How to Open a Wine Bottle With a Two-Step Waiter's Corkscrew




Introduction: How to Open a Wine Bottle With a Two-Step Waiter's Corkscrew

Being able to properly open a wine bottle is a crucial (some may say most important) step in enjoying a fine wine. There are many different ways to open a wine bottle with many different tools for the job. This instructable will teach you how to properly use a two-step waiter's corkscrew to open a bottle.

The two-step waiter's corkscrew is a preferred opener in the beverage industry because of its ease of use coupled with its small stature in the pocket of a waiter. The corkscrew contains all tools that are necessary to properly open a bottle and provide an elegant look while opening.

Things needed to complete this instructable:

-One (1) bottle of wine It does not matter what kind of wine you use (red, white, blush) as long as it has a cork that is intended to be opened with a corkscrew.

-One (1) two-step waiter's corkscrew A two-step waiter's corkscrew will look as shown above. It will have a retractable knife used to cut the foil, a corkscrew, and a double step system.

-One (1) wine glass The wine glass can be any of your choosing (stem or stemless) and should accompany your choice of wine.

Step 1: Expose Knife and Place Below the Lip of the Bottle

DISCLAIMER: The photograph above is of AFTER the foil has been cut off the wine so that it can be clearly seen which lip of the bottle to cut around.

The waiter’s corkscrew will have a retractable knife on it that you will use to cut the foil off of the bottle. Place the knife below the lip of the bottle NOT above. This is done mainly for hygienic reasons. Many wine bottles can be stored for years in cellars where they can become dirty on the outside. It is best to cut the foil far enough away from the pouring spout so as to not contaminate the wine while pouring.

Step 2: Cut Around the Neck of the Bottle in a Circular Fashion

Grasp the bottle firmly in one hand and apply pressure to the back of the neck with your thumb. Rotate the bottle and the knife in opposite directions while applying firm pressure to cut the foil from the bottle. After one or two full passes with the knife, it is time to remove the foil.

Step 3: Remove the Foil From the Bottle

Press your thumb against the neck of the bottle opposite the knife. Use a scraping motion to peel the foil upwards and away from the bottle. Once you have separated the foil sufficiently from the bottle, finish removing the top portion of it with your hands. If necessary, use a clean napkin to remove any stray pieces of foil still remaining on the cut portion or near the cork.

Step 4: Insert the Corkscrew Into the Cork

Hold the bottle firmly with one hand and use the other to place the tip of the corkscrew against the center of the cork. Slowly twist the corkscrew while applying downward pressure to get it started into the cork. Continue twisting the corkscrew into the cork being careful to keep it travelling down the center and not towards the sides of the bottle. If you are to push the corkscrew too far towards the side of the bottle, you may break the cork off. Continue twisting the corkscrew into the cork until approximately ONE (1) twist remains. The reason for leaving one twist of the corkscrew out of the cork is in an effort to not push the metal entirely through the cork. Doing so will push cork residue into the wine and contaminate it.

Step 5: Use the First Step on the Corkscrew

Place the first step of the corkscrew onto the lip of the bottle. Use sufficient pressure with one hand to lever the cork out of the bottle using the first step as the fulcrum. Be careful not to bend the cork too much and risk breaking it. You simply need to begin pulling the cork from the bottle and do not need more than half of it coming up in this step.

Step 6: Use the Second Step of the Corkscrew

Set the second step of the corkscrew onto the lip of the bottle now. Using both steps allows you to remove the cork more simply with less chance of breakage. Use the second step in a similar manner to the first, once again being very careful to not break the cork. Once the corkscrew has been used to its full potential, simply pull on the corkscrew-cork combo to remove it from the bottle.

Step 7: Remove the Cork From the Corkscrew

Unscrew the cork from the corkscrew being careful not to break it. If you are to not finish this bottle of wine, you will want to re-cork it to keep it fresh.  When doing this, make sure to be careful to not poke yourself with the sharp point of the corkscrew.

Step 8: Remove the Cork From the Corkscrew

Look at the cork to make sure there has been no damage to it during storage. Signs of damage would include: cracks running up the sides of the cork, a wine level that can be seen to have absorbed into the cork past one third of its length, mold, or other signs of deterioration. If the cork is acceptable, pour yourself a small amount into your glass.

Step 9: Test the Wine

Having poured a small amount of wine (enough for a small sip) into your glass, swirl it around to test its aroma. You will want to test the nose (smell) of the wine to ensure its freshness. If your wine smells of damp leaves, mold, or mildew, your wine has gone bad. It will be a very distinct smell and you will know when your wine has gone bad. If you happen to be unlucky enough to have this experience, return your wine immediately and obtain a refund for it.

Step 10: Save Remaining Wine

Place the cork back into the bottle to maintain its freshness and not allow bacteria in. I personally insert the cork upside down into the bottle because it is easier. The top side of the cork has not swollen with wine and therefore slips much easier into the bottle. It is entirely your choice of how you reseal your wine bottle. There are many products on the market that available to reseal the bottle as well as vacuum seal it. Any of these options are feasible and really comes down to personal preference.

You have just learned how to properly open a bottle of wine with a two-step waiter's corkscrew. You are well on your way to a life-long love of wine. As always, remember to be safe when using these sharp objects and to follow all laws and age regulations when enjoying your wine.

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    5 years ago

    Thank you! I can now open a bottle of wine with a cork "all by myself".


    7 years ago on Introduction

    you must try this way !

    Opening wine bottles shouldn’t be complicated, and your step by step instructions is a great share. They only thing I would add is to be careful when cutting or removing the foil. There are many tools to open wine bottles but we truly believe this method is like a magical ritual leading to the final pop of the cork.We have a video with showing the same steps should you require further details. Visit us at


    9 years ago on Step 10

    Excellent Instructable!!

    I've never been able to open a bottle of wine without mutilating the cork. Now I can finally open my own wine!!