Once wine is unsealed, rapid oxidization will cause it to change flavor. Recently though, a promising new startup device called Plum promises to extend the lifespan of wine with an automatic appliance that can preserve opened wine up to 90 days. The unique Plum dispenser is not your average wine accessory because it fits in more alongside other high-end kitchen appliances. It is the creation of David Koretz, a former security analyst turned entrepreneur. The system not only pours wine precisely by the glass, but also services wine at its optimal temperature, and ensures the integrity of that wine for up to 90 days. Plum works by first placing a standard 750ml bottle of wine in one of the Plum’s two receptacles. A pair of cameras within the appliance automatically identifies it from a database of more than 6 million labels by vintage, region, variety, and winery, and calibrates the internal temperature to the climatic conditions suggested, sometimes by the very vineyards responsible.
Climate control is handled by two thermoelectric, solid-state cooling units that chill continuously, and the algorithms are run by a powerful 64-bit quad-core processor. When time comes to pour out the wine, the Plum’s tiny, double-cored motorized injection needle springs into action and punctures the cork, composite, or any other cap material with surprising force. Once the bottle top has been punctured, the needle depressurizes the bottle’s insides with a small infusion of argon gas from a replaceable canister. That, in turn, forces the wine through a series of stainless-steel tubing and ultimately through a spout. Once the desired amount of wine is poured, the gas stops flowing and the bottle effectively reseals. All operational detailed steps are made available on the Plum’s panel. This is a 7-inch, full-color HD IPS touchscreen. The loaded wine’s label displays prominently in the center; if there are two bottles loaded, label displays will be alongside each other, and will also show the wine’s region of origin, a brief history, and even recent reviews. It is all delivered over the internet via Wi-Fi or Ethernet. It can also be updated over time.
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The Plum’s display also shows other necessary machinations for the wine inside. You can manually change the temperature settings, for instance, either by fractions of degrees or type of wine; for instance, 54 degrees for a Chardonnay or 65 degrees for a Cabernet Sauvignon. You can increase or decrease the Plum’s standard pour size. You can monitor the Plum’s level of argon, down to the number of bottles it can preserve before it will need to be replaced. You can even browse a history of the wines you have had. The argon canister holds more than 200 bottles worth of preservation and only needs to be changed about every 18 months. Of course, all this convenience does not come cheap. The Plum starts at $1,500. Naturally, this price is deemed fair given the Plum’s value because the pricier the pour and more extensive the collection, the more useful Plum becomes. The Plum is available for pre-order and begins shipping later in 2016, a good timing for the coming holidays.