Understanding the Different Types of Manual Wine Bottle Openers

You might not think it, but there are actually a lot of different types of manual wine bottle openers available, each of which has its own list of benefits. If you’re considering purchasing a manual wine opener, check out this quick guide covering all of the most common types to aid you in your decision.

Simple Corkscrew Openers

This is the most basic type of wine bottle opener you can find, and usually consists of a winding metal component known as a corkscrew attached to a simple handle. All you do is drive the corkscrew into the cork by turning in in a screwing motion (hence the name), and then pull out the cork once you drive the opener in deep enough.

These are very difficult to use because they require complete manual effort to remove the cork. They are also among the cheapest models available, because they are so basic.

Waiter’s Corkscrew Openers

The variation of the corkscrew uses some simple physics to make the removal aspect of the cork considerably easier. You still need to drive the corkscrew into the cork by turning it, but instead of pulling it out straight you use a fulcrum system to get some leverage and slide the cork out with indirect force.

These models are typically inexpensive, and include extra built-in features such as bottle cap openers and foil cutters. However, they can be difficult for some people to use because you must line up a notch on the leverage arm with the lip of the bottle, and the opener can sometimes slip off during use.

Wing Corkscrew Openers

This style of corkscrew opener takes a more advanced approach to both driving the corkscrew into the cork and removing it. It has a special cased area that houses the actual corkscrew and uses a key at the top for driving, so it’s easier to hold it in place and ensure the screw drives in straight. As you turn the key, two levers on the side rise upwards, thanks to simple internal gears; this gives this device the “wing” or “butterfly” name.

Once you drive the corkscrew completely into the cork, you simple press down on the levers to pull the cork out of the bottle. This process is much safer and easier than the other types of corkscrews, since there is less risk of the opener sliding around and coming loose during the uncorking.

Levered Opener

This type of opener combines the concept behind an automatic wine opener with the functionality of a manual model. They have a slightly larger size than other manual models, but require much less effort because you drive the corkscrew into the cork by squeezing a lever on the handle. It’s a more precise procedure that reduces the risk of crooked drives and broken corks.

Once you drive the corkscrew in, you simply pull up on the second lever and pull the cork out with a smooth motion. The biggest downside with these models is that they are more expensive than other types.

Two-Pronged Openers

This type of manual wine opener works in a completely different manner than the others, as it doesn’t include a corkscrew at all. Instead, you insert two flat prongs onto either side of the cork between the bottle and not directly into the cork. Once fully inserted, you simply rock the cork back and forth to loosen it and pull it out. These models are usually inexpensive, but can be very difficult to use for some people and may not always remove the cork smoothly.

Closing Points

Now that you know about all the different types of wine openers, it’s important to think about your overall strength level in order to find one that you can easily and comfortably operate on your own. Otherwise, you might hurt yourself or simply be unable to uncork the bottles at all.