Posts Tagged ‘wine’

Waiter’s Friend – How to use one without looking like a wally!

October 28, 2008

What is a waiter’s friend?

A waiter’s friend is merely a corkscrew, an intrument used for removing stopping corks from wine bottles. Generally, a waiter’s friend consists of a pointed metallic helix, referred to as the “worm”, which is attached to a handle. The user grips the handle and screws the metal point through the centre of the cork, entwining the cork and corkscrew so that moving one moves the other. A waiter’s friend can also be referred to as a sommelier knife as it is shaped in a folding body similar to a pocket knife. An arm extends to brace against the lip of the bottle for leverage when removing the cork, this is known as the fulcrum. Some waiter’s friends have two steps on the lever, and often also a bottle opener. A small hinged knife blade is housed in the handle end for removing the foil surrpounding the neck of many wine bottles.

How do I use it?

(If the wine bottle lacks a hood or foil covering its neck and cork, move on to the next paragraph.)

Firstly, remove the foil with the retractable knife. The safest way to do this is to open the blade and lay the handle on the palm-up hand across the base of the fingers, with the blade tip pointing in the same direction as and the blade edge pointing towards the outstretched thumb. Grip the handle firmly with the fingers, then turn the palm down and place the neck of the bottle between the thumb and the knife edge. The knife should be under the bottle’s drip ridge. Squeeze the bottle neck with enough pressure to cut the foil and use the other hand to rotate the bottle one full turn. Use the point of the blade to separate and discard the cap from the remainder of the foil, which stays on the bottle. Finally, remember to close the blade! Plastic hoods usually require more pressure than tin or aluminum hoods and some wine bottles will have a pull-strip to assist in the hood’s removal, although these don’t always work.

To remove the cork, open the “worm”. Although old wisdom says not to penetrate through the opposite end of the cork in order to avoid getting cork pieces in the wine, nevermind. Size does matter; so does sharpness. A long, sharp wire helix worm will neatly pierce even a dry cork without breaking off pieces and is guaranteed to grip and remove the cork whole.

Put the point of the worm in the centre of the cork. Do not worry too much about aligning the worm parallel to the bottle‘s neck. It is more important to get the worm centered on the cork. As the worm is turned into the cork in a clockwise direction, it will begin to right itself as it goes deeper. You need to stop when there is only one turn of the worm. Bend the handle-lever down to allow opening the fulcrum. Place the fulcrum’s notch on the edge of the bottle and, on the hand gripping the bottle, use the index finger to hold the fulcrum to the bottle, you can use the other hand to lift the handle-lever and raise the cork about one-half inch. Turn the screw that last turn and finish lifting and removing the cork.

That’s all there is to it… the next part’s much easier, pour and enjoy!

Waiter’s friends come in all different forms, you can purchase and find cheap waiter’s friend for a couple of pounds, but it is also possible to obtain more expensive looking, state of the art waiter’s friends, which are fantastic for gift giving. To make waiter’s friends even more special you can get them engraved with a personalised message or a personalised name, this is possible from our site; engraved gifts.


Do you know what you’re drinking? – Alcohol and Units

August 7, 2008

I think many of us have no idea what we are drinking, because the system the UK uses for measuring alcohol in beverages is slightly complicated, so I’ve put together a helpful and easy to use guide so you can drink safely & responsibly!

The alcohol content of drinks is measured in units, with one UK unit containing eight grams of pure alcohol. Now, you can’t just count each drink as one unit of alcohol unfortunately, as the number of units depends on the different strength and size of each drink, so it can vary a lot.

Know Your Units – How do I calculate what I’m drinking?

There’s a whole load of alcoholic beverages on offer; wine, fortified liquers, beer, lager, spirits, ready to drink bottles, stout etc and each drink has a different alcohol content, you can see from the examples below just how the unit content of alcholic drinks actually differ…

Small Glass of Wine – 175ml – 12% abv = 2.1 Units

Spirits – 35ml – 40% = 1.4 units

Pint of Standard Beer or Cider – 568ml – 4.1%abv = 2.3 Units

Bottle of Beer or RTD – 275ml – 5% abv = 1.4 Units

To figure out how many units your alcoholic beverage is worth, there’s a simple formula:

Unit = [Volume (ml) x abv]/1000

Small Glass of Wine – 175ml – 12% abv = 2.1 Units

175ml x 12/1000 = 2.1 Units

Can you guess how many units each of the drinks below contains?  Scroll down for the answers.

What do you think the units for each glass are?

What do you think the units for each glass are?


They all contain one unit of alcohol. It's surprising, don't you think?



So, what’s healthy?

The UK Government advises that men should not regularly drink more than 3 to 4 units per day and women should not take in more than 2 to 3 units each day. Continuously drinking four or more units for men, and three or more for women can lead to progressive health issues, so it is best to stick to the recommended levels!

Drinking and Driving…

The legal drink-drive limit is 80mg per 100 millilitres of blood, but this cannot easily be translated into alcohol units as this measurement can be affected by age, weight, sex and whether food has been eaten, plus a host of other factors. It is therefore (to be safe) best not to drink and drive!

A little interesting fact: Your body breaks down alcohol at a rate of about one unit per hour – and nope, there’s no way you can speed this up!

