Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

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recorking, a potentially hazardous exercise conducted by some top wine producers and some fine-wine traders. The aim is to prolong a wine’s potential longevity after extended bottle ageing may have weakened the cork. At one stage Ch lafite would send its maître de chai on recorking tours which doubled as public relations exercises but, having encountered too many bottles of doubtful provenance and poor condition, they have abandoned this practice. Today penfolds is the world’s most determined recorker, holding ‘clinics’ for those who own Penfolds wines of more than 15 years old. In the 23 years to 2014, Penfolds had certified 120,000 bottles, typically topped them up with wine of a similar age and quality before recorking with advice on when to drink them. The fine wine market became suspicious of recorking in any circumstances other than the most public in the late 1980s, as it potentially offers too much possibility for adulteration and fraud.