This site has limited support for your browser. We recommend switching to Edge, Chrome, Safari, or Firefox.

Cart 0

No more products available for purchase

Subtotal Free
Shipping, taxes, and discount codes are calculated at checkout

Your Cart is Empty

Top Reasons WSET Advocates Coravin for "Wine by the Glass" Exploration

WSET Wine Header

We’ve all been there... A waiter presents a wine list the size of a novel, and you find yourself overwhelmed by the options. Do you go with the familiar Pinot Noir or branch out and try something new? Will the wine go with both your starter and your main? What about dessert? It’s difficult pairing a sweet dish with anything but an equally sweet wine. Committing to a full bottle means sticking with one choice for the whole meal. However, drinking wine by the glass allows you to sample different varieties, styles, and regions over the course of dinner.

In the past the only places where you would be able to do this, with quality wines, would be high end restaurants who had enough sales volume to justify opening more than a couple of different bottles to serve by the glass. But even here, your options would be limited. Once opened, a bottle of wine is exposed to oxygen and must be consumed within a few days (find out how long wine lasts once opened). So, for a restaurant, serving wine by the glass can be a risky proposition. Sell just one glass and they are throwing significant money and wine down the drain. However, the Coravin has changed this picture.

Coravin: Enhancing your wine-by-the-glass experience

Coravin Timeless allows the wine in the bottle to be reached without the cork being removed or the wine in the bottle being exposed to the elements. This is done by a thin hollow needle being pierced through the cork and argon gas being pumped into the bottle. As the gas enters the bottle, wine is drawn into and up the needle and can be poured into your glass. Argon is a non-reactive gas meaning it does not affect the taste of the wine. Almost like magic, the cork naturally reseals after the needle is removed, keeping the remaining wine fresh for weeks, months, and even years. You can even put it back on a shelf without fear of spillages.

Drinking wine by the glass means that you can enjoy several different wines at one sitting, or savor just a single glass without committing to an entire bottle. I received my Coravin as a gift from my wife when she was pregnant. Being able to have a glass of something delicious without the pressure to finish a bottle was very liberating.

Coravin has played an important role in enabling restaurants and bars to increase the selection of wines opened at any given time. Without needing to commit to finishing full bottles, they can provide tremendous diversity by the glass. Wine drinkers can travel round the world on any given evening and experience a huge range of grape varieties, regions, and styles rather than being limited to just one bottle. High-end bottles worth hundreds or even thousands of pounds can now be poured by the glass allowing those celebrating to have a single serving of a very special wine.

Coravin and WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust)

The flexibility and freedom provided by Coravin also provides a relaxed way to grow your wine knowledge. For students studying for the WSET Level 3 Award in Wines or the WSET Level 4 Diploma in Wines, Coravin presents an incredible opportunity to sample many different wines. The ability to taste a wine without committing to a whole bottle opens the opportunity to do whole flights of a single variety, really getting to know the intricacies and individualities of each wine. Students can taste benchmark examples from famous regions to better understand stylistic differences and they can become intimately familiar with the nuances of a grape variety as expressed by different terroirs and winemaking practices.

The WSET Level 2 and Level 3 Awards in Wines also include sections on wine preservation systems, as they are vital to anyone who drinks, appreciates, or studies wine. Different types of preservation methods are covered, including vacuum and inert gas systems, of which Coravin is one of the top examples.

There are a whole range of accessories available for the Coravin Timeless device, including needles that are thinner to use with older corks as well as thicker needles for faster pouring at restaurants and bars. Additionally, Coravin produce replacement screwcaps for bottles that don’t have corks. These have a self-sealing silicon top that you can puncture with the needle, just like you would for a cork. Coravin states that these can keep wine fresh for up to three months. I haven’t tested that claim, but I have opened bottles after a month under the system and they have always been good. The limitation of the screwcap is that you need to remove the original cap and so some oxygen exposure is inevitable.
The other two models that Coravin produces work slightly differently.

The Coravin Pivot is a less expensive device which, unlike the other models, requires you to remove the cork (or screwcap) and replace it with a silicon valve that the Pivot connects to. This will keep wine fresh for up to four weeks.
The Coravin Sparkling® is the newest offering and allows you to preserve an open bottle sparkling wine for up to four weeks by repressurising the bottle with carbon dioxide gas.

Is the Coravin only for restaurants?

I recently celebrated my 40th birthday and I was gifted a fabulous bottle of vintage port, Warres 1983. I love vintage port! The heady notes of ripe black fruit changing to more tertiary aromas of dried fruit, figs, and chocolate over time. The problem is, once you have opened an older bottle of vintage port you need to drink it in a day or two. As the only port drinker in my household, this presents a challenge.

The port was delicious, raisins, chocolate, and dates, with the tiniest hint of mint on the finish. I tried it again two months later, and it hadn’t lost any of its verve. Whether you, like me, are a frustrated lover of dessert wines or just sometimes have the desire to drink a single glass of fantastic Nebbiolo, Coravin will be your new best friend.

Malcolm Venter is an educator trainer and course developer at WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust). He presents the wine, spirits, and sake ETP and is heavily involved in the development of WSETs forthcoming Beer qualifications. Malcolm holds WSET Level 3 Awards in Spirits, Wine, and Sake and is a WSET Certified Educator.

WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust) is the largest global provider of wine, spirits and sake qualifications. Founded in 1969, they have awarded nearly one million people with a qualification since their inception. WSET courses are open to both industry professionals and enthusiasts who can take them in more than 15 languages and in over 70 countries. As an independent, not-for-profit organisation, WSET qualifications offer impartial and sound learning on which individuals and businesses can build knowledge and expertise. For more information, please visit