Today we review the Vacu Vin Wine Saver Pump.
This nifty little gadget consists in a vacuum pump and two rubber stoppers for wine bottles.
When you leave a bottle of wine unfinished, wine will quickly turn sour and like vinegar. This is because in contact with air, wine will oxidize and turn acidic.
When you cork a bottle, you prevent fresh air from touching the wine, which limits oxidation. However, there is still some air in the bottle, so your wine does get a little sour anyway. Less than if you kept the bottle open, but still a little.
So the idea behind the Vacu Vin Wine Saver Pump is to create a vacuum in the bottle. That is, removing as much remaining air as possible, so as to limit oxidation.
It turns out that this is a pretty solid idea! While it won’t keep your wine pristine for weeks on, it will at least extend your pleasure for a few more days.
So what does the vendor claims?
- Creates an airtight vacuum that preserves wine once the bottle has been opened
- Prevents the oxidation process that is responsible for the deterioration of wine
- Incorporates a patented ‘click’ mechanism that indicates when the airtight vacuum has been established
- Highly durable – will tolerate regular and prolonged usage
- Suitable for all but sparkling wines
- Award-winning product (used in over 35 million households and more than 80 countries throughout the world)
- Contains: 1 x Wine Saver Pump and 2 x Vacuum Bottle Stoppers (both re-usable)
- Also available in white and stainless steel
How does it compare to standard corks?
Standard corks are, well, just corks, or stoppers. They prevent fresh air to go in the bottle, and wine to go out. They don’t remove air already in the bottle, and so won’t completely prevent oxidation.
Standard corks aren’t always air-tight, and their performance can vary according to the environment. Too dry, and they might shrink and let air pass. Too wet, and they might get moldy or give a cork taste to the wine.
However, they are very common, you usually have one just with your bottle (don’t get me started on caps…), and can be adjusted in seconds, no pumping needed.
Also, some (special) corks can be used for sparkling wines (usually with a metallic attachment that clips on the bottle neck). The Vacu Vin Wine Saver cannot be used for sparkling wines! Removing air from the bottle will just extract bubbles from the liquid and make it flat in no time…
How does it compare to other vacuum pumps?
First of all, Vacu Vin is the original inventor of the system in 1986. The Wine Saver benefits from decades of experience,and it shows.
It’s strongly built to last, the stoppers are usually quite airtight, and allow for horizontal storage, which isn’t always possible with other brands.
And last but not least, Vacu Vin is truly socially responsible and, with its “Sharing Success Foundation”, participates in giving jobs to mentally and physically disadvantaged people. While this has no direct incidence on the product, it’s always good to know that your purchase helps someone in need.
Summary of Pros
- effective at avoiding oxidation
- tip: wet the rubber cork before use
- helpful click to indicate vacuum is done
- pump up to 20 times before hearing click
- solid build, the pump lasts for a long time
- socially responsible
Summary of Cons
- instructions can be confusing
- if the vacuum is not well done, might leak in horizontal position
- Vacuum lasts for around 36 hours, not weeks
- might need to replace stoppers regularly as they wear off
Who will most enjoy this product?
The Vacu Vin Wine Saver is ideal for people who will finish a bottle within a few days. This is great if you’re an occasional drinker, or if you’re a regular who downs one or two glasses a day.
If you intend to keep your open bottles for a longer time, or if you mostly drink sparkling wines, this might not be the best product for you.