Haley’s Corker

As you can see from the above picture the Haley’s Corker is billed as a 5 in 1 tool for use in re-corking bottles for wine, liqueurs, olive oil, vinegar, or other such liquids. The tools are:

1) aerator

2) filter

3) pourer

4) re-corker

5) stopper

What I like about this product is it really works quite well for most of the 5 in 1 uses. It does not aerate as well as other products (which I will review in a later post) but nonetheless it does aerate but then again I wasn’t looking at this product with aeration in mind so the fact it does aerate is a plus. Another option for this product is the filtering feature which does filter but not as effective as a screen filter but again I wasn’t looking at this in the respect of filtering my wine, so again this is a plus.

On the remaining three tools however, of pourer, re-corker, and stopper it is unparalleled to any other product I have used. It is one of the best pourers with nary a drop of the delectable juice on the counter top. Using it as a re-corker has proven simple to insert and clean. And the stopper is one of the best features I like as I inserted this into one of my wine bottles of which I immediately hit with my elbow and knocked it over on the counter, lo and behold, no spillage and for me that’s real important. So, the other benefit of this is that you’re able to store the re-corked bottle on its side.

I’ve used this tool in both 750 ml & 1.5 liter bottles and more importantly it doesn’t seem to effect the aroma or taste of the wine. One note though, if you plan on using this product for screw top wines be sure to get the green colored stopper as it is specifically designed for this use. Prices vary depending on where you buy them and they’re under $10 for a single stopper. You can also purchase them right from the Haley’s Corker website if you’re looking for multiple stoppers. I give this product 5 out of 5 corks for the value. If you don’t own one I highly recommend you get some. This is the only wine stopper I’ll use when my others wear out.

Winestyr

Have you often picked up a bottle of wine at your wine merchant and left it on your wine rack for several weeks, months, years then when you went to taste it again noticing an improvement with age? So, as this was your last bottle you’re off to your wine merchant to pick up a couple of more bottles only to find out it’s sold out and he can’t reorder because it was one of those one-time deals, even the wine distributor can’t get it. This has happened to me more often than I want to remember.

Or have you visited a boutique winery while on vacation and really enjoyed their wine and brought home a bottle or two only to find you enjoyed the wine so much you wished you purchased a case when you were there but didn’t. Lo and behold, you return to the wine merchant mentioned in the above paragraph for them to order some but because it’s a boutique winery the “middle man” does not carry their products so you’re back in the same boat.

Or have you received a bottle of wine for your birthday, anniversary, or one of the holidays and wished you had a case of the delectable juice for future events? Seeing as you have exhausted the above tactics, what do you do now? Well, there may be a service that will link you to your favorite winery in such a way as to provide the consumer (that would be us) with an introductory discount to specialty, unique, or boutique wineries across the country.

This service is called Winestyr and will provide the consumer access to specialty wineries that are not normally featured in other wine websites. I recently was contacted by Winestyr’s Marketing and Public Relations intern, Maria, regarding their service and we exchanged several emails. Here’s a synopsis of what was discussed in the emails:

Witless Whiner: When will the site be available?

Maria: TBD. (although this press release from the blast! blog at http://www.blastmarketing.net/2011/11/08/winestyr-founders-announce-upcoming-launch-of-site/g  indicated a late November kick-off).

WW: What’s it about?

Maria: Helping everyone from casual drinkers to wine aficionado’s discover unique wineries and interesting wines and learn about wine in general.

WW: How did you start?

Maria: We wrote the initial business plan and approached investors for outside funding. The funding was finalized in June and we assembled the team.

WW: Why did you start this service?

Maria: Our founders are passionate about wine (one coming from the wine industry) and wanted to create a simple, approachable way to not only discover wines, but to facilitate lasting relationships directly between consumers and wineries.

WW: What do you intend to do with the site?

Maria: We will present a different winery each day to our subscriber base. We will provide the consumer with each winery’s story (WW comments – you all know how I feel about “stories”) along with information about the winemaker and pictures of the winery, vineyards, tasting room, brand, etc. Our subscribers will then have the opportunity to purchase wines directly from the featured winery at an introductory discount.

WW: What wineries will you utilize?

Maria: We are currently qualifying wineries across the country and hand picking features that our subscribers will find compelling. Whether it be the wines, the brand, or the history – the whole point is to secure features that are fun and interesting for our subscribers. We can’t wait to share our discoveries with our subscribers.

WW: What’s the benefit for those using your site?

Maria: Discovery, education, etc. Our subscribers will be presented with a different winery daily with the opportunity to become more engaged with them. Where better to buy wine than straight from the source?

Indeed, she does have a point. As of this morning the Winestyr website is dormant however, you can put in your email address (I’ve already done so) and will get updates as they occur. Once I figure out some of the logistics (yeah, I know I’m ancient when it comes to the “electronic age”) I plan on linking Winestyr so you (and me) will have easy access to their site. I believe this site has some real promise for the consumer, the winery, and the founders of Winestyr that as a consumer I plan on using their service, gee I wonder if they need consultants to visit the wineries;)

Here’s to good wine, good food, and good friends…