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The dinner is wonderful, the atmosphere is magical, but the wine... undrinkable. How can we make if a wine is damaged or it just has a bad taste?
It has happened to many people to order a wine and while everything else in the meal “ties up” wonderfully with each other, the wine destroys everything. Most, however, can not really make if it's a spoiled wine or a wine with a bad taste.
The following instructions will help you make sure that it's damaged, in order for you to be able to give it back without dreading looking “irrelevant”.
Appearance: Looks carefully
Clarity: The wine must be clean and clear. If it's blurry, it is very likely due to bacteria. There is of course the case of sediment – which is normal - and is not an indication for the wine' s quality. If the wine is blurry though, you should return it.
Color: The wine' s color reflects the maturation period. Oxidized wine, which is the exposed to air for a long period of time, has brown-red hues and brownish-orange if it is white, while it usually is tasteless.
Cork: If you find out that the cork is cracked, or wine has gone through, then chances are that the content is spoiled.
Tip: You might sometimes notice some clean crystals that look like sugar in the bottle or the glass containing the wine. These are harvesting salts, which are created when the wine has been stored in very high temperatures. These particles are nothing to worry about and you can drink without fear, while it is considered they exist when the bottle is of good quality.
Smell: Carefully smell it
Besides the bottles and cork' s smell, check 3 more points that might indicate a sour wine.
Musty smell: In this case it smells like stale mushrooms or wet soil. This smell is caused by Trichloroanisole (TCA) in a sour wine and can be even worse after its contact with air.
Vinegar or Sherry smell: It is an indication of high level volatile acidity and oxidation.
Smell of bad egg: It is cause by excessive amount of hydrogen sulfide, which is created during the fermentation process. The smell might be unpleasant, but the wine is drinkable, while there is a traditional recipe for dealing with this phenomenon: put a bronze coin in the wine, to “draw” all the odors.
Tip: Wine often smell like burnt match once it is opened. This scent comes from the sulfur dioxide, which is added in the bottling process in order to keep the wine fresh. There is no reason to worry, nor to return the wine, once the smell will be gone within a few minutes.
Taste: Take a sip
Tainted wine, has a vinegar or sherry taste. A sip will help you understand if this wine bust be returned.
Tip: Smell and taste will never leave a doubt about the wine' s quality and don't forget that according to experts, 1 in 30 bottles of wine in the past 10 years, are deemed damaged, while there are re many who believe that the analogy goes up to 1 in 10 bottles. That's why, if you have the slightest suspicion, give it back.