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Gift Ideas For Wine Lovers

Cooler packs, preservers and aerators


What do you buy the wine lover on your holiday list other than another bottle of wine? Here are three gift ideas that are sure to please:

Wine Bottle Cooler Pack, Less than $10

The wine bottle cooler pack is an ingenious, gel-filled plastic blanket that both chills and keeps your white wine at the perfect temperature. The Velcro closure lets it adjust to fit everything from a riesling bottle to a magnum. Give two so your wine lover can always have one in the freezer ready to use. He or she will really appreciate this indispensable accessory when the weather heats up, but it comes in handy all year long.

Private Preserve, $12.99

Forget all the other devices, this is the No. 1-rated wine preserver, and with good reason. It injects a layer of tasteless, environmentally safe, medical-grade gas (a mix of argon, carbon dioxide and nitrogen) over the surface of the wine in the bottle. It's the same principal behind the commercial Cruvinet systems you've seen at wine bars, but in a can designed for home use. One can preserves 120 bottles of opened wine.

Vinturi Essential Wine Aerator, $39.99

This is the one for the wine lover who has everything. It's no secret that most red wine benefits from being decanted--letting the wine breathe a bit helps it to open up and reveal more flavor. Young wine, especially, is often filled with carbon dioxide, which acts as a reductive agent preserving the flavors but also mutes them early on. Decanting was the traditional method to counteract this (although it's just one of the reasons to decant). Now there's the Vinturi, a high-tech alternative. Just hold the aerator over a glass and pour wine through it for immediate aeration. The Vinturi mixes in just the right amount of air and generates a cool slurping noise as you pour the wine through.