Corkscrew Museums

There are several corkscrew museum around the world now.  On these pages we will provide a short description and some pictures for your enjoyment.  Click on the one you want to see.

Musée du Tire-Bouchon
Brother Timothy at the CIA
Musée le Secq des Tournelles
The Center of Unusual Museums
Museo de la Cultura del Vino
The Virtual Corkscrew Museum
Museo di Cavatappi
Domaine Gerovassiliou Wine Museum


Musée du Tire-Bouchon

MuseeTB.jpg (4820 bytes)

Located in Mènerbes in the South of France, within the Domaine de la Citadel winery whose proprietor, Yves Rousset-Rouard, is an avid corkscrew collector himself. The Corkscrew Museum has over a 1,500 pieces very nicely displayed. The exhibits were reorganized in 1998 by Ron MacLean, a Canadian corkscrew expert. The exhibits have several unique pieces from the 17th century as well as their modern counterparts for contrast. The corkscrews were lent to a Japanese wine institute during 1996-97 and the museum now has a relationship with that organization. If you are in the South of France, visiting this exceptional Corkscrew Museum is a must.

Also, while you are there, visit their store where they sell wine, a large variety of new corkscrews and other paraphernalia related to wine. Corkscrew posters and postcards are among the nicest around and the "T" shirts are well designed. The Domaine de la Citadel also offers wine-tasting sessions.

The museum is opened from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. every day from April to September and from Monday to Friday from October to March. For groups, they prefer advance appointments.

Musée du Tire-Bouchon
Domaine de la Citadelle
84560 Mènerbes
France

For North Americans, dial the following numbers:
Tel: 011-33-04-90-72-41-58
Fax: 011-33-04-90-72-41-59

Brother Timothy's Collection at the Culinary Institute of America

The exhibition at the Culinary Institute of America's Greystone facility in Napa is the first class collection of the legendary Brother Timothy of the Christian Brothers winery fame can be seen.  His corkscrews are on a permanent display at the CIA West and if you are in California, it is a must see.

The collection was started in 1949, the year before the Christian Brothers purchased the Greystone property.  But by the time they were ready to open the facility to visitors, about the beginning of 1955, Brother Tim had about 200 or more pieces in his collection.  They displayed the corkscrews for visitors to see while they were waiting to take a tour of the wine operations - to keep them occupied, you might say.  And today, they are displayed in cases and cabinets as you will see below, almost returning to the early days of the collection keeping visitors occupied while they wait for the tours.

In a 1993 interview, Brother Tim recalled that: "My initial motivation, before we started Greystone, was to study them and find out about the function of corkscrews.  Which were the ones that performed properly?  Which were the bad ones?  So I was concerned about the efficiency or function of corkscrews, at first."

There is one more thing that needs to be said and that there is fabulous food to be had at the CIA restaurant located at the North end of the building.  And if you are into cooking, they have theatres where the experts do demos and a Campus Store for everything related to cooking and wine you could imagine.

Now here are pictures of the showcases, but you just have to see them in person.  Click on the thumb-nails below to see the whole story.

Cab1Advert.jpg (89583 bytes) CabAnimalFarm.jpg (71740 bytes) CabBroTimFavorites.jpg (81187 bytes) CabCorkRemovers.jpg (51301 bytes) CabEvolution.jpg (67663 bytes) CabEvolution2.jpg (69924 bytes)
Advertising corkscrews Animal Farm Brother Tim's Favorites Screw-less cork removers The evolution of the corkscrew And more on the evolution
BroTim3s.jpg (72166 bytes) CabHornsTusks.jpg (52093 bytes) CabLittlePeople.jpg (93955 bytes) CabModern.jpg (62353 bytes) CabMultiPurpose.jpg (73924 bytes) CabPocket.jpg (56600 bytes)
Brother Tim proudly shows off his treasures Handles of horn and tusks The "Little People" Modern corkscrew Multi purpose corkscrews Pocket corkscrews
Here we see Brother Tim beside a large mural showing how wine was made in the early days of Greystone, circa 1920.  Of course, prohibition had hurt the Napa wine trade, but they survived and unquestionably prospered.  People like to say that: "If you want to make a small fortune in wine in the valley, start with a big one".  Seriously, however, the Napa valley is a hot property and everyone from movie people to multinational wine firms are there.  Some of the small operators make outstanding wines, and several have corkscrew collections on display for visitors.

Here he is posing beside the plaque explaining to visitors about him and the collection.  The Culinary institute people are most hospitable and will assist in any way you need.

Here we photographed Brother Tim and Hillery Hersberger one of the CIA's Concierges at Greystone holding the famous painting of Brother Tim with a corkscrew.

The painting beside Brother Tim's Office.

The Culinary Institute of America Greystone
2555 Main Street
St. Helena, California, 94574
U.S.A.

