Subject: Corked wine solution from the LA
Times Does it really work
Simple solution for cork taint
March 28, 2007
really in that wine?
CORKED wine is the ultimate wine disappointment,
all the more crushing when the bottle in question is a costly, highly
anticipated extravagance. One whiff of the aroma of old gym socks, the
signature scent of trichloranisole (TCA), and the
only option is to pour the bottle down the sink.
Or is it?
Mel Knox, a San Francisco-based oak-barrel broker who represents French cooper Taransaud, says there is an easy solution, particularly
when the cork taint is relatively mild.
In a glass pitcher, wad up roughly a square foot of Saran Wrap or other
polyethylene plastic wrap. Pour the tainted wine over the plastic wrap in the
pitcher. Expose all of the wine to the plastic wrap by gently swirling the wine
in the pitcher for five or 10 minutes. The more pronounced the taint, the
longer the wine should be exposed to the plastic wrap. For stubborn cases,
repeat the plastic soak with a fresh wad of wrap.
Pour out a small amount of wine to test the results and when the taint is gone,
decant the wine into another container. Toss the plastic and enjoy the wine.
Polyethylene absorbs TCA like a sponge, says Brian Smith, president of Vinovation, a "wine fix-it shop" that is
experimenting with different plastic-filled cartridge filters that can be
thrown into cork-tainted barrels or tanks to absorb TCA.
As offensive as cork taint is, from a health standpoint it's harmless. Cork taint derives its name from cork closures. The prime
cause is a reaction between a mold found in cork crevices and chlorine-containing
cleaning compounds used to clean the corks. Its presence also can be traced to
wineries where phenolic wood preservatives come in
contact with chlorine compounds. Once TCA infects a winery, it is difficult, if
not impossible, to eradicate.