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Reply to "how do those synthetic corks fair compared to real cork?"

As mentioned above the gist of synthetic corks is that it does not provide a sufficient barrier from oxygen suitable for long term storage. The problem with screw caps is that the barrier from oxygen is is too good and thus does not allow the wine to age well. Furthermore with the screwcap type closures, some wineries experienced a compromised seal when cases of newly made wine were stacked too high. The weight of the wines above a given case of wine would push down on the metal cap seal and butterfly the edges of the cap outward which essentially broke the seal. This hasn't been as much of a problem in recent times now that wineries know this but it becomes a storage problem for larger producers.

Having said that, there is a reason beyond the perception of quality why so many wine makers still use natural cork. Synthetic enclosures may one day be good enough to replace natural cork, but thus far natural cork is still the way to go.
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