little to no maintenance.
All you have to do is to press the trigger after each use to eliminate all the wine from the system. At the end of the day, after clearing the system from the wine, you should rinse it with tap water and press the trigger to eliminate the water from the system.
If you use the system frequently, add a little vinegar to the water, rinse it, then rinse again with hot water.
Keep in mind that you should never submerge the Coravin system in any liquid. For this reason, the system cannot be cleaned in the dishwasher.
If the needle is clogged, the cleaning operation is also very simple.
The system, without the gas capsules, is compatible with air traveling. This is a great news for the wine collectors or for the sommeliers who attend different wine workshops in different parts of the world.
The gas capsules cannot be transported by plane due to safety measures, but the manufacturer can send them to your address.
Four Different Models
Whether you are a wine lover who enjoys drinking a bottle now and then, an enthusiast collector, a winemaker or a professional sommelier, you will be able to find the right Corvin Wine Access System for you.
The four choices are:
- 1Coravin Model One Wine System: dedicated to casual consumers.
- 2Coravin Model Two Wine System: the most intuitive wine access system dedicated to wine professionals and wine collectors.
- 3Coravin Model Two Elite Wine System: the same features as Model Two, but comes in different colors.
- 4Coravin Model Eight Wine System: the first Coravin system.
What Do Users Say?
The major part of the users is literally charmed by the unique characteristics of this wine preservation system.
They describe the Coravin Wine Access System as easy to use and reliable.
Many wine enthusiasts appreciated the opportunity to taste various types of wines without compromising the quality of the wines tasted.
The system is also described as being easy to clean, while the different types of needles increase the product’s versatility.
However, there were some complaints as well. The pouring speed was one of the main concerns, while other users were not completely happy with the purchase price of the gas capsules.
Some wine enthusiasts don’t consider this system suitable to be used with aged red wines because of the pouring technique that will disturb the sediment and will transfer it into the glass.
As I said above, the Coravin Wine Access System is not the only wine preservation system available on the market.
If for any reason you are not convinced about the performances of this product, here are a few cheaper alternatives.
1. Private Preserve Wine Preservation Spray
One of the most popular wine preservation systems is the Private Preserve Wine Preservation Spray.
This argon spray is extremely easy to use. Basically, as soon as you served the desired quantity of wine, you must spray the argon gas into the bottle.
This will fill the bottle with argon protecting the wine from the oxygen. Once you filled the bottle with gas, you should immediately recork it to seal the gas inside.
Although both methods use argon gas as a sealer, Coravin prevents any contact between the outside air and the wine. The Private Preserve is used after the wine already came in contact with the oxygen.
The Private Preserve lasts longer than a Coravin gas capsule.
If you drink wine occasionally and don’t keep a bottle opened for a long time, the Private Preserve is a more affordable wine preservation solution.
2. Vacu Vin Wine Saver Pump
If you usually consume an opened bottle of wine within a week or less, then you might like this Vacu Vin Wine Saver Pump.
This vacuum pump prevents wine oxidation by eliminating all the air from the bottle.
The vacuum pump comes with two convenient caps that you can use to seal the wine bottle before storage.
The solution is effective for a limited period and you don’t have to recork the bottle.
The Vacu Vin Pump removes the air after the bottle was opened. In the case of fine wines, the quality might have been compromised already.
Compared to the Coravin Wine Access System, the Vacu Vin Pump is extremely cheap.
The vacuum pump doesn’t use any type of gas, so you will not have to sustain additional costs.
3. Vinaera - World's First Electronic Wine & Spirit Aerator/Dispenser
This wine aerator and dispenser is also considered to be an excellent wine preservation system because it seals the top of the bottle and only aerates the wine that is dispensed into the glass.
Although it is an innovative solution, this system can be used to preserve wines for only two, maybe three days because the system doesn’t eliminate the air from the bottle.
While both systems are used to dispense the wine into the glass, Coravin maintains the cork on the bottle and don’t expose the wine at all.
Vinaera is also a wine aerator, being suitable for aged wines. Unfortunately, Coravin doesn’t aerate the poured wine.
Using a pump, the Vinaera system will not disturb the sediment from the red wines as much as Coravin does.
Honestly, the Coravin Wine Access System is probably the most awesome wine preservation system invented.
Being able to taste whatever wine you want knowing that you will not alter its organoleptic characteristics is something any wine lover will appreciate.
It is true that the system comes at a high price. The argon capsules are not cheap either. But if you are a true wine enthusiast, a Coravin Wine Access System is simply a must have.
Find out more about the Coravin Wine Access System here.