Variations in temperature aren’t good for wine, so when I remove a bottle from the fridge, I’m never sure what to do with it to keep it at a good drinking temperature. Should I pour a glass, and return it to the fridge to keep it chilled, or should I leave it out, letting it come up to drinking temperature for my second glass?
I saw the VacuVin Rapid Ice Wine Cooler for under £10, so thought it was worth a try. It claims to chill wine in 5 minutes, and keep it cool for hours. It comes in a wide variety designs, but I decided to go for black as it was plain and understated (Also, it was one of the cheapest!). There is a wood texture and a grape design for those who like to be a bit different.
I took a bottle of white wine from storage, and it measured at 17 degrees celcius (around 63F). I had kept the Rapid Ice Cooler sleeve in the freezer all day; It folds flat (photo below) so fitted in my freezer’s ice tray well. When removed, it was pretty cold, but the outer was dry and hadn’t frosted over, which prevents drips all over your table when it melts. It is filled with a gel, which felt slightly slushy inside. I slide it over the bottle, which was a pretty standard size, and it was a nice snug fit. They also make a larger size for sparkling wine bottles.
I timed 5 minutes, and checked the temperature again: 12C (54F). I’d prefer my whites to be a bit cooler, so left it for another 5 minutes, after which it had dropped slightly to around 10.5C(51F) which was more to my taste. If your wine requires a cooler serving temperature, you’d need to seek the assistance of your fridge, and use the sleeve just to keep it cool.
After an hour, I checked again, and it had remained around the same 10.5C, which was not too bad! By then, the sleeve no longer felt very cold, so I imagine the wine would have slowly increased in temperature from then on. Not quite up to their claim of “Cool for hours”, but probably good enough for most! It could be ok for taking wine on a pic-nic, as long as you weren’t travelling far, but for just keeping a bottle chilled until it’s consumed, it does the job well for the low price.
The VacuVin Rapid Ice Cooler sleeve is widely available, but have a good look around, as sellers like Amazon seem to charge different prices for different colours and designs.