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An All-Inclusive Guide On How To Use 12 Different Corkscrews

An All-Inclusive Guide On How To Use 12 Different Corkscrews

December 13 2020

12 different types of corkscrews

  • How to Use a Wing Corkscrew
  • How to Use a Waiter’s Corkscrew
  • How to Use a Two-Step Corkscrew
  • How to Use a Laguiole Corkscrew
  • How to Use a Corkscrew Without a Lever
  • How to Use an Oneida Corkscrew
  • How to Use a Wall Mount Corkscrew
  • How to Use a Wine Cork Extractor
  • How to Use a Tabletop Corkscrew Puller
  • How to Use an Air Pump Corkscrew
  • How to Use a Continuous Pull Corkscrew
  • How to Use an Electric Corkscrew

All corkscrews have a single objective: to help you remove the cork from the bottle so you can enjoy your favorite alcohol at your home bar . But why, with a task so simple and straightforward, are there so many different types of corkscrews? Well, each type has advantages and while the result is the same, the steps on how to use a corkscrew differs.

good cook travel corkscrew how to use

The basic principle is that you need the worm or the pointy screw-like part of the corkscrew to go into the cork so you can pull it out. But alas, science and technology have provided us with more options on how to open a wine bottle or any other corked bottle for that matter. We now have a wide array of options from old-fashioned corkscrews to electric wine bottle openers . This post features 12 of the best corkscrews available to help you make an informed choice.

1. How to Use a Wing Corkscrew

A wing corkscrew has a top handler where the center part of the corkscrew is the driller, enveloped inside two flaps and two levers. These twin arms provide extra leverage to remove wine corks with ease. These winged corkscrews are also referred to as “corkscrews with arms”.

Wing Corkscrew

  • Simply position the opener over the bottle. Twist the handle to insert the auger into the cork and raise the opener's wings. 
  • Using both hands, push the wings down. 
  • To remove the cork from the spiral, squeeze the sides against the cork and turn the handle counter-clockwise.

Watch the video below to see the procedure in action.

2. How to Use a Waiter’s Corkscrew

A waiter's corkscrew has the main staff that has a driller, a retractable knife, and a lever to place on the bottle's lip for a smoother pull.

Waiter’s Corkscrew

  • Put the bottle on a table or flat surface and remove the foil.
  • Carefully extend the double-hinged part and extend the worm so that it forms a T-shape with the handle. 
  • Holding the bottle with your non-dominant hand, use your dominant hand to center the tip of the worm in the middle of the cork. 
  • Twist the worm clockwise into the cork until the last loop is just above the top of the cork, trying to keep the worm straight as you do so.
  • Hook the first notch of the hinge point closest to the handle on the neck of the bottle. Then pull up on the handle with your dominant hand until the cork can’t rise any higher. Then hook the hinge point at the end of the lever on the neck of the bottle and repeat the motion. The cork should slide out cleanly.
  • To remove the cork from the corkscrew, hold the cork with your non-dominant hand and twist until the worm screw is out of the cork.

For more tricks on opening a bottle with a waiter’s corkscrew, watch the video below:

3. How to Use a Two-Step Corkscrew

A two-step corkscrew also called a “twist and pull” corkscrew, is actually identical to the waiter's corkscrew. It has the same main staff with a retractable knife, a driller, and a lever. It is a favorite in the beverage industry due to its ease of use coupled with its small stature easily tucked in a waiter’s pocket. This corkscrew contains all tools that are necessary to properly open a bottle and provide an elegant look while doing so.

Two-Step Corkscrew

  • Using the retractable knife, open the lid of the bottle. Do this by dragging the tip of the knife in a circular motion around the neck of the bottle. 
  • Remove the foil. 
  • Next, place the tip of the screw onto the cork slightly askew so that when you twist the screw, it goes into the middle of the cork and not sideward. 
  • Continue twisting the screw into the cork with even pressure. 
  • Place the first hinge of the screw on the lip of the bottle, leave it in place with your hand, and pull the cork up until halfway.
  • Finally, move the second hinge on the lip of the bottle until the cork is out.

Some people ignore removing the cork from the corkscrew and leave it broken or crumbled. However, it is important to remove the cork from the corkscrew once it is out of the bottle and keep it intact. So should you not be able to finish the bottle, you can re-cork it to maintain its freshness and taste.

To remove the cork from the corkscrew, unscrew it from the tool being careful not to break it. Also, make sure not to poke yourself with the sharp point of the corkscrew. Examine the cork for possible brittleness or damage so you may know whether or not you can use it again.

Below is a 1-minute video on how to use a two-step corkscrew:

4. How to Use a Laguiole Corkscrew

The Laguiole corkscrew has a simple yet efficient structure. It is made up of one main staff from where the retractable knife and the driller can be pulled out. This corkscrew has no lever but still does the job.

Laguiole Corkscrew

  • First, open the cap with the knife part of the screw. 
  • After opening the bottle, place the screw in a horizontal position and then dig the screw down. 
  • Clip the cork's left side to lever the cork and pull it up using the right side. 

Below is a visual guide on the procedure:

5. How to Use a Corkscrew Without a Lever

A corkscrew without a lever is also called a pocket corkscrew or a travel corkscrew. It is a subset of the screwpull corkscrew category and is one of the most affordable options you’ll find. Instead of a wide handle to grip onto, it has a simple circle that’s big enough for you to slip your finger into to pull up. This type of corkscrew includes a cover, so you can slip it into your purse or pocket and take it with you wherever you go. 

