The Genesis device is the latest in a wide range of wine preservation devices available to help preserve the wine while drinking it. In the range of preservation options, the Genesis device is a giant leap from just stuffing the cork back in the bottle, both in terms of the technical ingenuity of the system and the price point, but it brings features and opportunities for private as well as wine business utility.
Created by Napa Technology, the Genesis builds on the technology used in the WineStation, a wine preservation and dispensing system used primarily by restaurants and wine bars since 2007.
The core of the system is the IntelliCork closure and dispensing head, which is the same for Genesis and the WineStation. After removing the original closure, the IntelliCork dispensing head is used to reseal the bottle, and in case of a still wine, a tube attached to the dispensing head is placed inside the bottle.
When the bottle is attached to the Genesis device, WineGas, a food grade Argon gas, is pushed into the bottle creating the pressure that pushes wine out through the dispensing head and protecting the wine from oxygen exposure inside the bottle.
According to the Genesis website, the system can preserve still wines for up to 60 days and sparkling up to 5 days. We tested out how well the system preserves a bottle of Zinfandel after four weeks, tasting the wine with weekly intervals.*
Day 7: The wine was still fresh and full flavored, but had opened up a little from first opening, as if it had been allowed to breathe in the glass for 30 minutes.
Day 14: The wine had lost a little bit of its freshness, but preserved its bold fruit flavors and did not seem oxidized.
Day 21: No discernible change from week two.
Day 28: Though still delicious, the wine had lost most of its freshness and resembled a bottle that had been opened a day or two.
Four weeks may seem like a long time to drink a single bottle, but part of the idea of the Genesis is that you can drink from multiple bottles of wine at the same time. The device comes with two IntelliCorks for still wine and one for sparkling, the pro version has more, and you can buy them separately too if you need more.
We also tested the Genesis on a bottle of sparkling wine. The Intellicork for sparkling works a little differently. You cannot dispense through it, but instead it seals the bottle and the WineGas repressurizes the bottle.
Three days after first opening and tasting the bottle of Prosecco, the wine still had sparkle and freshness.
We considered the trials a success, but is the Genesis right for you? With a price tag of $499, it’s clearly not for everyone, but targeting a niche of premium wine consumers and tasting rooms that pour library or limited edition wines. A niche it shares with the Coravin system.
It’s worth noting a few differences between the Genesis and Coravin systems. While the Coravin does not remove the original cork closure and promises much longer preservation times, the Genesis has the advantage of working on all closure types, not just natural cork, and it can be used for sparkling wines as well.
*The test was conducted under casual consumer conditions; wine was kept away from heat and light exposure during the test, but not refrigerated, which would likely improve the preservation further.
By Kim Johannsen