Is this wine corked? How can I tell? And can I drink it anyway?

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When we hear a bottle of wine is “corked”, many of us expect to see pieces of cork floating in the glass and perhaps a crumbling, rotting cork falling off the corkscrew. The truth is you can’t always tell by looking at an opened bottle of wine if a poor cork has tainted the wine’s flavours and aromas. Things might look impeccable, and yet the wine just tastes odd. If the cork looks fine, then you might just put those earthy, musty flavours down to being from a kind of wine you don’t like. Ernst Büscher from the German Wine Institute (DWI) says you shouldn’t be looking for cork problems, but sm…

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