The corkscrew without a lever mainly uses a driller and a cylindrical container. The cylindrical container of the driller is placed on top of the driller, creating a T-position. The container then serves as a handler for twisting the driller downwards.

Corkscrew Without a Lever

  • Simply drill the cork until a quarter of the driller remains. 
  • Then pull the driller up with the handler.

Watch the video below on how to use a pocket corkscrew:

6. How to Use an Oneida Corkscrew

The Oneida corkscrew is one of the most popular one-lever corkscrews. Most one-lever corkscrews only require two steps: one forward motion where the worm is inserted into the cork and another that pulls the cork from the bottle. The advantage of using a one-lever corkscrew is the amount of control they provide as the handle firmly holds the neck of the bottle while the corkscrew is in use.

Oneida Corkscrew

  • Cut the foil under the lip of the bottle.
  • Remove the foil from the bottle’s neck.
  • With the lever in the up position, place the corkscrew on top of the wine bottle.
  • Push the lever down to insert the worm into the cork.
  • Once the lever is all the way down, pull the handle back up to remove the cork from the wine bottle.
  • To remove the cork from the worm, lift the corkscrew off the bottle and flip the handle up and down a few times.

Here’s a video on how to use a lever-style corkscrew.

7. How to Use a Wall Mount Corkscrew

Wall mount corkscrews mount to a beam or wall for higher stability and safety when removing corks from a bottle. They can be configured for different levels of penetration depths. This type is ideal for partial wine cork extraction at banquet room functions where the wine is placed on the table before the event begins.

Wall Mount Corkscrew

  • Insert the neck of the wine bottle into the cradle.
  • Pull down on the handle to insert the corkscrew.
  • Return the handle to the starting position to pull the cork out.
  • Once the bottle is removed from the cradle, the cork will fall to the floor.

8. How to Use a Wine Cork Extractor

Wine cork extractors are prongs that slide down between the wine bottle and cork to remove it from the bottle. They are commonly used for vintage corks made from natural cork. The good thing about extractors is they won't damage vintage wine corks or cause them to break apart dropping crumbs into the wine. Because they’re small, these extractors are best for keeping behind the bar or in aprons for easy access. 

Wine Cork Extractor

  • Slide the extractor prongs between the cork and the inside of the bottle’s neck while firmly holding the neck of the bottle.
  • While applying light force to the handle, shimmy the prongs down using a left to right motion.
  • Once the extractor is fully inserted, twist and pull upward to remove the cork.
  • To remove the cork from the extractor, simply slide it out from between the prongs.

Watch this video on how to use a wine cork extractor:

9. How to Use a Tabletop Corkscrew Puller

A tabletop corkscrew puller can be attached to — you guessed it —  a table or counter for sturdiness and support. It provides added torque and can remove screws faster and with less effort than any other types of corkscrews. The tabletop corkscrew is ideal for high-volume establishments like bars and restaurants.

Tabletop Corkscrew Puller

  • Insert the wine bottle in the corkscrew.
  • Pull down on the handle to insert the corkscrew worm.
  • Release the handle to uncork the wine bottle.
  • Return the handle to the up position and the cork will fall off the worm.

10. How to Use an Air Pump Corkscrew

The mechanism of this corkscrew is anchored on forcing air into the space between the wine bottle and the cork. The device pumps air and the pressure will force out the cork (high school Physics in action). This pressure pushes a sharp, thick long needle through the cork. 

Air Pump Corkscrew

  • Insert the wine bottle’s neck into the cradle.
  • To insert your corkscrew, pull down on the handle.
  • To begin pulling out the cork, return the handle to its starting position.

Here’s an instructional video that shows exactly how an air pump corkscrew works:

11. How to Use a Continuous Pull Corkscrew

Continuous pull corkscrews work by using a twist motion to force the worm into the cork. Furthermore, the sides of a continuous pull corkscrew sit on the neck of the bottle. Other styles have hinges on the handles so you can squeeze them around the bottle's neck to get a tighter, more stable grip. Because of their small size and user-friendly design, these corkscrews are great for front-of-house use by servers and bartenders.

Continuous Pull Corkscrew

  • Place the base of the corkscrew over the top of your wine bottle.
  • Turn the handle clockwise to insert the worm into the cork.
  • As the worm screws into the cork, slide the sides over the neck of the bottle for a better grip.
  • Continue turning the handle clockwise until the cork is fully extracted.
  • To remove the cork from the corkscrew, simply turn the handle counterclockwise.

12. How to Use an Electric Corkscrew

If you don’t mind being “futuristic” even for the simple chore of removing a cork, then electric corkscrews are the choice. It’s a simple push-button operation that makes it possible for anyone to open a bottle of wine. They’re great for opening bottles of wine and looking all cool and snazzy behind your home bar. But they’re not just for show — electric corkscrews are also helpful for people with arthritis or weak hands.

Electric Corkscrew

  • Place the electric corkscrew on top of the wine bottle’s neck while making sure you’re keeping the corkscrew vertical.
  • Turn the electric corkscrew on and it will automatically insert the worm and remove the cork.
  • Remove the corkscrew from the top of the bottle once the cork has been removed.
  • Reverse the corkscrew motion to remove the cork from the worm.

