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Nov 23, 2009 04:05 PM

How can a screw top wine taste "corky"?

I bought an inexpensive $8 Spanish red Tuesday night wine. I was supposed to have nice fruit. What I got were musty corky nose and taste. My wine shop took it back. How can I call a wine "corky" when it's a screw top and doesn't have one?

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  1. "How can I call a wine "corky" when it's a screw top and doesn't have one?"
    you can't ;) seriously though, since it clearly didn't come from a TCA-tainted cork, the source of that musty aroma may have been the barrels in which the wine was aged.

    1. Corked aromas and taste are usually a result of contamination by TCA (2,4,6-trichloroanisole) or similar compounds. Though corks are a common source of TCA, they aren't the only source. See here for a short explanation by maria lorraine (who has also contributed a more detailed explanation that I'm not having any luck turning up):

      1 Reply
      1. re: carswell

        Well-stated. You stole my comment.

        It has happened to more than one winery, where their corks were fine, but TCA contamination still got into the "mix." This has happened on several "shores." Also, many can mistake somre earthy aromas, for TCA contamination. Especially in some reds, it can be a close call.

        Good reply,


      2. This is extremely common in Spanish wines, cheap or expensive. I've always figured it has more to do with the aging process than the bottling. Call it oxidized if you're worried about convincing the staff at the store.

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          1. Thank you!
            I'm a first timer in the wine post. Very helpful!