Cork; Screwcap or Artificial Cork – A Great Debate? – James Melendez

I am asked often what is preferred–cork, screwcap or artificial cork?  I do think that the hype of corked wine (wine that has expired due to cork failure) is over inflated.  I am not sure that 10% which is a number often cited as a percentage of corked wine is accurate.  I open up hundreds of bottles of wine per year and the number of corked wines I have experienced is certainly well under 10%.

I do enjoy and terribly so opening up a bottle via a traditional cork.  I like the challenge of opening it; I like the pop and it feels like the effort I should undertake to enjoy each bottle of wine I am to experience.  And if I cannot have a cork I will gladly take a screwcap. A screwcap is easy to open and in my opinion too easy to open a bottle of wine. I do like a challenge.  But the screwcap does not misflavor the wine; a synth cork truly is a terrible way to cap a wine.  The flavor leaves any wine completely off.  There is a plastic flavor that is imparted on the wine.  A synth cork is noticeable, for me, on the finish and it is most unpleasant.  I will always knock a point off of the wine I am reviewing by a whole point (on a ten grade scale) if it was capped with an artificial cork.

A wine maker that I see occasionally loves the synth cork and wants to switch her premium wines to synth cork; I have of course given my thoughts but I think it is a pure economic situation why she feels this way. So don’t be afraid of a screwcap but do avoid an artificial cork.



A plethora of wine reviews from wines regions from around the world. Read more of my wine reviews: © 2006 James Meléndez / Jaime Patricio Meléndez – All Rights Reserved.  James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter and most major social medias.

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About James Melendez

I love wine and have had the privilege of working in the wine trade as a senior national wine marketing manager for a wine, food and home goods retailer in 30+ US States. I executed into making wine experiential and made 'wines of the world' programme work in a highly regulated framework for a successful business proposition. My "wine" site also incorporates those categories intimately involved with wine such as food, travel and lifestyle. This site incorporates my many dimensions of interest. I love to review and also talk about many aspects of wine. I have been privileged to visit many wine countries and find them enthralling no matter how many times I visit. I love all aspects of wine: viticulture, history, winemaking, brand development, wine regions and many more aspects. This is a living tradition that needs documentation, education, reporting and reviewing. Do I have favourite varieties and styles? I love so many varieties and often it is situational and yet there are time honoured wines that I anticipate and I am passionate about. I like all colours of wine and all styles. I have had a mad passionate affair with sparkling wines and they are always top of mind. Wine nourishes our soul and is the key to connecting with other people at our dinner table. Salute, James © 2014, 2017 James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy— All Rights Reserved – for my original Content, logo, brand name, rating, rating graphic and award and designs of James the Wine Guy. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and other social medias.
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