Below is the electric corkscrew in action:

Most alcohol lovers would agree that a great drinking experience starts with a seamless process of opening a bottle. You don’t want to get frustrated with figuring out how to use a corkscrew on what could otherwise be a relaxing moment with your favorite drink . Luckily, there are plenty of options on how to open a wine bottle and it just boils down to which is more suitable for your needs.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also check out the guide on  How to Open A Wine Bottle Without A Corkscrew .  Did you find this article helpful? Share it with your friends or leave your comments below.

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Wine Openers

How to Use a Waiter’s Style Corkscrew

How to Use a Waiter’s Style Corkscrew

Jump To: Step-by-Step Instructions | Video

The waiter’s style corkscrew is the most traditional wine opener, largely preferred by restaurant and hospitality professionals. Though small in size, its simple design makes this gadget deceivingly complex for first-timers to use! 

It may take some practice to use the waiter’s style corkscrew with flourish and finesse; but don’t be discouraged. Once you have the basics down, you’ll understand why this tool is a must-have for your home bar!

How to Open Wine with a Waiter’s Style Corkscrew

  • Put your thumb or index finger at the back of the blade
  • Place the knife just below the lip, and slice horizontally halfway around the neck of the bottle
  • Using the same starting point, cut the other half of the foil in the opposite direction
  • Make a final, vertical cut up across the protruding lip to the top of the bottle
  • Tuck the blade back into the corkscrew
  • Pull away the foil capsule to expose the cork
  • Open the corkscrew so that it makes a T-shape by lifting the double-hinged piece and pulling out the worm
  • Grip the corkscrew by the top of the T, with the worm pointing down between your fingers
  • Pierce the center of the cork with the tip of the worm
  • Apply pressure as you twist the corkscrew counter-clockwise down into the cork
  • Continue turning until at least ¾ of the corkscrew is inserted in the cork
  • Bend the hinge so that the curved notch sits on the lip of the bottle
  • Hold the notch against the bottle lip for leverage with one hand; with the other, pull the corkscrew upwards
  • If using a two-step waiter’s key, switch to the second notch and finish pulling the cork out of the bottle
  • Twist the cork off the worm by hand
  • Drink and enjoy!

How-to Video Tutorial & Transcript

Hi, I’m Marshall Tilden with The Wine Enthusiast, and today we’re gonna learn how to use a waiter’s style corkscrew. These corkscrews are really the most traditional way to open a bottle of wine. They come in various [styles], makes and quality levels, but they all have basically the same parts in order to open the bottle: They’re all gonna have the hinge at the top; they’ll have

the worm—or the spiral—which will drill into the cork; and the blade, which is going to help remove [the foil] off the top of the bottle. So, let’s see how they work! 

First step is going to be to take the top of the foil off. There’s a couple of notches on the bottles where the cork goes in, and some different schools of thought [on where to cut the foil]. You’re going to put your pointer finger behind the blade here for a little bit of guidance. I go under the first notch here, and you really should [also]. The reason is: If you go off the top notch—if there’s some foil that frays, which can happen when you cut it off and you’re pouring the wine out—and it touches the foil, it can kind of taint the wine. So you just take the foil cutter and put it up to that top notch. Go around a few times, once or twice, and the foil comes right off. 

Put the blade away, making sure not to hurt yourself, and pull out the spiral part of the corkscrew. You know, hold the bottle firmly. Use your middle finger here to kinda guide the worm into the bottle and get it lined up so it goes right into the middle. Once it’s in there, start drilling down. 

You’ll just simply turn the corkscrew down… You don’t want to go all the way down, maybe about three-quarters of the way, and once you’ve done so—see the hinge, a lot of times, will have a couple of notches. You might not be able to get to the first notch—or you may, and that helps you out a little bit—and then you can hit the second notch on the bottom here. 

Put it on the lip of the bottle and then you’re simply gonna pull up with the corkscrew. Nice and slowly, you don’t want to go too hard. If you do, you get that big popping sound, you can spill the wine all over. Comes right out of the bottle, nice and simple. Once you’re done, just twist the cork right off the worm. 

You’ll find that most servers and restaurants and hospitality setups will use these. They travel easy, they’re simple to use, and, as you can see, it’s just kind of a cool way to open a bottle. This is the Elite Corkscrew. Like I said, they come in all different styles. This has a very nice wood trim on the front. There’s our Wine Enthusiast professional Waiter’s Corkscrew, which is sort of an entry-level, so you’re gonna find various styles of these on wineenthusiast.com, and if you have any questions just give us a call at 800-356-8466. Cheers.

Waiter’s Corkscrews from Wine Enthusiast

Their small size makes the waiter’s style corkscrew a very economical wine opener. You can find them very cheap at most liquor stores, drugstores or department stores with a kitchen section. Of course, we recommend choosing a quality product from a trusted brand—one that will supply the necessary force to pop out the wine cork fully intact, and that you’ll feel good about using in front of house guests, partners, and friends.

Wine Enthusiast’s curated selection of waiter’s corkscrews includes openers featuring handsome polished wood, strong stainless steel, and the ability to personalize each piece for a thoughtful gift. Contact us with any questions you may have while shopping!

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The Benefits of Each Style of Wine Opener

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Expressions: The WineExpress.com Blog

Wine 101: How to Use a Waiter’s Corkscrew (Video)

While the Waiter’s corkscrew may not be the most innovative bottle-opening tool, it stands the test of time for its functionality (it just works!) and its small footprint. While electric corkscrews and lever corkscrews require less effort, the waiter’s corkscrew folds up easily and fits in a “waiter’s” pocket (no secret how its name came to be). Which means it fits nicely into your kitchen drawers without occupying counter space.

