The Worst Wine Gifts

Few other consumer products, and particularly consumable consumer products, have spawned as many “accessories” as wine. If you have a wine lover on your gift list this holiday season, it’s pretty easy to satisfy them without ever digging into your cellar for a bottle.

Yet with abundance, comes absurdity also. With all of the following Stupid Wine Gifts, what really interests me is the moment of conception. I would have wanted to be in room to hear those famous words, “I have a great idea”, and actually listen to these folks explain the necessity of getting the following to market

Yes. It’s a wine glass embedded into a beer mug. Why? For those who like wine, but presumably prefer to drink out of a beer stein. The question arises, what disability of mind or body would provoke a person to prefer the “WineStein” to the wine glass. And of course, the even more interesting question is what set of circumstances would convince a friend that a wine-loving person in thier lives needed this thing. The product description alerts us, presciently, to the following: “Handsomely gift boxed for giving or storage”. Storage is likely to be the key use of this gift. Only $14.00

Like so many stupid wine gifts, the primary problem with the “Giant Wine Glass” is that the creators don’t know its a novelty item. Instead, they think its an item of great utility. This in turn means the creator of this 750ml wine glass, which holds an entire bottle of wine, assumes there are folks out there who much prefer to empty an entire bottle of wine into their glass, rather than refill the smaller glass on occasion. Does this need really exist? And don’t those that possess the need to carry around 750ml of wine in a single vessel know that such a thing already exists and in fact is free with every bottle of wine they buy? Only $20.00

Is getting  cork out of a bottle really that hard? Maybe not because this is clearly not a simple cork removal devise. It has much more utility. From the product description: “The newly designed IXO Vino not only makes the perfect Christmas gift for any DIY enthusiast, wine fanatic or anyone who appreciates inventive design, it’s also a great talking point when opening wine over a festive dinner”. I don’t ask much of my FERMENTATION Readers. But this I will ask: If my ability to find things to talk about at my own dinner parties deteriorates so greatly that I need to resort to power tools, please….put me down. I’m done. Please note that the corkscrew attachment to this cordless drill is a “limited edition”. Get’em while they last. Buy it here.

This is not the first contraption to help us lug around a wine glass and a plate. Just the dumbest. I really can’t do this little product justice, so allow me to let the product description speak for it: “Ever been at a party and wondered how you’ll balance you wine glass, hors d’oeuvres and scintillating conversation all at the same time. Our handy little Fingerfood plate slips onto you finger just like a ring, so now you can hold your snack and your glass in the same hand, leaving your other hand free for eating, shaking hands, or general gesticulating. They’re certainly conversation starters, too – so eat, drink, and be merry. One size fits most.” Best of all, “one size fits most”. $9.31 for ten little finger plates

WinerackbraTHE WINE RACK
This product is apparently sold out in most places. That means one of two things. Either the creators of this product, like me, underestimate the desire of women to carry 25oz of liquid in their bra or many women, upon seeing this incredibly sexy hidden bladder devise, just had to have it. I’m not sure which. However, It is clear that the wine rack is design to get alcohol into places where it’s not allowed to be. A worthy goal, I agree and there is no doubt that the Wine Rack would likely get the job done. What I question is the value of having a friend who either needs this item, wants this item or would use this item. From the product description: “Take a bottle of wine, a mixed drink or a fifth of your favorite hardstuff to the movies, ball games, EVEN THE PTA MEETING” (emphasis mine).$30.00

I’ll admit that there are wine lover and wine collectors that will go out of their way to put something in their cellar that few others possess. Many of us know these folks. But there is a limit to the degree to which we help foster such obsessions. I think Vietnamese Scorpion Wine might just fall into that category. It’s said that these items are aphrodisiacs. Here’s the thing, if your woman or man will drink this stuff, its equally likely that you don’t need them to drink this stuff to convince them to get it on with you. They’ll clearly do anything. And if you are considering this for the wine lover that has everything, consider that it’s really not necessary to possess absolutely everything.  $99.00


What ever happened to the refrigerator? Hell, what happened to the freezer? The Corkcicle will get your wine to the temperature you want it by placing the Corkcicle into the wine bottle. Note, a full glass worths of wine needs to be removed from the bottle before the Corkcicle will fit into the bottle. I wonder if you chill the bottle first, to make sure that first glass is appropriately chilled, before chilling the bottle with the corkcicle? It doesn’t matter. This is one of those wine tchotchkies that someone, somewhere believes wil produce a demand large enough to go forward with design, development and production. :::sigh::: Don’t buy this for your wine loving friend. For the cost of the Corkcicle, you can buy a dandy bottle of wine that your friend will actually use. $22.95

