You’ve been racking your brain for the perfect Valentine gift for your wine lover and are all out of ideas? We found two fabulous gifts for the man or woman who has everything.
The Durand for vintage cork removal
If you tend to collect and age wine, you’ll find that sometimes a traditional corkscrew just won’t do the trick. Even with newer bottles, those with composite corks sometimes break while you’re trying to remove them. You could use a fondue fork and push the broken cork all the way in, but then you have the problem of the cork falling back into the neck at every pour. There is a solution. We found a new, patented, corkscrew designed to remove old or compromised corks. And it really works! It’s called The Durand.
Designed by wine collector Mark Kahn Taylor, and named for world-renowned sommelier Yves Durand, it has been repeatedly tested on the most challenging corks, according to its designers. We tested it on both new and vintage corks, and it worked every time.
Now it’s not inexpensive. But neither are some of those “fancy” decorative bottle-sized corkscrews that might make a better bookend. And seriously, if someone spends thousands on a vintage Margaux, he will really appreciate a corkscrew that leaves the cork intact. The Durand is both attractive and sturdy, and comes in an attractive cork “box.” The blades are stainless steel and the handle is zinc casting with a nickel chrome finish. The worm is steel with a Teflon® coating. Priced at $125 USD. Watch the video, here, and you can see how easy it is to use.
Gourmet Chocolates from zChocolat.com
Hearts. Chocolate. I love them both. And while you could run by your local Walgreen’s or CVS and pick up a box of Russell Stovers for just anyone, when it comes to the discriminating wine lover, we found something that really says you went the extra mile (or continent!)
zChocolat.com will not only provide you with handmade gourmet chocolates, but offers a number of personal touches that will have your wine loving female eating out of your hand. You can have a box of chocolates for that special someone shipped direct from France. Made by world champion chocolatier Pascal Caffet, these chocolates are made in the French tradition with very little sugar, no preservatives, high cocoa content, no alcohol and 100% pure cocoa butter. You can choose from a number of different flavors, or select something from the “Romantic Collection” which captures flavors in heart shaped candies of milk chocolate Supreme with hazelnut praline, black Mystique vanilla Bourbon caramels, white Toquade filled with chocolate ganache and red Amore ganache scented with bergamot.
And it doesn’t stop with the chocolates — they come in a mahogany keepsake box that you can add optional personalization. This year it also comes with the heart that was cut-out from the box (my sample didn’t include that). You can also personalize a card, add a red heart padlock and even choose the combination. Make it her birthday, or your anniversary – then she’ll never forget! You can also add tiny little bears to the enclosure bag pocket — or perhaps a lavender pouch or heart sachet. And the absolute best part for those who don’t order in time?
If you are late for a gift or not absolutely certain your gift will arrive on the appointed date, a zChocolat.com Concierge will contact your recipient by telephone on the date you specify (weekends and holidays included) to let him or her know that a very important gift is on its way from France and when this special delivery is expected to arrive. The Concierge will disclose your name and the estimated delivery date and time, but will not give away the nature or content unless you specifically request it. If you place your order too late, your personal concierge will rescue you. Most gift recipients will appreciate this service, which adds the perfect touch of style to your luxury gourmet delivery. A charge of USD11.73 is applied. Setting a concierge call is very easy, simply select the “My concierge service” option located on the right of each product page and follow the instructions.
Now how completely fabulous is that!?! The zChocolat.com Romantic Collection comes in a number of different price options. The 12 chocolates in a personalized engraved mahogany box with personalized card, and red padlock will run you about $155 USD plus shipping.
They also do corporate gifts. And for the one-time cost of a VIP membership, you get a welcome gift of a deluxe Ruby box engraved with your name and 30 pieces of chocolate. The VIP membership gives you future discounts on gifts, along with savings on logo or photo engraved customization on each box you order. And best of all — the chocolates are deliciously decadent! Pair with a nice bottle of port for Valentine’s Day, or anytime!
So, if you want to get your wine lover a Valentine’s gift that will let him or her know that you really care, we suggest The Durand vintage bottle opener or a box of chocolates from zChocolate.com.
Looking for more ideas? Check out our previous posts…
And for Valentine’s Day dinner and pairings ideas…