Wine Gift Help
September 6, 2008 7:33 PM   Subscribe

Looking for the perfect ~$25 wine-related gift.

My friend is turning 21 next week, and I'd like to get her something related to wine. She knows more about it than I do, and for that reason I'm inclined to not just buy her a nice bottle (she can do that herself). I'm looking for a great book, gadget, doo-dad, etc.

I've thought about a rabbit-style wine opener, but she seem perfectly happy with her current corkscrew (plus, at about $40, it's just slightly outside of my price range). But, I'm willing to consider any suggestions.
posted by rossination to Food & Drink (17 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Decanter. Even the most basic ones improve red wine markedly. Target, for one, has several in your range.
posted by mkultra at 7:44 PM on September 6, 2008

Wine Saver? It lets you vacuum seal wine, so if you don't finish a (second/third) bottle, you can keep it for a day or two without the wine oxidizing into vinegar. $14 at Amazon.

Maybe combine it with a wine journal ($10), which is kind of nifty for keeping track of which wines are good.

Or maybe a carafe? This one is $30 and pretty well rated for the value.
posted by CruiseSavvy at 8:00 PM on September 6, 2008

I think a gift (perhaps, dare I say, a basket) of well-paired small cheeses, fruits, chocolates, and crackers would be a very thoughtful and customizable gift that any wine-lover would enjoy. It might take a little extra effort, but people tend to appreciate those kinds of gifts (especially if they are personally tailored) more often than not.

Most "better" grocery stores have wine stewards staffed in their wine departments and I personally have utilized their services before when looking for that perfect wine-related item. It's a thought.

Good luck!
posted by karizma at 8:11 PM on September 6, 2008

A top-notch foil cutter! Come to think of it... I'd like one of those too.
posted by 2oh1 at 8:16 PM on September 6, 2008

Might be a little over your budget, but one of those automatic bottle openers - hard to describe, but they involve minimal force on the part of the openee. Or, and this was quite popular with a friend of mine, an agitator to stir the wine up. Apparently it really does add to the flavor. And finally, a thermometer or mini breathalyzer.
posted by djgh at 8:18 PM on September 6, 2008

The one-glass-at-a-time decanter.
posted by zaebiz at 8:39 PM on September 6, 2008 [1 favorite]

zaebiz: "The one-glass-at-a-time decanter."

Looks like the Buy link isn't working. Just search for Versovino Wine Decanter and look for specials. Home page is here.
posted by zaebiz at 8:43 PM on September 6, 2008

Almost no one I know uses a rabbit-ear type corkscrew (that doesn't mean anything) . Most use a standard wine key. That said, the few people I know that have a CO2 opener rave about it. Las I checked they were 20-25$ at World Market or well stocked wine shops, some really are rather nice looking.
posted by piedmont at 8:55 PM on September 6, 2008

I'd avoid the rabbit ear corkscrews if I were you, most of them aren't nearly as effective as the old waiter's friends (double hinge ones).

Maybe a nice set of wine glasses? Or a decanter? Both will be well used, and much appreciated. I bought my dad a decanter last year and it's had some great mileage thus far.
posted by twirlypen at 9:28 PM on September 6, 2008

The homes of the wine enjoyers of America are filled to the brim with dusty, unused wine-related gadgets, doo-dads, books, glasses, and related ephemera.

Get her a bottle of wine!
posted by staggernation at 9:37 PM on September 6, 2008

I would definitely go with the decanter!
posted by docmccoy at 10:00 PM on September 6, 2008

A decanter is the way to go.
posted by foodgeek at 10:03 PM on September 6, 2008

A wine tote for taking her favorite wines to those BYOB restaurants.
posted by Joleta at 10:43 PM on September 6, 2008

A Screwpull: either the table model or pocket model. The table model is more convenient to use, the pocket model is more portable. Either works 5x better than most corkscrews.
posted by Nelson at 7:43 AM on September 7, 2008

Riedel makes decent stemless wine glasses (i.e. just the tulip portion of the glass) that you can find for about $25 a pair on Amazon. See here.
posted by letourneau at 8:33 AM on September 7, 2008

I like wine a lot and I'd like a wine rack like this one from target. They are available at all different prices, with lots around $25. If she doesn't have a lot of space, a wall-mount one would be nice.
posted by selfmedicating at 9:03 AM on September 7, 2008

Please don't get her any sort of corkscrew other than a standard double hinged wine key. They are all gratuitous wastes of money, and most are far less efficient.

As many people have already said, a decanter or a nice set of Riedels would be spot on.
posted by solipsophistocracy at 10:06 AM on September 7, 2008

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