Do you really want to rent a row of vines for the purpose of having access to wine made from the vineyard in which the row you rented resides? Really? Let me break this down. Sold primarily in the UK, Rent A Row of Vines sells for 99 British pounds. For this, you two bottles of wine from a specific vineyard, a gift box, and information about the vineyard. This is one of those gifts aimed at the wine lovers who have just now learned the difference between Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc and area ready to move on to Cabernet Foolishignon. Again, just buy your friends a couple of bottles of wine the same way someone would buy their their good friend a telescope instead of a star named after them. However, if you must….

Call me an introvert or too vain, but this “Wine Stem Glass Holder” is the dumbest looking piece of paraphernalia a wine lover could possibly wear. This weird cross between a glass holder and fashion accessory is built for someone that has ZERO vanity but who also spends way too much time at gatherings keeping their hands full of food. My advice is this: find a place to set down your wine glass, hold the plate of food in one hand, use a utensil to eat from that plate, put the utensil on the plate when a bout of thirst arrives, pick up glass, drink. Better yet. Sit down at a table. $5.00



26 Responses

  1. Steve Howe - December 18, 2011

    You have to laugh at these….there are some creative minds out there. You have to wonder if they are actually making any profits.

  2. Bob - December 18, 2011

    Wish I’d invented the Wine Rack. Actually, just want to be in charge of testing. lol

  3. Tom Wark - December 18, 2011

    Improving on a design is always an option. I suppose testing would be required.

  4. El Jefe - December 18, 2011

    One suspects you have never been to a PTA meeting…

  5. gretchen - December 18, 2011

    I sent my folks to Wine Enthusiasts Toast of the Town a couple of years ago and the wine stem glass holder came with the tickets. Mom wouldn’t use hers, but Dad did and he LOVED it. It ended up being a great conversation starter and he had an extra hand when it came to the food tasting tables.

  6. asianguyensingle - December 18, 2011

    I got the snake wine from this site and it’s good.
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  7. Kristy C. - December 18, 2011

    Who needs a giant wine glass? Don’t they realize an entire 750ml bottle fits inside a Riedel Burgundy glass? Sadly, I’ve demonstrated it on several occasions.

  8. Yvonne Turner - December 18, 2011

    Finger food plates – hilarious!

  9. Wineeconomist - December 19, 2011

    I know the wine glass holder looks dorky, but it is surprisingly useful if, like me, you tend to talk with your hands. I’ve been given products like this at two wine tastings — one in Italy and another of Italian wines here in the US — and found them unexpectedly useful. Maybe not as useful as finger food plates …

  10. bruce - December 19, 2011

    The wine glass holder is a common item at wine festivals, where one carries one’s glass between numerous winery booths. They are made by many crafts people in a wide variety of configurations. It’s not a new idea.

  11. Doug Wilder - December 19, 2011

    The only people I ever see with the wine stem holders are ultra geeks at big wine tastings. If I am ever seen wearing one people should know they have my permission to slap me back to my senses.

  12. Patrick - December 19, 2011

    This put me right into the holiday mood.

  13. Nubian - December 19, 2011

    I have the neck wine glass holder for our annual Rhapsody in the Vineyard. Yup, I am that white trash. ;~)

  14. Helene - December 19, 2011

    I’m scared to admit that I know a few men who would wear the wine rack to concerts, games, etc. Who says only women have racks anymore?

  15. Marcia M - December 19, 2011

    So Bosch is trying to appeal to their female power tool-buying target market? Interesting… Do they really think she’s gonna keep the cordless screwdriver in a kitchen drawer? There are so many rejoinders possible here it boggles the imagination. Thanks for helping with the wish list, Tom.

  16. Tom - December 19, 2011

    Hey — those giant wine glasses are great for holding business cards!

  17. Mary - December 19, 2011

    This is great. Although I could probably use the wine rack, because, you know.

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  25. Max Beauchamp - August 17, 2015

    It may interest your readers to know that we sell many thousands of our freehand wine glass holders to wine & food festivals throughout new Zealand, Australia, the United Kingdom & USA.
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