Do wine chilling cubes really work?

By / Magazine / October 21st, 2015 / 177

I was thinking about buying a set of those wine chilling cubes. Do they really work?

I don’t know about you, but my refrigerator and I have a pretty good relationship. It offers me access to its chilly interior and I’m willing to give it 30 minutes or so to make my beverages cool enough to drink without kicking a dent in its door out of thirst frustration.

While I’m well aware that the 21st century is a busy place to be a wine lover, the need for the artificial insemination of cold cubes or alternative cooling sources into your vino seems like a cop-out to this wine guy.

But, as usual, I digress.

What you’re talking about are those chubby, poker-chip-sized discs that are filled with what I’m assuming is H2O. The idea is to store them in your freezer, dropping a couple into your stemware to make your fresh-off-the-shelf white, red or rosé palatable. Though using old-school ice cubes would do the job, as they melt they will water down your wine, which isn’t cool.

Do they work? The answer is, they do; surprisingly well and quickly to boot.

In your honour I combined two of the thingamajigs with a room-temperature Pinot Grigio and was all set to imbibe in less than five minutes. Even better, they kept the wine from warming right up to the last drop.

Scotch fans, who are notoriously divided regarding the addition of ice to their chosen tipple, have specific ones built for their harder liquor.

Made from soapstone, they look like, well, small rocks, which perform the same duty as their plastic cousins while looking hipper floating in the booze, because scotch aficionados are all about looking hip.

Of course, while you can you live without either version, if time just isn’t on your side they’ll diminish the time it takes to get your lips to glass.


Fresh, funny and down-to-earth, Peter Rockwell is the everyman's wine writer. Born in Halifax, Nova Scotia he's worked in the liquor industry for over 30 years and has written about wine, spirits & beer since graduating from the School of Journalism at the University of King's College in 1986. His reviews and feature articles have been published in Tidings, Vines, Occasions, Where and on to name a few; he has been a weekly on-air wine feature columnist for both CBC-TV and Global Television and his wine column 'Liquid Assets' appeared weekly in two of Nova Scotia's daily newspapers, 'The Halifax Daily News' and 'The Cape Breton Post.' Today Peter's irreverent answer man column 'Bon Vivant' appears each month in Tidings Magazine and his weekly 'Liquid Assets' column is published across Canada in editions of the METRO newspaper. When not drinking at home, and at work, Peter travels the globe looking for something to fill his glass and put into words.

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