Restaurant reservations: (707) 967-1010
Tour reservation: (707) 967-2328

Musée le Secq des Tournelles

The museum at Rouen, France has amassed what may well be the most important collection of antique steel implements and tools.  The museum is housed in the old church of St. Laurent, a part of the museum of Fine Arts of France.  It was established in 1921 and was given the extensive personal collection of objects by Henry Le Secq des Tournelles (1854-1925).  The collection has been enriched ever since and now there are in excess of 15,000 pieces of a wide variety of provenances, but primarily European in origin.  All the ages since Roman times are represented and all kinds of items can be found there, including some wonderful corkscrews, but there are no arms related objects.  It should be noted that not all of the museum's collection is on display at any one time, so if you do research, it is advisable to contact the curators to get permission to examine the items of interest.  Here are another three fabulous pieces for your pleasure:



Rouen, France
Can be seen on website:
http://www.discoverfrance.net/France/Museums/Secq-Tournelles.shtml

The Center of Unusual Museums

This is the privately owned museum established by a German entrepreneur/collector.  There are several unique collections including a collection of chamber pots and a fine collection of corkscrews.  If you are in the area, this is well worth a visit.
Several glass cases hold the collection in this Museum where everything seems to be a little strange use.  I suppose the creator/curator of the museum felt that corkscrew collecting is "weird", so he built a collection for his museum.

The collection contains some excellent German patents, rare pieces from all over the world and an assortment of other, less costly corkscrews.

The pieces are held in large cabinets built such that getting into them is quite difficult without the proper glass handling equipment.

While there is no documentation or writeup on the museum's contents, a small brochure is easy to come by, just for the asking.  The lion's share

The Museum has the following collections (and some small ones in addition).

1. Schutzengel

2. Ethnic dolls collection

3. Ur-Wolpertinger

4. Rachttopf

5. Tretauto

6. Corkscrew museum.

83708 Kreuth-Enterbach, Tegenseer Str. 32, Germany
Tel: 0 80 22/9 53 00

Bodega and Museo de la Cultura del Vino in Briones, La Rioja, Spain

This museum is one of the best in the World for both wine related items and has a lot of excellent corkscrews on display.  Well worth the visit when you are in Spain.

Inside the Museum there is a display of original pieces dating from Mesopotamian times
to Picasso, and of course they show a selection of about 3000 pieces from their great
corkscrew collection, arranged in cabinets depending on the type, material, origin... of the corkscrew.

In the wine business it's considered as the best Wine Museum in the World (as an example, they were awarded in 2004 The Best in wine tourism, in Melbourne, Australia and recently" Best Winery for 2009 by VEREMA.com) in terms of modern conception, quality and diversity of the collections, educational... and in the of region La Rioja it has become the most visited tourist attraction with about 150,000 visitors a year.

Contact details:

Rafael Vivanco
Bodegas Dinastia Vivanco
26330 Briones
La Rioja, Spain

T. +34 941 32 23 32F. +34 941 32 23 16
e-mail: rvs@dinastiavivanco.es
Website: www.dinastiavivanco.es
 

The Virtual Corkscrew Museum

This museum is a "virtual" one as the whole thing is on the web, the actual premises are not available for visit.  However, Don Bull, the "curator", is easy to contact at: corkscrew@bullworks.net.  A weekly newsletter is also published, the "Weekly Screw" to which you can subscribe at the same address.  He has also authored over 20 books on corkscrew related information and is involved in selling corkscrews as collections or individually on his website, eBay and the ICCAuctions website.
The Virtual Corkscrew Museum has its roots in a small corkscrew website begun on America On Line in 1994. By 1999, the museum had grown to a nine megabyte site and in May the museum moved to www.corkscrewmuseum.com. Since May 1999, the museum has had over 28,000,000 page hits.
Here are some other museum facts as of July 1, 2008:
- The museum has 36 "rooms"
- There are about 4000 html pages in the museum
- There are over 16,000 photos in the museum
- Individuals from 102+ countries have visited the museum

Museo dei Cavatappi

This museum was born from the passion for collecting antique corkscrews by Paolo Annoni, a chemist born in Turin in Piedmont and moved two decades ago. A former wine cellar with vaulted ceilings in brick, lovingly restored, houses the Museum. The collection is divided into nineteen sections.
The Corkscrew Museum presents 500 pieces today, from various periods, countries and types. The corkscrew development history allows us to understand what has been the birth and evolution over the centuries of this everyday tool.  In 19 pages we can see corkscrews decorative and figural, but also pocket , advertising, multi-purpose systems, those themed animal, even erotic themes, and there are those miniature perfumes and medicines and precious corkscrews.  The wesbite is at: www.museodeicavatappi.it.  The museum is located by the Falletti Castle, Piazza Castello 4, Barolo.

Domaine Gerovassiliou Wine Museum

The corkscrew collection was started in the 1980s and counts more than 2600 exhibits today. Vangelis Gerovassiliou has one of the largest collections of corkscrews in the world. The collection includes rare and unique pieces dating back to the 18th century, true symbols of the technological advances, aesthetically pleasing and reflecting the era of late 17th century to this day.

This collection of corkscrews and wine-growing tools is housed in the Gerovassiliou Wine Museum, located at the heart of the Domaine's winery, next to the underground ageing cellars and the wine tasting room. Renovation of the site was carried out by scientists-professors of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and the new museum was inaugurated in 2008 by the President of the Hellenic Republic, Mr. Karolos Papulias.

Contact information:

Epanomi 57 500, Thessaloniki, Greece
T +30 2392 044 567 F +30 2392 044 560
ktima@gerovassiliou.gr


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