Any wine drinker can attest the only thing worse than breaking a cork inside the bottle is not being able to find the corkscrew. I’ve certainly been there a time or two. Whether the cork miraculously vanished or I was traveling and completely forgot to pack a corkscrew, I’ve been left in frustration realizing I had no way to open the bottle. Or so I thought. Using a little bit of ingenuity, fellow wine lovers who have found themselves in this predicament have discovered numerous ways to pop open that bottle of wine without a corkscrew.
While some are a bit more practical, not too mention safer, they all work. So whether you’re about to open a nice bottle of that expensive red wine you’ve been saving or preparing yourself for a future corkscrew-less incident, here are the crazy ways you can open a wine bottle no corkscrew required.
Be forewarned, take extra caution when using some of these methods or you could easily wind up poking an eye out. While you can open wine without a corkscrew, some of these methods are less than practical. Worse comes to worse if you don’t have a wine key stick to a champagne or sparkling wine or better yet, a screw cap.
1. Hammer and Screw Method
When your corkscrew has gone missing, grab the old trusty hammer and a long screw to get popping. This is one of the easier methods on the list, but it will take a bit of strength. To do this properly, screw into the cork – preferably with a screwdriver – then place the backside of the hammer in between and pull out the cork.
2. Use a Serrated Knife
If you’re one to get a bit nervous watching people use sharp objects to pry something open, then you may want to leave this to the pros. Like it sounds, take a serrated knife (like a steak knife) and jam the blade into the cork at a 45-degree angle. Twist the knife upwards until the cork starts to come out. If you’re having trouble, once the cork is about an inch out remove the knife and stick it in the side of the cork. Twist in a circular motion again until the cork pops out.
3. Use Your Keys
Less cringy than the knife method, your keys will work as well. Take a key and puncture the cork at an angle. Make sure to really get it in there, then proceed to twist in a circle until the cork is free. Whalla! Now you can pour the perfect glass of wine.
4. Apply Some Heat
Odds are if you don’t have a corkscrew, you probably don’t have a blowtorch either. But if you do, you can use it to get that pesky cork free. Take the blowtorch and apply heat to the wine bottle neck directly below the cork. Watch as it miraculously forces the cork out of the bottle. This would be a fun party trick to show your guests. Just be sure to use a bit of caution. We don’t need any trips to the emergency room here.
5. Whack it with a Shoe
I know this sounds completely absurd, but apparently, when you take a shoe and whack a wine bottle with it the cork pops out. There is a method to the madness, however. What you’ll need to do is place the base of the bottle in a shoe, preferably a boot, and whack it against a wall. Once the cork has almost completely worked it’s way out, tip the bottle upright and finish pulling it out. Fail to do so and you’ll be lapping vino off of the floor instead of enjoying it in your favorite wine glass.
6. Use a Bike Pump
If you thought your bike pump was only good for tires, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to know it can also help you open a bottle of wine. This method works like this: first, take the pump needle and pierce the cork until you see it come out the other side. Then pump. As you do so, air pressure will build up in the bottle forcing the cork out. Pretty cool, huh? This is only if it has a needle attached though, otherwise you’re screwed – sorry, couldn’t resist.
Want to know how to open a beer bottle without a bottle opener? Check these methods out.