uncorking a wine bottle

What the Cork is This?

It’s guest blogger time! Our Wine Guides are the ultimate educators, entertainers, and wine lovers. Their enthusiasm for what they do is ever-present and they’re always finding extra special ways to share their passion for wine with the world. One of those wonderful wine lovers is Wine Guide Ashley Robles of Houston, Texas, who runs her own blog called Chocolate Sasquatch, which is all about being a working mom of two, wife, and wine lover! We’re sharing one of her posts today as a guest blogger. Ashley answers the burning question, “What do you do with the cork at a restaurant?”

So you’re in a nice restaurant … ya know … Olive Garden.

And you tell the server, “Uh yes, I’d like to buy a bottle of your house Pinot Noir,” because you’re feeling fancy.
The server comes out with the bottle, opens it, and gives you the cork. You accept the cork and look back at the server and just smile thinking to yourself … “this will go nice in my cork collection at home.”

What else are you supposed to do with a stupid cork? ​

Well, I’ll tell you…
Look at it.
Don’t smell it.

Often, when you purchase a bottle of wine at a restaurant—or sometimes even just when you’ve requested a pour from a certain bottle—the server will present the wine, uncork it, and hand the cork over to you. Sometimes they may just place it on the table. But, why?

Back in the day, wine labels deteriorated more easily, so checking the cork of a wine was a great way to make sure that the wine presented was in fact the wine you requested. Nowadays, we don’t have that issue. You can easily just check the label as the server presents the wine to you before opening it. Sometimes, they’re in a hurry and don’t grab the right bottle. This is your time to double check.

The main info a cork offers you is whether or not the wine was properly stored. You want the cork to be nice and moist which ensures the wine was stored on its side. Wines that are sealed with cork need to be stored on their side to seal out air. When this is done, the cork stays nicely saturated until it’s opened.

Beyond that, the judgement of value and greatness comes from the delicious fermented grape juice that gets poured into your glass: the wine. That’s where you’ll check the color, body or leg, smell, and taste of the wine!

You can give the cork back to the server, now.

You don’t have to be a wine snob to know a few good things about wine! Now that you know the great secret of the cork, you can share it with your friends and family next time you’re out.

About Ashley Robles

Houston Wine Guide Ashley Robles

I’m a working mama bear from Houston, Texas, and married to my best friend. I’m passionate about writing, wine, and music. Being a Wine Guide has helped me mesh the three together into some fun opportunities. Both my husband and I love trying new wines together! There’s something about sharing a bottle of wine with friends and family that makes the laughs harder, the time slower, and the memories greater.

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