But the steps to use a Waiter’s corkscrew are not obvious to novices, so we had Josh redo one of his most popular how-to videos , originally produced in 2009

10 years later, Josh is older and wiser but the steps are the same! If you aren’t sure how to use a Waiter’s corkscrew don’t be embarrassed. Watch our under-2-minute video and follow the steps.

How to Use a Waiter’s Corkscrew:

  • Press the foil cutter against the neck of the bottle and twist around the neck to remove the foil.
  • Place the point of the worm into the center of the cork and start to drill down until you reach a good place where the hing hits the top of the bottle
  • Rest the hinge on top and then pull the backside of the corkscrew up. The cork should pull up with you. Pull towards you rather than away to avoid bending and potentially snapping the cork.

If you have a particularly wet or dry cork and you run into a snafu where it breaks in half, don’t panic! Watch our video on How to Remove a Broken Cork and you’ll be on your way to sipping in no time!

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Bill Conway

You just show video on the waiters cork screws. You have been having sales on wine cabinets, glass ware, when are the the cork screws on sale?

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How to Open a Wine Bottle 3 Different Ways

You can use a waiter's corkscrew, a winged corkscrew or an electric wine opener.

preview for How to Open a Bottle of Wine

We've been independently researching and testing products for over 120 years. If you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Learn more about our review process.

How to Open a Bottle of Wine with a Waiter's Corkscrew

how to open a wine bottle  waiters corkscrew

Waiter's corkscrews, also known as wine keys, are our Test Kitchen's preferred way to open a wine bottle. They're slim, portable and relatively inexpensive.

  • Carefully release the foil cutter from the base of the corkscrew – it often looks like a serrated bird's beak knife.
  • Place the cutting edge on the neck of the wine bottle below the lip. (We like to place ours about 1/2-inch below the lip though some recommend halfway below the top of the lip to get similar results to a foil cutter. Leaving some of the foil intact helps prevent drips when pouring.)
  • Firmly, but carefully, press the knife against the bottle and rotate the bottle to cut the foil and form a deep indentation that will allow you to easily pull off the top.
  • Tuck away the knife.
  • Once the foil is removed, release the corkscrew, a.k.a. the worm, and place its tip in the center of the cork. (The closer to the center of the cork, the better your chances of keeping the cork intact.)
  • Hold the wine bottle steady and rotate the corkscrew clockwise into the cork until it's about 3/4 of the way through.
  • Lower the lever and place the notch of the hinge onto the lip of the wine bottle. Use it as leverage to lift up the lever and pull upwards to remove the rest of the cork. If your waiter's corkscrew has two notches, use the shorter notch first and then the one below it once you've released more of the cork.

How to Open a Bottle of Wine with a Winged Corkscrew

how to open a wine bottle  winged corkscrew

Winged corkscrews are simple to use. If you have a foil cutter, use it to remove the foil (instructions below) or simply use your hands to twist, loosen and release the whole thing. Avoid using a paring knife or dinner knife because both could easily slip.

  • Place the tip of the corkscrew onto the center of the cork and use your hand to stabilize it and the bottle while using your other hand to twist the top of the corkscrew into the cork.
  • Once the wings fully lift, use both hands to push down the wings and remove the cork.

How to Open a Bottle of Wine with an Electric Wine Opener

how to open a wine bottle  electric corkscrew

  • Ensure your electric corkscrew is charged.
  • If it comes with a foil cutter, place the foil cutter on the top of the wine bottle and squeeze it to cut the foil by rotating the cutter or bottle – whichever you prefer.
  • Once removed, place the tip of the corkscrew into the center of the cork, hold the bottle with the other and press the wine opener's button to release the corkscrew straight into the cork.
  • Some electric corkscrews require you to press the button again to remove the cork from the bottle, while others allow you to simply pull up the whole wine opener with the cork inside.
  • Always remember to release the cork from the wine opener to make the next time a smooth process.

In the market for a new wine opener? Take a look at a few of our favorites:

Corkscrew Wine Bottle Opener

Beneno Corkscrew Wine Bottle Opener

Double-Hinged Waiters Corkscrew

Pulltap's Double-Hinged Waiters Corkscrew

Cordless Electric Wine Opener

Oster Cordless Electric Wine Opener

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The 7 Best Corkscrews of 2024, Tested and Reviewed

Because nobody likes a broken cork

good cook travel corkscrew how to use

The Spruce Eats / Lecia Landis

With all of the corkscrews on the market today, it can sometimes feel overwhelming to pick the right one for your wine needs. In your search for the perfect corkscrew, it's important to keep in mind how often you're drinking or serving wine, whether you're opening younger or older bottles, and whether you have any limited mobility. When it comes to professionals, they almost always use a waiter’s friend (commonly referred to as a wine key by industry folks), typically with a double hinge versus just one. As wine entrepreneur Regine Rousseau puts it, “the waiter’s corkscrew or bust—period.”

A waiter’s friend is the kind of corkscrew you’re likely to find in a restaurant, hotel room, airport lounge, or swag bag, and it's great for any situation, even at home. But if you’re not opening wine bottles for a living, then you'll find you have plenty of worthy styles to choose from, each with its own set of advantages. We tested every type of corkscrew out there, from electric to old-fashioned to two-prong, and we're confident that there's a corkscrew here that will fit your lifestyle, tastes, and needs.

