grettacook (grettaelizabeth) wrote,

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Science prevails

In my haste to add a third of a cup of dry white wine to my pot of chili verde tonight, I got a little rubber stopper stuck inside the wine bottle. Oops! I finished off the bottle during dinner (don't worry, it was half empty already when I started - hence the little rubber stopper). And then we faced a dilemma - give up the wine stopper for good? Smash the bottle? Suck the stopper out? Or use science?

I got the stopper partway out with suction. (Jon said it reminded him of the time I tied a cherry stem into a knot with my tongue.) But halfway up the neck of the bottle, I was stuck again. I didn't want to give up or make a broken glass mess, so I settled on science.

I had seen demonstrations in which a peeled hard boiled egg gets sucked, whole, into a bottle. (I had also seen demonstrations in which the egg ends up in little eggy bits all over the inside of the bottle, much to the delight of the children in the audience.)

I wanted to do that demonstration in reverse, and heat the air inside the bottle until the stopper popped out. Jon, full of nervous energy, was sure I was going to melt the bottle, or maybe shatter it, but whatever happened, it wasn't going to be good. His nerves were infectious, and as I stood holding the bottle with tongs in a pot of boiling water, I squeamed out and stopped before the stopper popped.

A few minutes later, Nervous Nelly safely out of the kitchen, I applied a little more oral suction to the bottle, and schlupp out it came.

Next time I'll probably wear goggles, though.
Tags: cooking, science, wine
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