Crying over spoiled wine

Thursday, April 3, 2008

I waited and waited, and had finally decided to open it; it was a bottle of wine older than me, a 1969 Madeira. I had purchased this wine when I hit the lottery for $2500 last year (I tend to hit at least once a year for that amount, so maybe I should stop playing once I hit for the year, Lord knows that I am probably not making a profit on it).

So while I had purchased this wine about nine months ago, and I had some great moments since, I decided to open it with a good buddy of mine. I had some great anticipation in opening this vintage, because I had previously fell in love with a 1964 Bual Broadbent Madeira.

Now the first thing to know is that there are different types of Madeira, and the tastes can be quite far different in their ranges. It's the same as with the many versions of port wines.

Now, the first sign that this wine would bring tears to my eyes, and I don't mean good tears, was that the cork totally disintegrated on opening the bottle. This is sometimes a bad sign in a young wine, but definitely a bad sign in a wine that's at least 38 years old.

As I tried several attempts to extract the bespoiled cork, I had to give in and just push it in, choosing to go for the second glass versus the first one. Well, it didn't matter what I tried, somewhere and sometime since that wine was bottled, the cork failed and it went bad. This also makes the argument for both twist caps, as well as plastic corks relevant.

The price of that bottle was $130 dollars, the cost of the tears, priceless!

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