How We Tested

  • What to Look for

Why Trust The Spruce Eats?

Best overall, pulltap's double-hinged waiters corkscrew.

  • Comfort 5 /5
  • Performance 5 /5

Classic, double-hinged design

Screw goes in smoothly

Releasing cork from screw can be difficult

"As long as it's a double-hinged waiter’s corkscrew, I'm happy,” says Carrie Wynkoop , the founder of Oregon wine club Cellar 503. While Wynkoop buys her corkscrew of choice in bulk at auction from the TSA, you can now pop open some of your own bottles at home with Pulltap's Double-Hinged Waiter Corkscrew. This Barcelona-based brand's corkscrew is our top choice, since it's an ever-sturdy and reliable option featuring a foldaway serrated blade for foil-cutting, a nickel-plated double-hinged lever, and a Teflon-coated worm (the screw part) that works perfectly on both natural and synthetic corks. It's also affordable and small—perfect since wine openers can often be misplaced and need a replacement!

Many wine pros and online reviewers swear by this durable, classic option. We appreciated that the bottle opened after just 3.5 full turns, and the fact that the cork stayed in good shape after extraction. We noted, though, that no instructions were included in the package, so prior knowledge of opening a bottle of wine with a double-hinged waiter's corkscrew would be helpful here.

Dimensions: 4.72 x 0.79 x 0.51 inches | Material: Metal | Manual or Automatic: Manual

The Spruce Eats / Lucy Simon

Best Winged

Rabbit wing corkscrew.

Sleek design

Anti-rotation clamp feature

Slip ring helps with alignment

Winged corkscrews can sometimes be a bit flimsy since their arms can go rogue whenever handled (there’s a reason they’re referred to as "cheerleaders"), but Rabbit is known to offer some seriously sturdy tools that just so happen to be even more functional and aesthetically pleasing than its standard counterparts. With supreme leverage for easy bottle-opening, the Rabbit winged corkscrew could not be more simple to operate, largely thanks to its slip ring at the base—this helps to ensure perfect alignment with the cork—and anti-rotation clamp feature, the answer to a common problem with everyday winged corkscrews. This corkscrew is made up of brass-finished stainless steel and matte black plastic parts, and it comes with a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty.

We found this winged corkscrew very easy to manage, and appreciated that the black plastic part acts as a gripper to help keep the corkscrew stable during entry. In addition, we found the action of the hinge to be smooth and reliable—not flimsy or variable at all. In a world of questionable winged corkscrews, we found this to be one of the winners.

Dimensions: 10 x 5 x 3 inches | Material: Metal | Manual or Automatic: Manual

The Spruce Eats / Siobhan Wallace

Best Electric

Secura stainless steel electric wine opener.

One-touch functionality

Includes foil cutter

Transparent corkscrew mechanism

Wobbles on charger base

Foil cutter can be knocked off easily

While electric wine openers aren’t necessarily a go-to for serious oenophiles, they do have their moments, especially for those who might otherwise struggle to remove a cork. Electric wine openers are also perfect for anyone who just isn’t comfortable with a wine key, lever system, winged corkscrew, or other manual tool. Plus, they're fast, easy, rechargeable (if not battery-powered), and often come with a display base and an accessory or two.

Such is the case with the top-rated Secura electric wine opener, a stainless-steel device that comes with a charging base and a great foil cutter, which is always great to have on hand no matter what kind of corkscrew you’re using. This model can remove up to 30 corks on one full charge (perfect for events), and the built-in LED light helps immensely with visibility—though the device is designed to guide the worm in nice and straight without extra effort on the user’s part. 

We were impressed with how quickly and cleanly the cork comes out with this tool, especially compared with a traditional corkscrew. We observed, however, that you have to make sure to press down firmly on the opener—otherwise it will just rotate but fail to make contact with the cork.

Dimensions: 12 x 2.7 x 7.5 inches | Material: Stainless steel | Manual or Automatic : Automatic

The Spruce Eats / Prairie Rose Free

The Spruce Eats / Sage McHugh

The Spruce Eats / Sage McHugh 

Best Budget

True truetap waiter's corkscrew.

Double-hinged, compact design

Nonstick screw

Attractive color

Comes with serrated foil cutter

Takes some force to open and close

Though Pulltap’s standard waiter’s friend is relatively affordable, there is a less expensive equivalent for those who love a bargain. Enter the True Truetap Waiter's Corkscrew. You’ll get all the same bells and whistles that the Pulltap offers—serrated foil cutter, compact size, double-hinged design, nonstick worm, and thoughtful design—at a significantly lower price point. This is a great option if you’re buying in bulk for an event or gifting endeavor, or simply stocking up on wine keys (the more, the merrier).

We appreciate the simplicity and straightforwardness of this classic corkscrew: while it's not a prestige piece, it works consistently, and we had no difficulty opening bottles sealed with either natural or synthetic cork. This model also comes in various colors, which adds to its value and versatility. Despite the bargain price, the Truetap offers everything you need out of a corkscrew.

