Corks seal a wine`s fate: aging under natural vs synthetic closures


Most foods are best as fresh as possible. I remember picking peaches at my grandfather’s ranch in Northern California and eating them on the spot. What a taste! But the exceptions to this rule are the many wines that actually need some aging to taste their best. Winemakers know this, and work to control the aging process including decisions they make about how to bottle up their product.

Aging and oxygen

One aspect of aging has to do with the reaction of fruit acids with the alcohol. This process reduces sourness in the wine, but it’s really only important for very tart wines, the ones coming from cold climates.

The complex oxidation process is the second aspect of aging. When oxygen interacts with a wine, it produces many changes – ultimately yielding an oxidized wine that has a nutty aroma. This is a desired taste for sherry styles, but quickly compromises the aromas in fresh white wines.

 


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