Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Cayuse Bombshell!

Lest you think that Epona Wines are the only ones that have to deal with quality problems from time to time, check out this bombshell from Cayuse, my favorite winery in the entire state of WA: They are pouring out most of their 2015 wines, including the flagship Bionic Frog, the Widowmaker, the Camaspelo and Impulsivo, and many others, due to bad corks. Customers will receive refunds, and Cayuse will make a claim against the cork company. 

This is awful news, a major hit to an industry--those wines have already scored in the high 90s, before bottling. Some cork manufacturer's reputation will take a major (perhaps fatal) hit from this. And Cayuse's reputation will also take a major hit, so I expect them to make a huge claim against the cork company, which could result in litigation.

Awful news. Over the years I've built up a position as a fairly large Cayuse buyer (in the scheme of things--Cayuse starts you out at only one three-pack of wines, and that can grow slowly over time if you stay in the club). 

​We winemakers do our best to maintain quality at every step. The list of times/places where a wine flaw can appear is very long--liiterally thousands of opportunities for a wine to "go wrong," between harvest and the time you pull the cork out. I feel for Christophe Baron and all winemakers today.

FWIW, I use Diem corks, which are processed with superheated steam to drive out the chemical precursors that can cause TCA, or cork taint. They are more expensive, but worth it. I believe in them. So far ;)


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