Christmas dinner this year was at my youngest brother’s house. He and his wife appreciate a good bottle of wine (almost) as much as I do, so I’d grabbed a bottle from my house to take downstate with me. I didn’t inspect it closely before choosing it, but I knew that it was one of the bottles that my local wine shop had recommended some time ago.
Fast forward to Christmas afternoon, shortly before dinner…
My sis-in-law went to open the bottle of wine. The foil cutter wasn’t working, but she said that it was getting dull and needed new blades, so she’d let my brother work on it. He came upstairs and attempted the cutter, again without success.
He decided that the fancy cork puller would be able to grab the cork just fine and pull it despite the foil, so he tried that. First try…no cork. Second try…no cork. Third try…STILL no cork. The worm just wasn’t catching in the cork at all. He moved to an older style opener but still had no luck at all.
We all looked at the top of the bottle and decided that the cork must be defective, as what the worm kept pulling up looked like little bits of fluff, maybe desiccated cork or even just thick foil. A shame, really, but my brother pulled down another bottle of wine and opened it. No big loss.
But he was curious, so he decided to do a “bottle-topsy” and try to figure out what really had gone wrong with the first bottle. After several minutes’ work with a fork on the foil, he started laughing. So did SIL and I.
It was a screw-top bottle. And the wine turned out to be very good after all of that.