Editors' note: To close 2011, Palate Press: The online wine magazine will be featuring some of our top stories from the past year. Our first piece comes from the talented Erika Szymanski, who lends her passion and background for wine science to the screwcap/natural cork debate.
Search for “cork vs. screw cap” and you’ll find plenty of discussions on reduction-oxidation chemistry, an increasing amount of data, and plenty of arguing. What you won’t find is much comparing corks and screw caps on an environmental footing.
The pop of a cork is almost as synonymous with wine as the subsequent pouring, swirling, and slurping. Sometimes, though, the magic of this familiar ritual is ruined by the revelation that a bottle of wine is ... well, "corked."