Though most commonly recognized as the best choice in closures for bottled wine, the great debate between corks and screw caps is not as black and white as you might think. Take a few minutes to understand the pros and cons of both traditional corks and metal or plastic screw caps, also known as Stelvin closures.
Because they come from a tree, traditional corks are technically a renewable source, but it should be noted that cork trees take time to mature and are a limited source. The cost of a well made cork is usually about 50 cents, so in comparison to a screw cap they can be expensive. Because they are also natural, there is always a small chance that the cork could be flawed and in turn cause the wine to spoil.
Screw Caps and Cork Alternatives:
Screw caps (also known as Stelvin closures) are in comparison much cheaper, costing wine makers anywhere between 5 and 20 cents a unit. Though it was once argued that when aging wine a screw cap wouldn’t allow wines to breath, “today you can buy screw caps with calculated levels of ‘oxygen ingress’ overtime” -WineFolly. Cork alternatives made from synthetic material are also popular with larger scale producers, but can be flawed as well.
Both screw caps and traditional corks have their place in the wine world. Because of their price you will often see traditional corks on $30+ bottles of wine but there is nothing ever wrong with a screw cap! Just remember to enjoy.
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