Sunday, March 18, 2007

Pop a Cork....Snap a Cap!!

It has been an embarrassing couple of weeks without any posts. My computer was crushed like a grape or rather my hard drive crashed. I had to open a lot of bottles of wine to cope and they included wines with screw-cap closures. My journey to accepting screw-caps began about 4 years ago while attending a lecture at a Society of Wine Educators conference in California. The sound of a cork popped out of a bottle has always appealed to me. Over the years I have learned to listen to and enjoy different styles of music, so I reasoned why not let the snappy crack of screw-cap be added to my list of pleasant sounds. So lets get with the times folks and accept the fact that screw-caps are here to stay and for good reasons.
After all, how many of us when served a glass of wine, can really tell whether it was poured from a cork stoppered bottle or one closed with a screw-cap?
(GlobalCap closure picture courtesy of Guala Closures North America)
A recent survey by AC Nielson as reported in Wine Business Monthly, found that there was a significant
increase in acceptance and usage of screw-cap closures in North America. Britain's leading wine merchant, Berry Brothers have just switched to Stelvin closures for its house French reds and white.
But perhaps more telling and certainly a bold move, was the recent announcement by Maison Jean-Claude Boisset to launch their 2005 vintage Chambertin Grand Cru and their Beaune Premier Cru Les Bressandes with the screw-cap closure. Boisset will be using the Stelvin Lux+, the latest generation of screw-caps, which ensures a slight oxygenation of the wine through their high-performance seals. Another argument lost by traditionalists who claim only cork will allow this micro-oxygenation. This is a bold and innovative move in the Cote d'Or, as it will be the first time a grand cru wine will be closed with a screwcap.
"This pioneering spirit has always been a strong family trait," explains Jean-Charles Boisset. "We respect tradition, but at the same time, we try to encourage people to consider a new approach if the means are there to improve upon a wine's quality." Boisset has been a front runner in Burgundy for some time. The launch of their French Rabbit (scroll down to my June 5th, 2006 entry) was another example of their leadership on the Burgundian scene. I'm convinced. Screw-caps are in. It will be interesting to see what Maison Boisset will come up with next.

1 comment:

David said...

I went to a tasting about a year ago devoted to convincing people that you can now get a good wine with a screw cap, so I've overcome my initial skepticism. And a serious Burgundy producer going in this direction further legitimizes it!