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5 Ways to Open a Wine Bottle Without a Corkscrew

We’ve got 5 ways to open a wine bottle without a corkscrew because, let’s face it, we’ve all been there. You have a fine bottle of wine and no way to open it. Perhaps you just shrugged your shoulders, put the wine back on the shelf, and went about your day. 

Now that’s a tall tale if we’ve ever heard one. That bottle of wine will get opened, corkscrew or not. The next time you have this dilemma, you’ll know exactly how to proceed. And it won’t involve putting the wine back on the shelf.

What’s the Easiest Way to Open a Bottle of Wine Without a Corkscrew? 

The easiest way to open a bottle of wine is to use a proper corkscrew. However, the problem arises when you don’t have one. 

So, what’s the easiest way to open a bottle of wine without a corkscrew? Honestly, whatever works for you at that moment depends on what you have available.

But if you require a solid answer, we would say the easiest way is to push the cork into the bottle. Read on for further instructions on that method and others.

How Do You Open a Bottle of Wine With Heat? 

One way of opening a bottle of wine without a corkscrew is with heat. As the temperature in a bottle of wine increases, the liquid expands, increasing the pressure inside the bottle. This, in turn, pushes the cork up and out of the bottle, opening the bottle of wine with heat.

You may catch a whiff of the aroma before opening the bottle for this reason. Using heat to open a bottle of wine might be your only option if left without a corkscrew.

However, you don’t want to expose your wine to heat for long periods intentionally. This will cause it to lose both aroma and flavor.

So before you head straight to a heat source to open that bottle, check out other options for opening a wine bottle without a corkscrew. 

Pro Tip: Ditch the need for a corkscrew and instead enjoy drinking from one of these 5 Best Box Wines for Camping.

Woman opening a bottle of wine without a corkscrew on a picnic
You can open a bottle of wine without a corkscrew with a few creative techniques.

5 Ways to Open a Wine Bottle Without a Corkscrew

A corkscrew is simply a tool made to open a bottle of wine that uses a cork to seal the bottle. The keyword here is “tool.” You can use another if you don’t have the specific tool needed for a job. It may not work as gracefully as intended, but other methods will work if done right. 

We’ve got 5 ways to open a wine bottle without a corkscrew. In all instances, peel the foil off the entire top and neck of the body, ensuring easy access to the cork. 

1. Use a Key

Open a junk drawer and find a sharp key. Give it a good cleaning as you’ll use it to open something you want to consume.

Place the tip of the key in the center of the cork at a 45-degree angle. Then use the key the same way you would a corkscrew — with pressure, movement, and leverage.

Turn your wrist and apply pressure to the cork when doing so. Once you’ve gotten the key firmly into the cork, start pulling it out. Keep rotating the key into it as you pull it up and out. 

2. The Screw and Hammer Method

The screw and hammer method is all about your typical tools. As the method implies, you’ll need a screw, a screwdriver, and a hammer. Place the screw — the longer, the better — on top of the cork and screw it into the top using the screwdriver.

Stop when an inch is left showing. 

Now, place the backside of the hammer under the screw and begin pulling the cork out of the bottle. Be patient. This may take some time and some effort. But we’ve got faith in your skills. 

3. Heat Up the Neck of the Bottle

For this science-like method, you’ll need a blowtorch or a lighter. A blowtorch sounds more exciting, but either should do the job.

This works best when the bottle of wine is not chilled, so if you’ve just taken it out of the refrigerator, give it a moment to warm up to room temperature. Placing heat directly on the cold bottle could cause it to explode. 

Once the bottle has reached room temperature, place the heat source just under the cork on the neck. The heat should make it move slowly up and out of the bottle. 

Man opening a bottle of wine without a corkscrew
From using a key to a shoe, there are many ways to open a bottle of wine without a corkscrew.

4. With a Shoe

Another way to open a wine bottle without a corkscrew is to try the shoe method. First, grab a towel, preferably an older one, since you may spill some wine. Then wrap the bottom of the bottle with it.

Place the towel-wrapped wine bottle upside down in between your legs. Second, grab a shoe, preferably one with a soft sole. Then proceed to slap the bottom of the wine bottle with the shoe. 

This method may take a while, so have some patience. Also, be wary of how far the cork has come out of the bottle. If it comes out entirely, you may lose all the wine, too. 

5. Push the Cork Into the Bottle

One of the easiest ways to open a bottle of wine without a corkscrew is to do the opposite of what you would expect. Push the cork into the bottle. Grab anything with a rounded blunt end and thicker than a pencil but not more than the cork itself.

Place the bottle of wine on a flat surface, preferably one that you won’t mind spilling wine on. You will spill some wine with this method; you can’t avoid it, so be prepared. 

When ready, grab your tool of choice and, using both hands, slowly push the cork directly into the bottle. Again, don’t wear your favorite white shirt when using this method. It will splash as it drops in. Finally, you can pour your wine through a coffee filter to avoid getting cork in your glass.

Pro Tip: Are you a wine lover? Use our guide on How to Spend a Day in Napa Valley, California.

Open Your Next Bottle of Wine Without a Corkscrew

Maybe you have a glass of your favorite wine in hand. If so, at least one of these 5 methods will prove successful with your endeavor of opening a bottle of wine without a corkscrew.

And for future needs, we also hope that you have several corkscrews stored strategically. But if you don’t, please remember us. We are here to help you open that wine bottle, corkscrew or not. Cheers!

Have you ever had to open a bottle of wine without a bottle opener? Tell us what technique you used in the comments!

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