- CindyJ Mar 21, 2007 08:03 AM
I have a couple of favorite corkscrews. At home it's my Rabbit-wannabe, purchased for ~$10 at BB&B. It works like a charm. For portability I take my 3-piece Screwpull. But there have been several times in restaurants when my wine has been uncorked with a corkscrew that looks like your typical "waiter's friend" except that it's got a hinged lever that provides two tiers of leverage when the cork is being removed. In other words, this hinge eliminates the need to lift the cork out partway, screw the worm further in, and remove the cork the rest of the way, as is sometimes necessary with a waiter's friend. But, whenever I've asked where I can get one of these for myself, I've always been told that they're promotional items, provided to the restaurant by their wine distributor.
So -- who makes these, and where can I buy one? Better still, how can I finagle a promotional freebie? BTW, I once thought I HAD found it -- at Zabars in NYC. It had a hinge and LOOKED like the ones I'd seen in restaurants. So I bought it, but when I got it home I found it didn't work at all like what I'd expected.
Most wine accessory stores should stock them.
Here in Quebec, every branch of the SAQ (liquor control board) sells a low-end Pulltaps two-step model for about US$7. They seem well constructed and have a solid, Teflon-coated worm, though I prefer the hinge action on a promo corkscrew I once received from a wine-store owner. www.pulltaps.com
If worse comes to worst, you can order the Pulltaps and other brands online. Surf on over to www.corkscrew.com or google "pulltaps".
The one that seems to work best is called a "Pulltap". If you're picking one in person make sure the hinge works easily (not loose, but easily). The idea is to lift the cork part-way out with the shorter teeth, then engage the longer ones for the rest of the cork. "Engaging' requires that the hinge not need major muscle power, because you have to change the angle slightly for it to work best. What that means will be clear when you use it. Sounds like maybe too much to worry about, but they really are the best as they work great with any length of cork.