Corkscrew in a cork.

How To Open A Wine Bottle Without A Corkscrew

Who doesn’t love a nice glass of wine after a long day at work? Or for a happy surprise from a friend. That is until you realize that your last corkscrew broke, and you haven’t picked up another one yet. You dug through every drawer in the kitchen to no anvil.

But that doesn’t have to be the end. You can still drink your wine! Here are seven ways to open a wine bottle without a corkscrew. 

Corkscrew in a cork.

Quick disclaimer: most of these methods aren’t 100% foolproof and, if done wrong, could damage the bottle or hurt yourself. So be careful.

Related: How to Clean Cloudy Wine Glasses


Using a screw to remove the cork might be the safest option on the list, and you most likely have everything required to tackle this method. It takes a little muscle power, but the result is a glass of wine or two.

The longer the screw you can find, the better, and drill it right into the cork. You might get a few bits of cork in the wine, but that’s not a big deal. Leave about an inch showing from the top. Find a hammer and lock the claw side under the screw. Treat the screw and cork just like you would for removing a nail from the wall. Pull the cork out and enjoy. 


Pushing the cork in is another safe method to open a bottle of wine. Granted, there are a few downsides to this method. Do be careful with this one as not to smash or break the bottle.

Find a wooden spoon or the handle of something similar. Place the butt of the utensil against the cork and press down. For a particularly stubborn cork, you can tap it down with a hammer or a heavy pan. Just be careful not to break it at the neck.

The biggest downside is that once you pop the cork into the bottle, it’s nearly impossible to remove the cork out of the bottle. If the wine is older, the cork may crumble, but you can always strain it out as your pour it into a decanter.

Wine glasses in front of grapes.


Simple and effective. Be careful and keep an eye out for too much pressure. You will need a bike air pump for this trick. Use the needle attachment and punch it into the cork. You’ll have to get it all the way through the cork for this to work. From there, just pump air into the bottle.

As air fills the bottle, the pressure will slowly push the cork out. Once the cork starts to shift out, it might help to place a towel over the bottle. After the majority of the cork is out, you should be able to remove the cork the rest of the way by hand.

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Twisting out the cork with a knife is an alternative to the first option. This time though, rather than using a screw, a serrated knife will be used. Drive the knife into the cork at a 45-degree angle. Once the blade is locked in the cork, twist the knife around, and after a few rotations, the cork should be loose enough.

The downside of this method is that you have to get it just right. Otherwise, your cork will crumble. From there, you will have to resort to option two and strain out the cork bits.

Related: How many glasses of wine in a box


This one might be a little risky, but it might do the trick. Wrap the bottom of the bottle in a think towel. Place it upside down between your legs in a sitting position. Proceed to slap it with a shoe.

Slapping the cork out can take some finessing. It will take a little bit of time as well. And you need to keep an eye on the cork and stop before it comes all the way out. You don’t want to go through all that work for your wine to end up all over the floor.


If you’re desperate to get into your bottle of wine and you have no tools, this one could get you out of a pickle. Proceed with caution from here. Wrap the bottle of wine in a towel or two just to be safe. Then smack it against the wall a few times.

There is a chance that the bottle will break with this method, and you won’t be able to get the cork out in a single shot. So take your time. But in a pinch, this last resort might just pop the cork.

Red wine pouring into a glass.


This might be the oddest sounding suggestion on this list, but it can work. You MUST start with a room temperature bottle. DO NOT HEAT A COLD BOTTLE. Use a blowtorch and apply heat right below the bottom of the cork. This will build pressure and slowly move the cork outwards. If you do choose to try this method, be sure not to burn yourself either. Glass can get very hot. You’ll want to slowly apply the heat. Don’t rush this process because the warm glass will not only heat the bottle, but there is always a chance for breakage.

Related: Wine: How to tell when you’ve drunk too much

Drink Up

While some of these methods aren’t common, and they should be used as a backup to having a corkscrew. Again, be careful with these tricks because they can quickly go wrong and might not always work 100% of the time.

But you can easily apply these next time you have a bottle of wine that needs to be drunk, and you find yourself without a proper corkscrew.

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