Lever-style corkscrews are designed to use leverage rather than muscle power to pull the cork, but many such models are unwieldy and bulky. We wanted a wine opener that could cleanly and effortlessly remove any type of cork, took minimal cajoling (the fewer steps, the better), and fit neatly in a drawer. So we gathered 17 models ranging from $8 to $100—everything from lever-style openers, to waiter’s corkscrews (in which the lever rests on one side of the lip of the bottle), to twisting pull models, and winged designs—and opened cases of wine until we narrowed our choices to seven. That lineup did not include our previous winner, which lost out to models that were at least as intuitive, more compact, and far less expensive. After wine-opening novices and experts alike test-drove our finalists on both natural and synthetic corks, a sleek, economical, lever-style corkscrew was dubbed the premier pick. And at a fraction of the cost of our old favorite, we had more to spend on a good bottle.
The nonslip grip and narrow, straight blade let testers remove the smallest bones with precision and complete comfort. Perfectly balanced with enough flexibility to maneuver around tight joints. The low price was a bonus.
Hefty in weight, this knife was a solid performer when removing poultry bones, and the handle was easy to grip, even when covered in chicken fat. Piercing silver skin was a challenge since the tip wasn’t sharp enough and the long narrow blade produced slightly jagged cuts.
|Recommended with Reservations|
The sharp tip performed well when removing silver skin, but it was too flexible when maneuvering around poultry joints, leaving testers feeling a lack of control. The heavy handle was slightly unbalanced and became slippery once covered in poultry fat.
Designed to replicate a samurai blade, this expensive knife was a disappointment. It struggled to pierce the silver skin, although long cuts were smooth and even. Minimal flexibility and extreme curve got in the way when maneuvering around joints. The smooth handle was hard to grip and slippery.
The large, cumbersome handle reminded testers of an outdoors knife for fishing and hunting. The blade was too wide to maneuver around joints and it struggled to pierce silver skin. Unlike other knives, this boning knife could only slice in one direction, making intricate cuts around joints difficult.
The blade was so flexible it led to erratic cuttings; testers said the knife was hard to control. The blade was not sturdy enough to maneuver around joints and the lightweight handle felt flimsy and unbalanced.
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