Some of us are cursed with sulfite sensitivities: we drink a glass of wine and then spend the next several hours to a day feeling miserable. Migraines, wheezing, swelling, and itchiness can all be punishment for drinking that delicious beverage that just happens to contain one annoying ingredient.
Chemist James Kornacki developed a way to rid your wine of sulfites so you no longer have to go hunting for the one bottle in the store that’s labeled “sulfite free.” In winemaking, sulfites are used for a multitude of reasons – but none of those reasons are valid anymore once the bottle is opened. So Kornacki’s sulfite intervention comes between the bottle and the glass.
The Üllo is a small filter that sits in the mouth of your wine glass. You pour the wine through it, removing sulfites and sediment while also aerating the wine. The trademarked process of Selective Sulfite Capture reduces the amount of sulfites in your wine to a much safer 10 ppm. (Obviously, if you have an allergy to sulfites rather than a sensitivity, you’ll want to talk to your doctor before indulging – even with the Üllo helping you out.)
To use, you just place the filter in the mouth of your cup and pour the wine. The Üllo consists of a dishwasher-save silicone cup on top and a small aerator on the bottom. In between the two pieces is the filter – it’s a small disc-shaped polymer device that looks a bit like a tea bag. It catches all of the sulfites and sediment before they have a chance to reach your glass.
The aerator can be turned off if you’d prefer to skip that function, and each filter will last through a single bottle of wine. Üllo is on Kickstarter raising funds for a first production run, so currently you can get one with a pack of five filters for $50 (retail value $70). You can also order an Üllo-specific decanter or carafe, or spring for the special countertop holder that catches the drips after you remove the Üllo from your vessel of wine.