Purchase Personalised Gifts On The Move With The Apple iPhone

March 20, 2008

Personalised Gifts On The Move With The Apple iPhone

In today’s society, there’s not a lot you can’t do is there? Every day there appears to be some new gadget or gizmo available to buy, which can do things you would never have imagined possible.

Most recently, I have been amazed by the Apple iPhone, which I received as a 21st birthday gift a couple of weeks ago purchased from FoneLink (07855 555786). I asked for it as a present, because I was fed up with my nokia, which I’d obtained second hand over four years ago, which only allowed me to send SMS and make phone calls, and because I have everything I need, but mainly because I was intrigued by the way 02 and Apple’s multi-million pound advertising campaign made this new piece of technology look.

In all honesty, I didn’t really understand what the iPhone was all about even after seeing the advertisements on Sky, in the newspapers and in shop windows. I understood from Apple’s UK website, that the iPhone released in the UK in November 2007, ‘combines three devices into one – a mobile phone, a widescreen iPod and the best mobile Internet device ever’, but I still wasn’t sure exactly what it did or how it worked. I just thought it looked good and therefore I new I wanted one!

Since receiving this revolutionary phone on 5th March 2008, it is practically attached to me. I am still, after 2 weeks fascinated by the capacity of the 115 x 61 x 11.6 mm phone weighing just 135 grams.

Not only am I able to send SMS and keep track of all the messages that I receive and send, but I can play pool, take photos on the 2.0 Megapixel camera as well as use the metronome from the installer application to help with me with my piano playing. What I find even more interesting is that I can surf the net using the WiFi and Edge facility practically anywhere I go, which means I can access emails and browse videos on YouTube. It also means you can purchase gifts from whilst on the go!

One of the first things I did was to see if the website worked on the phone. Now, I believe that although the website is easy to navigate, it is very interactive and I thought this may prove a problem, but it actually didn’t. I managed to order a couple of bottles of personalised labelled wine without any effort at all!

So, if you’re looking for an original gift this father’s day, an upcoming birthday or a wedding anniversary present for someone who has everything they need, I would suggest buying the Apple iPhone from FoneLink (£100 + £35 mobile tariff for 18 months) first and then placing your personalised gift orders on whilst you’re on the move!

Californian Zinfandel Rose Wine Review

March 12, 2008

With summer just around the corner there are many functions take place, such as weddings, barbeques, summer balls and parties.

One of the products we sell at is a White Zinfandel, a rose coloured wine from California.

Here is a few quick notes about the White Zinfandel wine:

Historically an inexpensive jug wine, White Zinfandel is a quaffing wine that is sweet, soft, and low in alcohol, making it a popular choice with those who would not otherwise drink wine. The sugar content can make White Zinfandel taste almost like a fruit punch, although some examples have crisp acids and are balanced in their own way. White Zinfandel is typically manufactured for immediate consumption rather than for aging.

This blush wine was introduced in California in the early 1970s. It became the most popular varietal table wine during the 1980s. Consumers liked that it was sweeter than most wines (and it was a pretty color). Many people were introduced to the rose wine category through White Zinfandel.

Have you ever wondered how rose wine is made? Well…, when the red grape is crushed for its white juice, the skin of the red grapes is left in contact with the juice for a short amount of time, which makes the liquid turn pink!

Our californian white zinfandel is light and easy to drink with subtle tastes and aromas of luscious strawberries, raspberries and other ”summer” fruits. The wine is best served chilled.

Last year, we noticed that the White Zinfandel sold very well as a personalised gift for weddings and birthdays!

In a couple of weeks we will be writing an article on how bubbles are made in champagne. If you know how the bubbles are achieved and would like to contribute to this blog then please feel free to comment.


Here are a couple of other sites that give some interesting information about wine:


Translations of the word Wine 

All our old posts…

March 12, 2008

So we haven’t posted for a very long time! But that’s for the simple reason that everyone has been sooooo busy creating the brand new look WineGifts4U, sourcing new products and generally creating the best website as we possibly can! So we would like to apologise for taking so long to start posting again. But fear not we will keep you updated with all the latest news and happenings here at WineGifts4U.

Let me get you up to speed then…

Since WineGifts4U last posted there have been a number of exciting things that have happened:

1) We have won a few awards!

Lincolnshire Freepress: Business of Year Runner Up
Lincolnshire Freepress: Best Use of Technology WINNER

2) We have also revamped the website so that it is now a more user friendly and exciting enviroment. Your comments and suggestions about the website are more then welcome.

3) A range of new products have also been added to the site including:

personalised vodka and whiskey
engraved gifts
gift packs e.g. grow your own cactus, become a laird or lady

So its all go! But we still have some great things coming up.. the launch of a new range of products which include:

personalised T-shirts
personalised bag/mousemats/coasters/clocks and much more….so keep an eye out on the website for what’s still to come.

So that the sales pitch done! Here’s are some other interesting facts….

Do you all remember the earthquake a few weeks back? Well we certainly do… thankfully none of our wine was knocked off the shelves and there were no major damages… but a member of the WineGifts4U team ventured out to the realms of the epicentre of the earthquake in Market Rasen the day after the quake! Not even aware that what they had felt the night before had been an earthquake. Oddly enough they were attending a meeting centred around blogging!

Thats all for now folks!