Wine snobs would have you believe that glass bottles with corks are an essential part of the wine making process. While the ever increasing array of good quality screw tops wines currently on the market rather thumbs its nose to that idea, there is still a sound logic behind the concept of cork topped bottles.
Why do winemakers always use glass bottles with corks?
This has been the standard method for sealing and storing wine for nearly three hundred years, although the concept began as far back as 500BC. Cork is a natural product with quite remarkable properties. It is light and can float, thanks to a cellular composition that also endows it with an elasticity and ability to compress that are ideal to seal bottles of wine. A good cork will seal a bottle for up to thirty years but is relatively easy to remove.
The wine industry has struggled to come up with a satisfactory replacement for a natural cork. Plastic corks seal well but, lacking cork’s natural elasticity, become impossible to remove. Those that can be removed in return don’t provide a satisfactory seal to permit the wine’s natural ageing process to occur. Screw caps seal well enough, but there is an argument that suggests that cork allows just the correct amount of air to permeate the bottle to facilitate ageing, which doesn’t happen with a perfect screw cap seal.
Ultimately, popping the cork has become a ritual. People like the sound and enjoy the process and clever marketing on the part of the wine and cork industries has given alternative bottle closures a possible undeserved downmarket reputation.
Making your own wine in bottles with corks
Although humans have been making and drinking wine for a very long time now, some of the intricate chemistry of the process is still misunderstood, so when making your wine it’s probably best to stick to the traditional glass bottles with corks. Wares of Knutsford sell glass bottles with corks in a variety of sizes and shapes and which are useful for all sorts of endeavours.
You’ll find making vodka, vinegar or cider, for example, involves many of the same processes as wine making and that glass bottles with corks provide not only the ideal sealing and storage solution for them, but also allow you to present the product attractively as a gift or a favour on special occasions such as weddings. The bottles are also available in surprisingly economical bargain packs, as wine making and similar pursuits tend not to be practical in small quantities.