Dimensions: 4.75 x 0.75 x 1 inches | Material: Plastic and metal | Manual or Automatic: Manual

OXO Vertical Corkscrew with Removable Foil Cutter

  • Performance 4 /5

Sleek, sturdy design

Easy to use

Works well with both natural and synthetic corks

Underwhelming foil cutter

Lever-style corkscrews are another smart alternative to traditional wine keys for wine drinkers who just prefer an easier means of opening a bottle of wine. This type of tool is generally made up of two long clamps that secure around the base of a bottle’s mouth, with the corkscrew attached to a single lever that drives the screw downward into the cork at the ideal angle.

Oxo’s steel vertical lever corkscrew, which comes with a nifty foil cutter, is made up of a die-cast zinc handle and nonstick worm (plus a replacement screw), meaning it works well with natural and synthetic corks alike. It’s also incredibly easy to use, requiring minimal physical effort to remove any cork. Plus, it’s easy on the eyes, thanks to its sleek, smart design.

The Oxo wasn't a difficult device to use, and worked exactly as the instructions detailed. The foil cutter was a bit flimsy, and we lamented that extracting synthetic corks wasn't as seamless as regular corks. Overall, though, we thought the Oxo lever corkscrew would make a great gift for someone who's into gadgets, or a caterer who needs to open multiple bottles of wine at a time.

Dimensions: 2.5 x 7.6 x 7.2 inches | Material: Zinc, Stainless steel | Manual or Automatic: Manual

Best Design

Rbt by rabbit vertical lever wine opener.

Gorgeous design

Great functionality

Foil cutter included

If the look of your wine opener sitting on your home bar is just as important to you as its functionality, the RBT Lever Corkscrew from Rabbit might just be the sleek, eye-catching unit you've been dreaming of. Simultaneously modern and timeless, this corkscrew equally connotes a brand new luxury car and a gilded lobby bar in a century-old hotel.

Constructed of elegantly-finished metal, and possessing a nice weight to it in the hand, the RBT Lever Corkscrew makes the experience of opening a bottle of wine as sensorially satisfying as it is straightforward. Simply place the unit over the mouth of the bottle and secure the clamps with one hand while rotating the lever with the other. When we tested the RBT, the extraction was quick and smooth, and we had no trouble getting the unit to release the cork afterward.

With its included foil cutter (finished in black and gold, of course), the RBT Lever Corkscrew is a statement piece that delivers seamless performance and looks classy while doing it.

Dimensions: 8.39 x 8.27 x 2.68 inches | Material: Metal | Manual or Automatic: Manual

The Spruce Eats / Jesse Porter

Best Splurge

Laguiole en aubrac solid horn waiters corkscrew.

Expertly crafted in France

Beautiful design and box

Well-balanced

Makes a great gift

Some occasions, such as impressing guests or gifting the wine expert in your life, call for an extremely fancy wine key—and nothing really fits the bill quite like the Laguiole en Aubrac Solid Horn Waiters Corkscrew. This is a tried-and-true brand known for its heirloom-quality products, and this particular corkscrew is the product of great craftsmanship and top-of-the-line materials (e.g. Sandvik stainless steel combined with solid Nigerian Zebu horn). If you’ve ever wanted to feel like you’re cutting through a stick of butter when opening a bottle of wine, this is the ticket. The ebony storage and gift box is a nice touch, too.

We really appreciated the aesthetics of the Laguiole en Aubrac, and the way that it felt solid and substantial in the hand, but we did note that the hinges are a bit tight. We also felt that the bulk makes it slightly hard to maneuver, especially for someone with smaller hands. That said, we agree that a pricey bottle of wine deserves special attention, and this glamorous corkscrew certainly feels special.

Dimensions: 6.4 x 3 x 1.3 inches | Material: Horn, Stainless steel | Manual or Automatic: Manual

If you’re looking for the best all-around corkscrew, we recommend Pulltap's Double-Hinged Waiter’s Corkscrew . It’s a durable, high-quality bottle opener that professionals swear by. If you prefer something more budget-friendly, consider the True Truetap Waiter’s Corkscrew . It has all the features of Pulltap's opener—foil cutter, double-hinged design, a nonstick worm—with an even friendlier price point.

We sent a total of 17 top-rated corkscrew models to our editors for testing in their own homes, looking at qualities like aesthetics, comfort, ease of use, and value. Our testers also undertook various tests to determine which corkscrews performed the best in a range of categories—these included foil cutting, extracting natural corks, and extracting synthetic corks. After getting a good feel for how the corkscrews, we analyzed them all on how well the cork was extracted and if there was any breakage for our performance rating, the comfort during extraction, and the overall value for each.

What to Look for in a Corkscrew

Everyone has their favorite kind of corkscrew. For most beverage professionals, a good old wine key or waiter’s corkscrew is the holy grail tool, but if you prefer a winged model or electric option, that’s great, too. Whatever will best help you open your favorite wine bottles is the one you should choose.

"I almost exclusively use wine keys to open my wine bottles," says Adam Goddu , retail operations manager at Stone’s Throw Pizza in Vermont. "They’re low-tech and inexpensive, and I like to keep one in my backpack just in case."

For most, a corkscrew made primarily from stainless steel is the best way to go. It’s sturdy, won’t rust, and has a nice shine to it. Many corkscrew do have a grippy silicone or rubber exterior. This can be extremely helpful during the extraction process, especially if your hands are a bit wet. But make sure to put those corkscrews away after opening the bottle since the material can easily collect dust and dander. No matter what material you chose, it's also good practice to hand-wash your corkscrew, especially after a party.

