Is pointing out a "corked" wine a buzz kill?

Inspired by Daniel Posner’s post in the Pimps section about corked wines, do all of you point out corked wines when you come across them?

I ask because I have several collector friends, with whom we share wine regularly. Some of them inevitably bring a wine that ends up showing corked. I always point it out and because of that I get called things like “cork magnet” or sometimes when a new bottle is opened, I get looked at like, “is this ok to drink, Mr. Corky?”

Recently as an experiment, we had one of these corked wines, but I did not say anything. I just chose quietly not to have any. Needless to say, everyone else finished the bottle and were perfectly happy.

So, is it a buzz kill to point out a corked wine?

Not a buzz kill at all, who wants to drink corked wine?

No more than saying “Oh, this is ‘Pinot Noir’? I thought it was an homage to Porto made from Lodi Zinfandel…my bad.”

I’ve ruined enjoyment for some by pointing it out. So be it. I’d rather educate them than let the lie live on. Plus it throws water in the face of the people drinking the wine they read on the label instead of what’s in the glass.

I think that it is a major disservice to all involved in tasting/drinking the wine if it isn’t pointed out by someone that detects it. I actually want it to be pointed out…as well as VA, brett and reduction…so that I can better recognize it the future.

Interesting question because people have different sensitivities (a la Laube). It sounds like you are more sensitive to it than your friends. I would have no problem if someone thought a wine was corked and I was enjoying the wine–I would certainly try to look for it for an educational experience, but if I like it, I like it-- why try to make things complicated? I actually feel sorry for people who are unusually sensitive to it.

Depends on the people involved and the level of cork taint.

With non-geek friends and very mild level I’ll ask how everyone likes the wine, and whether or not anyone doesn’t like it. This gives permission for someone to say they don’t like it, and I can agree and explain why. But I’ve been in many situations over the years where my friends are happy, and I see no point in ruining that. OTOH, if it’s badly corked I ask if people like the wine, but in a way or a tone that suggests there’s something wrong with it. They’ll usually use this as permission to agree there’s something wrong, mostly because they can taste it and partly because I lead them. Then we open another.

I learned long ago the hard way that non-geek friends think you’re a jerk if you start trying to teach them things about wine when they haven’t asked for any information. OTOH when they ask I’m glad to say whatever I can about the question. But that’s way in the minority of times.

With fellow geeks, hell yeah, I say it’s corked, what do you think?

Restaurants are tricky because of the cost and the fact that we try to order something good. If there’s a sommelier I ask them to taste it, and they’ve just about always agreed and replaced it. If there isn’t, I simply tell the server that the wine isn’t good and we’d like a replacement bottle. Mostly that’s gone OK, although there have certainly been some difficulties.

Good points Barnet. I was assuming wine geek dinners and such.

I prefer that people point it out – it can make for a good learning experience, or, at the very least, a good debate. [grin.gif] Actually, Cris recently brought my attention to some TCA that I initially pegged as “minerally earthiness.” It didn’t even cross my mind, initially, that the wine might be corked, but after it was pointed-out I could sense it. I thought the taint was slight, and I actually enjoyed the wine both before and after the taint was brought to my attention. I think I may have a high tolerance for it, or my preference for earthy wines leaves me more pre-disposed to dismiss very slight taint as “earthiness.” If people enjoy a tainted bottle before the taint is pointed out, then why can’t they enjoy it after the taint is brought to their attention? [shrug.gif] IMO, that’s a “them problem,” not a “you problem.”

Q: You know what a REAL buzz kill is with a corked wine?

A: *When a certain person, in NYC, brings corked wines (many times) - that were decanted mind you - and then pours it like it is just fine. Then, declares it wine of the night. ANd these are not QPR tastings/dinners.

  • Many reliable sources have passed this one on and it has been going on for years.

How would you like to be at THAT tasting. [middle-finger.gif]

WetRock’s mind tricks won’t work on me…

These aren’t the bottles you’re looking for.

These aren’t the bottles we are looking for. Move along.

Jeff–Yes, there are SOME people who get annoyed if you point out that the wine they brought is corked. Assuming people didn’t decant the wine in advance, there’s really no blame or shame in bringing a bottle that happens to be corked. If someone’s ego is so fragile that a corked bottle is going to get annoyed, then I wouldn’t want to hang with those folks.

Steve–Yes, I have run into some people who decanted a wine in advance, it was corked, and they continue to insist that the wine is not only fine but great. I don’t hang with those people.



For your palate? Yes. [stirthepothal.gif]

I’m starting to be amazed that you prefer your bacon chewy

OR, if someone HOSTS a tasting and their wine, which was opened in advance of the event, is corked and fails to replace the wine, as part of a larger theme - when their cellar is at their fingertips.


I dont know which is worse:

  1. Attempting to bring a 375ml to an offline of 8+ people


  1. Being cheap and not replacing a corked bottle at your own casa


Wow!! People actually do this?!? Can I please have some warnings PM’d to me.