Kevin Byrne, Director, Direct Dialog
Corkscrew design is similar to that of the mousetrap. For hundreds of
years, man has wracked his brain in search of easier and more humane
ways of getting the job done. On more than one occasion, pain and
heartache have resulted from the end product, which is one of the
reasons I love the Lazy Fish Corkscrew. It is a pleasure to use, but it
also looks good.
The origins of the Lazy Fish go back to 1888, when the lever mechanism
was patented as the ‘lazy tong’. However, it was not until the 1920s
that it was incorporated into a corkscrew design, but manufacturing
costs at the time meant it was not a viable commercial proposition until
it was rediscovered recently by those clever people at Bacchanal, the
producers of the famous La Cafetiere.
It requires none of the pulling and shoving needed in the application of
so many of its inferior brethren. Admittedly, you do have to turn the
device to twist the screw into the cork, but the modicum of effort is
more than amply rewarded with what follows. To extract the cork you
gently pull the tail of the fish and, pleasure of pleasures, the cork
comes sliding out.
No knees together bent over contortions. No, the series of levers do all
the work for you. So, if you want to drink like a fish at this time of
year, this one helps you without floundering around.
However, sheer practicality alone is not the marque of great design. The
Lazy Fish looks good and its aesthetic features are all practical
features. The jaws of the head open to direct the screw into the right
position. The eye is a rivet to stop the user pushing the screw too far
into the cork. The body is formed by the ingenious collection of levers.
The tail is the handle.
It was voted 1994 Gift of the Year by the housewares industry, and, as
if all this isn’t enough, by Gad it’s British too. So, what better gift
can there be for Christmas than the Lazy Fish to show appreciation to
your nearest and dearest. Or better still, buy one for yourself.