It’s rare that the tools used by professionals at the top of their industry are available to general consumers. But Hak Soo Kim, Assistant Head Sommelier at the legendary New York restaurant Per Se, makes use of a tool at home that you can buy and add to your bar cart today — unfortunately, it’s not his finely tuned palate and encyclopedic knowledge of wine (but it’s almost as good). It’s called Coravin, and it’s the most technologically advanced wine preservation system on the market. We caught up with Kim to find out more about how he uses Coravin, why it’s important and how it can improve your home wine-drinking experience.
Q: How did you first come across Coravin? What were your impressions when you used it for the first time?
Hak Soo Kim: I was the wine director at a restaurant called Jungsik, a two Michelin star restaurant; Korean-inspired fine dining in Tribeca, New York City. So that’s where I kind of learned my art. I joined the service team in 2012, six months after the restaurant had just opened. Then, in the fall of 2012, Jungsik was awarded one Michelin star, and then two stars in the following year. So, naturally, the wine list had to grow and offer more prestigious wine by the glass such as Opus One and Château d’Yquem. Coravin was the perfect tool that enabled us to elaborate the by-the-glass program. Since I joined the wine team in 2013, I used the Coravin system for six years until I left the establishment to join Per Se in 2019.
Q: How can Coravin improve someone’s at-home wine drinking experience?
HSK: If you buy a nice bottle from a store, you kind of have to get your mindset ready to finish the bottle right away — you worry because wine changes so rapidly that you don’t want to miss out on the experience. You do have part of the nervousness, if the quality of the wine, or the taste of the wine will decline — but Coravin prevents that from happening. It gives anybody who’s using the device an opportunity to taste the wine for a much, much more extended period of time.
Or let’s say you’ve bought a case of wine and then you’re just curious how the wine is tasting and instead of waiting to have three or four guests that you’re going to share the wine with, you can just go ahead and use a Coravin to take some wine out and just taste it with you and your loved one — just two glasses of a bottle to see how it is.
Q: What’s your biggest tip for using Coravin?
HSK: My recommendation for all Coravin users is to actually remove the metal foil at the top of the bottle. You can check the condition of the cork because, you know, you don’t want the needle to go into the same hole again and again.
Hak Soo Kim’s Must-Have Wines for Using Coravin
Cabernet-Sauvignon 2016 by Trefethen Learn More: Here
Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru “Morgeot” 2017 by Domaine Ramonet Learn More: Here
Sauternes 2001 by Château Guiraud Learn More: Here
The Coravin Model Six is the ultimate wine preservation system. It allows you to pour single glasses of wine without opening a bottle. To find out more about the system and add one to your bar cart follow the link below.
Buy Now: $400