Thursday, February 03, 2005

Dunno how I missed these...

Seems there's been some blowback versus the Stelvin screwcap, mainly because it seems to be somewhat fragile and prone to leakage and/or oxidation when damaged. Here's a long article that articulates some of the problems.

Seems innovation's breaking out all over as regards how to bury the humble cork!

VinTegraFirst, the VinTegra closure (Vino-Lok outside the U.S.) is a new cork alternative that Alcoa's just begun production on. It uses a similar sealing mechanism to the Stelvin closure I mentioned in my previous post, but wrapped around a glass stopper analogous to a decanter plug. It's elegant looking, and offers the benefits of a screwcap without the image problem. It does require a new type of bottle, though (as does the Stelvin).

It looks as though there's even going to be a three-level VinTegra product line, with the glass model for the high end, a Stelvin clone for the middle, and a truly ghastly-looking small screwcap for the low end.

ZorkThen there's the Zork (Wasn't that an Infocom game?). The Zork tries to capture the seal of a screwcap while retaining the "pop" of a cork-style stopper, and by some indications it may be succeeding. It's a funky-looking plastic affair about the size of a champagne cork assembly, with a zip-band that must be torn off before yanking out the synthetic stopper, so attaining the pop in question.

The Zork seems fairly new (in any event, I've never seen one), but the Zork website says it's been in development since 1999. I'm not sure it's dignified enough for use with a hifalutin' French red, but for any edgy or trendy label it ought to do wonderfully. Especially if it works as advertised. It will even work with standard still-wine bottles!

VinTegra articles:
PDF Brochure from Alcoa
Alcoa Product Page
Packaging World
German Alcoa site about the Vino-Lok
Alcoa Italy

Zork articles:
Penny's Hill "Red Dot" Shiraz, featuring a Zork closure (PDF)
"Open and Close Argument," an article from the Adelaide Review
All Hail the Zork from TVNZ


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