I want to gear up from my regular do the job corkscrew to a higher-top quality one, as they are a lifetime used
As I know the top ones in the market those days are Code38 and Chateau Laguiole with the Grand Cru series at the top.
Are there any other brands and manufacturers that are recommended?
Nothing compares to construction, execution, and feel of the Code 38. I would definitely recommend spending the money if you're in the market for a fancier key. My whole team at the restaurant uses them. They're expensive, but worth the spend. If not that, never seen a need for anything between a Pulltap and a code 38. I think the Laguiole's have a chunky feel for the action on the worm and the knife is weirdly long.
I use an older Code, circa 2012 or so, and have never replaced anything, but I'm considering finding a way to get the knife sharpened. If I feel like spoiling myself, the P-Type stealth is pretty amazing. I bought one for my significant other and she adores it.
A Durand is a must for any situation where you're regularly opening 20+ year old wine. I know you can open it with a regular ah-so, but the degree to which the Durand is more dependable and accurate saves so much time on the floor.
Morgan Harris Thanks for the detailed answer!