Corked. I can’t tell you how common this is in BC. Oh wait, I can, I kept a record in 2017. Twice from bottles purchased at private stores and six times from bottles purchased at BC Liquor. Not including this. Seven times from BC Liquor. What a year 2017 was.
In BC, when you have a corked bottle you can return it and complain. You must have your receipt. You must take the bottle back. It’s an enormous hassle because I rarely keep the receipt (I mean really? Who does nowadays?) and often the bottle is opened up somewhere not at home, this most recent bottle on the Gulf Islands, it’s exacerbated by the lie down factor—you want to lie something down, then really it becomes your responsibility not the seller if you open it in six months or more. There was no way I could re-cork this bottle and get it back to Vancouver. It graced the septic.
Gismondi recommended the 14 as a cellar pick but the 13 was languishing on the shelves and I picked this up in error. So in theory many buyers are lying down what could be corked wine.
I have complained in the past but it’s tiresome and if you complain you are often belittled, you are led to believe it’s the consumer’s problem. In my experience, BC Liquor takes no responsibility (just our after tax money, in spades). They claim all their wine is transported in temperature controlled transport and stored in a temperature controlled environment. Private wine store staff have told me there are some vagaries to this routine including containers that aren’t ventilated but I’m not part of the industry and have no way to know unequivocally. Is there a PETA-esque wine group that could get footage of the storage?
But regardless of how wine is transported, how it’s displayed is testament to an overt attitude of laissez-faire. If you visit a local BC Liquor store you might be surprised at what you’ll see. Many have direct sunlight poring in onto the wine shelves. Indiscriminately. There’s Wolf Blass; hope he’s wearing SPF 30. Most bottles are upright and a shocking amount are covered in dust; those with corks are just drying out. And the in store temperature, my God, not a shred of humidity in most stores, some are like saunas in the colder months and in BC most months are the colder months.
We’ve never posted on corked wine. I feel it comes with the territory. Suck it up. However, the problem seems to be getting worse not better. It’s disappointing, a hassle, costly, and I believe largely preventable. There is no passenger bill of rights for wine buyers. Pity.
Price: What? Before or after it went down the drain?
Market Liquidity: Heaven’s Gate and Ishtar rolled up into one.