Thursday, November 12, 2009

It's All in the Glass

Earlier this year, ZinfanHubby, ZinfanSis & I trekked up north to Oregon to visit my lovely Gram & Grandpa. Ashland, Oregon really is a cute little town, most known for its annual Shakespeare Festival. Though they are wonderful, warm hosts who love having their grandkids visit, Gram & Grandpa don't have much energy for getting out and about, and the three of us spent quite a bit of time exploring the little town while they relaxed at home.

In search of a refreshment, we happened across Liquid Assets. Denise, the owner, was happy to recommend some snacks, suggest some wine flights and a non-alcoholic drink for underage ZinfanSis. We were delighted with their small but solid selection of bottles; it's been awhile, but I know they had a Biale or two (!!!) for sale. We walked away with a bottle of Resonance Vineyard Pinot Noir, a biodynamic Oregonian wine. When in Rome & all that...

Imagine our surprise when we got the wine back to my grandparents' house, removed the capsule and see... glass? No, not the bottle (c'mon, ZinfanGirl isn't that dense), but where the cork should be there was glass instead. What in the...?!?!

The next day we returned to Liquid Assets, and Denise explained the story behind the corkless cork. Resonance winery prides itself on being sustainable and biodynamic, and eschew corks (and the harvesting of cork trees) in favor of glass. Hm, makes sense. Denise continued to tell us that the glass "cork" could also be used as a stopper on other bottles. Sustainable indeed!

ZinfanHubby & I always nab Pinot Noirs for Thanksgiving. We instantly thought of Resonance and their cool glass stopper. Alas, The Resonance Pinot Noir is all but sold out, but another Oregon winery, Sineann, makes a well-reviewed Pinot from Resonance vineyard grapes. Sineann is also corkless, and explains a bit behind their cork-free wines on their site. Sineann's site claims that glass stoppers do not compromise the taste or quality of the wine; in fact, it touts glass stoppers as being superior to cork in terms of fruit preservation and consistency among bottle quality. ZinfanGirl appreciates this, but mostly likes the glass stoppers because they look frickin' cool.

After a bit of research, ZinfanGirl can tell you that Resonance wines, and possibly Sineann as well, use the "Vino-Seal" glass stopper by Alcoa (check out an interesting article about wineries using Alcoa's corkless stopper here). I have heard much debate over real cork vs. synthetic cork vs. screw-cap, but not much talk about glass. Why not? Granted I don't know much about the scientific aspects of each which would obviously determine which is the "best" sealing method, but... didn't I mention that the glass stoppers are frickin' cool?!

ZinfanReaders, I'd love to hear your thoughts on glass stoppers. Experiences, opinions, theories, stories... send 'em my way.

Zinfully yours,


  1. Glass cork that doubles as a stopper? Sounds awesome! But how does it seal, and prevent oxygen from coming in?

  2. The Gernot Heinrich Winery from Austria uses glass stoppers in his Zweigelt. We really enjoy this wine. I wonder how it would taste with natural cork?

  3. It has a small rubber-y seal around the glass stopper. Probably isn't as airtight as a cork, but it's damn cool!

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