You can find a great wine key for under $20. Winged corkscrews can be found for around that, but sometimes will go up to $30 or more. Most electric models will range between $20 to $75. You can go even higher than that for an upgraded model, but don’t feel like you have to spend over $20. Budget picks will serve you well.

“There’s a misconception that the more expensive, gadgety corkscrews are easier and better, but that’s rarely the case for me," says Goddu. "Use whatever’s easiest for you, but for me, that’s my trusty wine key.” 

How do you use a corkscrew?

It depends a bit on the corkscrew, but for a simple wine key (sometimes called a waiter’s corkscrew), the process is as follows:

  • Cut the foil under the lip of the bottle using the serrated blade. If it’s a casual gathering, feel free to just pull off the foil. It’s generally only lightly stuck on with a bit of glue.
  • Center the squiqqly metal part (sometimes called the “worm”) atop the cork, and then screw it in until it’s about 3/4 of the way inside the cork.
  • Fold the opener down and place the lower of the double-jointed metal arms on the edge of the bottle. Use that leverage to get the cork about halfway out of the bottle.
  • Take the bottom joint off the bottle by folding the handle back. Then, rock the metal arm back toward the bottle and place the shorter of the two joints on the bottle. This will give the leverage you need to remove the cork the rest of the way from the bottle.

What should you do if the cork breaks off on the corkscrew?

Though this can feel stressful, the solution is actually quite simple. Just screw off the bit that’s stuck on the corkscrew and go back in and use the corkscrew the same way on the part still stuck in the bottle. 

Between writing about wine for the past seven years and being half French, Céline Bossart has opened more bottles than she can count. Her preferred corkscrew is a classic waiter’s friend, and she may or may not have taken Wynkoop’s lead in buying a mixed bulk bag from the TSA.

This piece was updated by Jesse Porter , a longtime sommelier and LA-based wine writer. His beverage writing has appeared in Mutineer Magazine, and he authored the Young Winos of LA blog from 2008 to 2012.

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Purchase options and add-ons, about this item.

  • Manufactured in china
  • Easy to use
  • Highly durable
  • ABS body with a rolled steel screw
  • Collar fits snugly over all size wine bottles

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Goodcook Cork Screw Bar Tools, 11 x 4 x 2.5 inches, Black

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good cook travel corkscrew how to use

Product Description

Touch, black with red accents, cork screw wing, ABS body with a rolled steel screw, soft grip tpr wings, tpr collar fits over all size wine bottles. This product is highly durable. This product is easy to use. This product is manufactured in china.

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" Works well . Less stress on fingers." Read more

" This product is acceptable , I own one, easy to operate. The problem I have is the seller states FREE RETURNS...." Read more

"...Due to my disability, it's too heavy for me to use and therefore useless . Not happy" Read more

"No more struggling to open a bottle. It worked so easily I was sure it wasn't gripping the cork -- it was. No muscle needed...." Read more

Customers like the sturdiness of the bottle opener. They mention that it's very sturdy and the tip as a foil remover will stay sharp for many years.

"...Use the edge tip as a foil remover, will stay sharp for many years ...." Read more

"...How long will it last since it's plastic, who knows. But it seems fairly sturdy and very easy to use...." Read more

" Sturdy ! Works great!" Read more

" Very sturdy " Read more

Customers find the bottle opener easy to use. Some mention it's sturdy and easy to open wine bottles.

"... Simple to use " Read more

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"...But it seems fairly sturdy and very easy to use .Oh yes it did work easily - but it only lasted exactly 12 months and broke!" Read more

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  1. HOW TO USE A CORKSCREW

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  3. Corkscrew PNE 2007

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COMMENTS

  1. Waiter's Corkscrew

    Our Waiter's Corkscrew with bonus bottle opener and two-stage lever has a corkscrew worm that neatly snaps into place. Use both stages of the lever to ease o...

  2. An All-Inclusive Guide On How To Use 12 Different Corkscrews

    Steps: Put the bottle on a table or flat surface and remove the foil. Carefully extend the double-hinged part and extend the worm so that it forms a T-shape with the handle. Holding the bottle with your non-dominant hand, use your dominant hand to center the tip of the worm in the middle of the cork.

  3. 3 Ways to Use a Corkscrew

    2. Twist the worm into the cork. Poke the sharp tip of the worm slightly outside the center of the cork. Gently twist it clockwise until only one spiral of the worm shows. Usually, this will take about six and a half turns. [2] Use the blade or the tip of the worm to cut away foil from the cork first, if necessary. 3.

  4. How to Use The Basic Travel Corkscrew

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  5. GoodCook Collapsible Stainless Steel Travel Size Corkscrew, Brown

    The Good Cook Travel Corkscrew has a brown wooden handle, and the cork worm is constructed of stainless long-lasting durability steel. This corkscrew is capable of easily and efficiently removing both natural and synthetic corks. This corkscrew has an innovative and easy to use design. I was able to firmly grip and hold this corkscrew comfortably.

  6. How to Use a Waiter's Corkscrew

    Befuddled by waiter's corkscrews? Don't be! Learn how to open a bottle of wine with a waiter's corkscrew including tips and tricks from WineExpress.com's Win...

  7. How to Use a Wine Opener: Detailed Guides for 6 Corkscrews

    To use a winged corkscrew to open wine: After cutting the foil (new versions will have one right at the bottom) place the round opening where the bottom of the worm is over the cork. The levers will be in the down position. Turn the handle until the levers come all the way up. Press down and they will remove the cork.

