You're are right, I think it is an aggregate cork. That makes it worth drinking, not keeping.
TC, as long as the wine has not seeped to the top of the cork you are fine. the cork should be wet. If it was bad, you would know right away. Screw tops seal better overall but no worries.
Cote's are great wines. many can be found for a reasonable price and are solid values. Enjoy.
TC, so long as the cork isn't pulled down or expanded up it is probably fine. Drink it, if you get sick it was bad.
Another wine recommendation from what you showed. This one has no class is cheap and one of our favorites. Trader Joe's version of a Beaujolais. We normally buy a case of this a year, this one is an 09 have no idea how it survived so long (must fix this problem). Drink it young for best taste.
This is 3 Buck Chuck so cheaper than soda :-). Drink it room temp or chilled, carafe it if you are embarrassed by it. You will probably be complimented on it, and bet you a bottle you enjoy it. They only offer in around Thanksgiving.
If I had a restaurant it would be the house red. It is just fun.
I prefer to call it "Affordable" wine.
Thanks for the suggestion.
The Raley's market near us has a 30% off deal if you buy 6 bottles or more. Quite often we can get pretty nice wine for 7.00/bottle if we shop right.
For the summer, I was keeping a few bottles of Naked Grape Pinot Grigio on hand with an average cost of 3.99/bottle when bought at the right time. (usually priced around 7.00/bottle)
I'm one of those people who can open a bottle of wine and have a glass(or two) in the evening and finish it over the next few days. Sometimes I find the wine to be better on the second day, much like the Malbec I just had, and the Tempranillo that I tend to buy. This wine has a screw cap and is handy for a glass by the lake.
I'm a lightweight when it comes to drinking and tend to shut the computer off after I begin my second glass........just to be safe.
Affordable is great. There are plenty of interesting, authentic wines that are affordable (say, under $12.00) and reveal some of the glories of culture and agriculture and history and geography and climate and soil and farmers' personality quirks. The Cotes du Rhone that you posted earlier, TC, is a great example of this. Good going on that. BUT, <wine soapbox>many of the "wines" out there that are lauded for being "amazing values" may be fine as "beverages," in the same way that we like every bottle of Snapple to taste just like the last one. However, in the context of the touch points I list above, which make wine interesting to people who love it, these liquids are not properly wine.</wine soapbox>
Wine, clothes, skis, cars, art, and lots of other stuff; go with what you enjoy. (With beer, enjoy what someone else is buying.)
Do not claim to be a wine connoisseur in any way shape of form. Have done a few wine tours and a winter in Les a mie De Vin (forgive the spelling). If you are up in the Okanogan by Penticton go try out the ice wines along The Golden Mile. There are many things to love about wine and they should all be for your own reasons.
Charles Shaw today is not a notable vintner. They do make decent wines from quality grapes out of some very good vineyards. Over the years they have flat out won at some very distinguished tastings. It really is not a wine to add to a collection, to impress people with. It is great for enjoying with your rowdy friends though. There are wines made for many purposes.
I just watched a short, BBC I think, documentary called Creatures of the Cork Forest which had more to do with the cork oak "forest"ecosystem than cork production itself. It said that the initial downfall of corks was the rise in demand in the 80's so producers started to cut corners and lower quality and more incidents of corked wine happened. The cork forests are quite unique in that unlike most other agriculture, the forest ecosystem stays almost completely intact after the harvest of the cork bark, except for some naked trees. It requires no pesticides, fertilizers, irrigation and minimal management and as a result the underlying ecosystem is practically wild right down the food chain. It also is about the only commercial crop that grows well in its environment, stabilizes the soil and water in a dry region and the wild flora and fauna flourish, including many rare and at risk species.
It briefly touched on the industry itself and said that they saw the light and cleaned up their act with modern production methods and quality control. Well worth the watch if you can find it online.
Might change your mind on cork vs alternates.
edit: It can be found on a well known P2P sites, yarrr matey as the original BBC doc- BBC Natural World 2008 Cork Forest In A Bottle
edit, edit: also found in OK quality on vimeo - http://vimeo.com/71820470
I don't really want to put corks back in booze stoppers tho; I'd rather by far see alternate applications developed. Cork-based fabrics and mock-leathers are a step in that direction, for example.