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ask dr. vinny

Hello there! I'm Dr. Vinifera, or "Vinny" for short. Ask me your toughest wine questions, from the technical aspects of winemaking to the fine points of etiquette. I hope you find my answers educational and even amusing. Looking for a particular answer? Check my archive and my FAQs. You can also follow me on Twitter: @AskDrVinny.

Dear Dr. Vinny,

I am about to open my own restaurant, and I was asked by one of my servers, what is the proper way to open a screwcap bottle of wine at a table?

—Stephen, Bristol, R.I.

Dear Stephen,

An enthusiastic twist and a "Boy, that was easy!" will probably do. For some more flair, you can grab the cap firmly with one hand, twist the bottle with the other, and make a loud "crack" noise (the closest you can get to a cork's pop) to loosen the seal. Then twist off the cap by rolling it down your forearm. I've only seen this done once, but it was mighty impressive. There's also a product on the market, a big stainless cap that fits over the top of a screwcap. It can be useful for some more stubborn screwcaps, because it helps with grip, and it gives the process some finesse. You can find it where you buy wine accessories.

—Dr. Vinny

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