  8. How to Use a Waiter's Style Corkscrew

    Bend the hinge so that the curved notch sits on the lip of the bottle. Hold the notch against the bottle lip for leverage with one hand; with the other, pull the corkscrew upwards. If using a two-step waiter's key, switch to the second notch and finish pulling the cork out of the bottle. Twist the cork off the worm by hand.

  9. GoodCook Touch Waiters Corkscrew, Stainless Steel Fold-Out features

    The double-hinged, two step lever gives better leverage for pulling the cork out, so it's always easy. For even more versatility, this also has a bottle opener, so this will get plenty of use in the kitchen and behind the bar. Product Features. Small integrated knife cuts the foil on wine bottles; Stainless steel worm is heavy duty and durable

  10. Wine 101 Video: How to Use a Waiter's Corkscrew

    Watch our under-2-minute video and follow the steps. How to Use a Waiter's Corkscrew: Press the foil cutter against the neck of the bottle and twist around the neck to remove the foil. Place the point of the worm into the center of the cork and start to drill down until you reach a good place where the hing hits the top of the bottle.

  11. Exploring Corkscrews: A Guide to Types and Usage

    Gently and steadily twist the corkscrew's tip into the cork until you reach the screw's last coil. 13. Lever Placement: Secure and Balanced. If you're using a waiter's corkscrew, open the ...

  12. How to Open a Wine Bottle 3 Different Ways

    Tuck away the knife. Once the foil is removed, release the corkscrew, a.k.a. the worm, and place its tip in the center of the cork. (The closer to the center of the cork, the better your chances ...

  13. Good Cook Corkscrew, Wing (12531)

    Good Cook Corkscrew, Wing (12531) Visit the GoodCook Store. 4.3 4.3 out of 5 stars 19 ratings. $9.12 with 6 percent savings -6% $ 9. 12. Typical price: $9.73 Typical price: $9.73 $9.73. This is determined using the 90-day median price paid by customers for the product on Amazon. We exclude prices paid by customers for the product during a ...

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    GoodCook Touch Waiters Corkscrew, Stainless Steel Fold-Out features with Comfort Grip Body $ 9. 99 GoodCook Touch Winged Cork Screw, Stainless Steel Worm and Comfort Grip Handle $ 7 . 99 2 Qt Batter Bowl $ 7 . 99

  15. The 7 Best Corkscrews of 2024, Tested and Reviewed

    Best Overall: Pulltap's Double-Hinged Waiters Corkscrew at Amazon ($7) Jump to Review. Best Winged: Rabbit Wing Corkscrew at Amazon ($13) Jump to Review. Best Electric: Secura Stainless Steel Electric Wine Opener at Amazon ($24) Jump to Review.

  16. Amazon.com: Good Cook Waiter's Corkscrew: Wine: Home & Kitchen

    Good cook brand ; Knife included to cut wine seals Report an issue with this product or seller. ... Page 1 of 1 Page 1 of 1. Previous page. goodcook wine opener. travel corkscrew. good cook wine opener. wing corkscrew wine opener. Next page. Product Description . Corkscrew, waiter's lever action lifts cork out in one piece. Knife included to ...

  17. Amazon.com: Good Cook Corkscrew: Home & Kitchen

    Corkscrew, travel unique, innovative design is easy to use ; Worm stores inside handle for safety and convenience ; Fits in your pocket to bring anywhere ; Number of pieces: 1.0 ; Buy it with. This item: Good Cook Corkscrew . $5.99 $ 5. 99. Get it as soon as Monday, Oct 16. Only 2 left in stock - order soon. Sold by Lakeside Distributors and ...

  18. Winged Corkscrew

    The comfort grip handle and the precision machined screw make it easy to turn the screw, sending it into the cork. Then, the wings just need to be pushed down to pull the cork out of the bottle. Whether you like white, red or rose wines, this corkscrew can get the job done quickly and easily, then it stores compactly in the gadget drawer.

  19. Goodcook Cork Screw Bar Tools, 11 x 4 x 2.5 inches, Black

    DEHOZO Premium Wing Corkscrew Wine Opener - Zinc Alloy Body, Non-Slip Levers, Self-Centering Spiral Corkscrew - Perfect for Bars and Home Use - Ideal Gift for Wine Enthusiasts 16. $12.59 $ 12. 59. 0:51 . ... Good Cook : ASIN : B003XPH6YM : Item model number : 20318 : Customer Reviews ... Good Assistant. PerfectKitchen. Good Assistant. Dehozo's ...

  20. Good Cook Travel Corkscrew

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  21. How To: Use a Two-Step Corkscrew

    A Blue Apron chef demonstrates how to use a two-step corkscrew. Learn how to easily open your favorite bottle of wine like a pro. Sign Up for Blue Apron Here...

  22. Video: How to Use a Corkscrew

    To use a corkscrew, hold the handle and screw the spiral metal "worm" clockwise into the cork. Then, slowly pull upward until the cork is all the way out. If you're using a winged corkscrew, position its center ring over the cork with the 2 long levers, or "wings," down against the center ring.

  23. Perfect Corkscrew Pasta Recipe

    Step 2: Make the Cream Sauce. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add flour, salt, and pepper. Whisk and cook for 2 minutes. Gradually pour in the milk and heavy cream, stirring constantly. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook for a few minutes until the mixture is barely thickened.