Wine bottle synthetic closures: Performance and effect upon red wine aging & quality

Frederick Miller

Note: imported from RIT’s Digital Media Library running on DSpace to RIT Scholar Works. Physical copy available through RIT's The Wallace Library at: TP548.5.A6 M54 2000


A 1990 Columbia Valley Merlot varietal table wine produced at the Columbia Crest winery was filled and sealed with synthetic Cellukork, Tage and SupremeCorq brand cork finish closure alternatives as well as natural cork during a routine bottling operation and stored in neck-up and neck-down bottle orientations. The treatments were subjected to sensorial and analytical assessments after approximately five years bottle aging under controlled conditions. The physical performance characteristics of each closure type were also evaluated. Synthetic closures did not insulate the wine from normal oxidative processes relative to the time of assessment. Significant aroma and flavor differences were not evident between closures while differences in total sulfur dioxide content and color were. Color and total sulfur dioxide tended to decrease in a neck-up orientation regardless of closure type used. The Tage and Cellukork closures exhibited extremely high extraction forces as compared to natural cork.