Corking Your Wine Bottles

Monday, July 23rd, 2007 at 12:00 am

corking wineStoring wine is an art simply because it is something that is not haphazardly done. It entails patience and meticulous detail from the person who will be undertaking such an precise and laborious task. However, being able to store your wine is an essential task so let me introduce to you the way of the cork, its usage and the different types that are available to you, the wine bottler.

If you do plan to store your wine for one and a half year or longer than that, it would be best that you use the Superior Grade, Size #9. The #9 Superior Grade Straight Cork is the same type of cork that one can find in most if not all commercial wine bottles. The straight corks are the ones which require a corker to press them into the neck of the bottle.

However, if you are bent on creating an extremely full-bodied wine or if you do plan to store it for more than three years, then your best cork to use would be the Extra First Grade, Size #9 Straight Cork. These types of corks are also of the same diameter of the "Superior Grade" corks but their difference is that they are much denser when compared to the former corks. These are 1-3/4 inches long as opposed to the "Superior Grade" corks which reach up to 1-1/2 inches long. These types of corks also require a corker to put them on bottles as well.

Finally, if you only plan on consuming all of your wine within the first eighteen months, then Mushroom Corks will be the most suitable type for you. Unlike the Straight Corks mentioned above, these can be put in by hand which is much easier.

The use of corks is straightforward. It is used to keep the liquid inside the bottle and it is also used to keep oxygen out the bottle and away from the wine. This is to prevent oxidation of the wine when exposed to the air. There are a lot of corks that are available to the public especially to the wine bottler. With so many types of corks available, one could easily find himself or herself stupefied with the variety of choices.

These types of corks that are mentioned in above are just a few examples of the corks that one might want to use based on the time that the wine will be consumed. Other factors have not yet been included in the consideration of other needs. Corks may also differ not only with the density but also with the type of material it is made out of. You will easily find that there are other choices for corks whether it is natural or synthetic. Of course there are advantages for using a specific type of cork so you might want to look into that as well. For now, as a first-time bottler, know that you have many options and that you need to review those options well.

Which Wine Bottle Corker Should I Buy?

All of the corkers we review put Straight Corks into a wine bottle equally well. They all utilize a compressing iris to compress the cork down to a diameter that can be easily plunged into the bottle. The main difference between these corkers is how fast they can be operated.

The most economical corker is called the Gilda Compression Hand Corker. It is well suited for corking 5 or 10 gallons of wine at a time.

If you plan on making more than 10 gallons of wine at a time, or you plan on bottling more than 200 bottles a year, you would probably rather have the Floor Model Corking Machine. It is a little faster, making larger bottling jobs a little easier to manage.

What Type Of Neck Capsules Are Available?

You can find two types of decorative neck capsules for wine bottles. Neck capsules are actually sleeves that fit over the neck of the wine bottle–just like what you see on commercial bottles at the store.

While these sleeves do add decoration to the wine bottle they also have a couple of other more practical functions. They help to eliminate the growth of mold and bacteria on the outward exposed surface of the cork while it is in storage. And, they also help to keep the cork in place, should it decide to push out of the bottle.

The Heat Shrink Capsules are made of a thin PVPP plastic that shrinks when they are exposed to heat. They can be applied to a wine bottle very easily by placing them over the wine bottle’s neck and then dipping them into hot water for a few seconds.

Heat Shrink Capsules add a very professional look that grabs attention. They come in nine different colors from gold to burgundy.

You can also get the Gold Foil Capsules. They are similar to the Heat Shrink Capsules in function, but are made of foil instead of plastic. You apply them to the neck of the wine bottle by simply crimping them down by hand.

The inside of the capsule is lightly coated with an adhesive that will stick to the neck of the bottle when it is moistened.

The Gold Foil Capsules are a very flashy decoration that fits well at a dinner party or celebration.


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