There are myriad wine accessories on the market and while I’m definitely not averse to some of them, the sober truth is that many gizmos are not necessities. There are two items that I consider absolute essentials for drinking wine, and you need not invest more than $15 total on them (and one of them can involve Tupperware!).
The Corkscrew: Be it rabbit style, wing, arm, self-pulling, or two-prong, there is a galaxy of cork extractors out there. But nothing beats the simple Waiter’s Friend corkscrew for sheer ease of use, affordability, and portability. Look for ones with a Teflon-coated spiral for easy drilling, and a little serrated blade to cut the foil off the bottleneck. Or you could just go for wine with a screwcap.
The Pitcher: The only other mandatory tool is a decanting vessel, which is a fancy way to say you need a pouring container in the event you want to soften your wine’s tannins or remove its sediment. (More on this in my book!) But before you drop hundreds on one of the many fragile, curvaceous glass decanters available, know that a simple glass pitcher in your kitchen will suffice. In fact, I know a whole slew of happy connoisseurs who decant their priceless bottles with Tupperware. Tongue firmly in cheek, they affectionately refer to their trusty vessel as the Club Crystal.
For other ways you can save money while drinking richly, check out my book, How to Drink Like a Billionaire (Regan Arts).