Friday, April 3, 2015

Wine Chiller with Stopper

Wine chiller in a clear bottle.
I've been fascinated by these wine chiller things that are a metal rod that you keep in your freezer, and then you insert the rod into your wine bottle and it chills the wine.

I wondered if they worked.

I like cool or cold wine, but I don't always have a bottle in the refrigerator. That would require me to plan ahead, and sometimes I don't think about how great a glass of wine would be until I'm actually thinking about drinking it.

And then I've got a warm bottle of wine and an empty wine glass.

So, when I got a chance to review the Wine Chiller with Stopper from Kitchen Ezentials, I figured it would be fun.

I shoved the wine chiller in the freezer - the instructions say that two hours is sufficient. It's not really big, so in theory it doesn't need a lot of time to freeze. Really, though, it makes sense to toss it back into the freezer after you use it each time so it's always ready. It doesn't take a lot of space, so you can easily store it in the freezer all the time.

The idea is that you pour out just a little bit of wine to make room for the chiller, then insert it into the bottle, and your wine will be cooled really quickly. I noticed a temperature difference but afterwards I realized I should have actually measured the temperature. Oops. More wine needed.

So I tried again a few days later. The wine that I poured out was at 68 degrees, which was room temperature. I inserted the chiller and let it sit for a few minutes while I sipped my 68-degree wine.

When I poured the next little bit, it was 63 degrees. When that was consumed, the wine was down to 62 degrees - so a total drop of 6 degrees in just a few minutes.

The instructions on the box say you can drink immediately, but on Amazon it says you should wait 5 minutes, so I tried one more test. This time I started with 70-degree water in a bottle and let the frozen chiller hang around in the bottle for 5 minutes before pouring. The water was down to 64 degrees, so it was again a drop of 6 degrees from the starting point.

Side note: Do NOT use the wine chiller in a narrow-necked bottle like the one you see in the photo above. The chiller slid in just fine, but I had a heckuva time getting it out - I all but destroyed it in the process. The only thing I can figure is that there was enough shrinkage of materials that it slid in willingly, but once it warmed up a bit, it was just a hair tighter. Oops.

I have to say that the wine definitely went from warm to nicely cool and more drinkable. The instructions note that it chills a red wine or it can keep a white wine at a properly-chilled temperature for an hour, which is nice - you can set the bottle on the table at dinner and you don't need to worry about the temperature during dinner.

How cold it will ultimately get depends on what temperature the wine is when you start - and also on how cold your freezer is, but it seems like a six-degree drop was pretty consistent in my tests.

Because of the way the chiller is constructed, the wine pours slowly and it's supposed to aerate the wine at the same time, so that's an added bonus.

Who's it for: Scatterbrained wine drinkers who need a quick way to chill their wine.

Pros: It includes a pourer, and won't take much space in the freezer. You could also use this to chill other beverages.

Cons: The pouring spout is rather tall, so if you decide to put the wine in the refrigerator with the chiller in, you'll need to have a tall enough space.

Wishes: It would be nice if there was a super-chiller model that would drop the temperature even more. I'm not sure if it's possible, though.

Source: I received this from the manufacturer for the purpose of a review.

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