Skip to main content

The Globe and Mail

If there’s cork in my glass, should I send the wine back?

The Question

A restaurant served me wine with pieces of cork in the glass. Should I have sent it back?

The Answer

Story continues below advertisement

It depends on your tolerance. I'm the sort who would ask for a spoon to remove the pieces myself.

Small cork particles won't cause harm or yield an off taste, though I'm not a fan of stray bark in my beverage. This is not a case of "corked" wine, by the way, which refers to an odorous taint produced by mould that has combined with chlorine during the cork-production process. Mere cork particles, on the other hand, are purely a physical and aesthetic nuisance.

It's common for dried-out corks to leave behind a few stray remnants when the bottle's opened without sufficient care. They float, so it's easy to scoop them out with a spoon. No big deal.

Most fine restaurants, when politely alerted to the unsightly problem, will replace your glass (assuming you've ordered by the glass). If you've ordered a whole bottle, they may remove the particles (by slowly pouring them into a glass and using the spoon technique) or replace the bottle with a fresh one.

E-mail your wine and spirits questions to Beppi Crosariol. Look for answers to select questions to appear in the Wine & Spirits newsletter and on The Globe and Mail website.

Report an error Licensing Options
About the Author
Life columnist

Beppi Crosariol writes about wine and spirits in the Globe Life and Style sections.He has been The Globe's wine and spirits columnist for more than 10 years. In the late 1990s, he also wrote a food trends column called The Biting Edge.Beppi used to cover business law for ROB and previously edited the paper's weekly technology section. More


The Globe invites you to share your views. Please stay on topic and be respectful to everyone. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

Please note that our commenting partner Civil Comments is closing down. As such we will be implementing a new commenting partner in the coming weeks. As of December 20th, 2017 we will be shutting down commenting on all article pages across our site while we do the maintenance and updates. We understand that commenting is important to our audience and hope to have a technical solution in place January 2018.

Discussion loading… ✨