Hosting a wine party
Hosting a wine party is as much about the wine as about the cool accessories you can use to open and serve the wine. From bottle openers and glasses to decanters and coasters, a wine party is not a party without the right trimmings. As a bonus, the following wine accessories make great holiday gifts for wine lovers.
Instead of struggling to peel the stubborn foil off of a bottle of wine, use the durable yet easily maneuverable Screwpull Foil Cutter ($6.95). Engineered to be the fastest, easiest foil cutter on the market, you'll effortlessly get from foil cutting to uncorking in no time. This handy wine accessory also makes for a fun stocking stuffer. You can find the Screwpull Foil Cutter at Crate and Barrel.
Wine bottle opener
Of course you can use a classic wine opener to uncork that amazing bottle of vintage, but a better option for a special bottle is a L'Atelier du Vin Chic Lady Wine Bottle Opener ($53). The line's patented swing system uncorks the bottle with ease and a gentle, graceful presentation. Available in pretty colors -- pink, white, and blue -- these innovative wine bottle openers can be found in specialty wine retail locations in New York, San Francisco and Miami. For more information, visit AtelierduVin.com.
When pouring wine straight from the bottle, a wine ring can help you avoid any errant drips and dribbles. The chic L'Atelier du Vin Stainless Steel Wine Ring is practical, gives a great presentation, and fits the neck of any bottle. A set of two rings is only $16.95, a steal to make you look like a professional sommelier. Available in wine specialty wine shops around the country.
Decanters are typically used to serve red wine as a way to fully open up the bouquet of the wine, but decanters can also be used to serve white for a nice presentation. A classic decanter, such as Pottery Barn's Great Wine Decanter ($19), available at Pottery Barn stores and PotteryBarn.com delivers a clean, professional presentation for whatever red or white wine you may be serving. At such a budget-friendly price, you may want to get two decanters.
Instead of your typical stemmed wine glasses, spruce up your barware with an updated look: stemless wine glasses. Try Riedel's Happy O Wine 11-ounce Tumblers, available at BedBathandBeyond.com ($50.99 for a set of four). With festive-colored bases, your guests won't have trouble keeping tabs on their drinks. These fun wine glasses can be used for both red and white wine, and their stemless feature means there is less chance of spilling.
If you want to become more savvy before your party and share your knowledge with your guests, give Andrea Robinson's 2010 Wine Buying Guide for Everyone a read ($14.95). Available at Amazon.com and major book retailers, Robinson's indispensable book is brimming with reviews, tasting notes and food pairing tips for 800 bottles of wine. Leave the book out on the wine counter or coffee table for your guests to peruse. This book makes a great conversation starter and holiday gift.