September 6, 2022
Wine capsules are the protective sleeves that sit on the neck of a bottle of wine, over the cork. Their main role is to prevent rodents or insects from damaging the cork when the wine is stored for long periods of time. They decorate the bottle and can also be used as a collar to catch drips when pouring wine. Some have information on them such as the name, logo or motto of the winery.
Until the early 1990s, lead was often used to make the capsules. However, this practice was gradually abandoned, partly because of concerns that traces of lead residue might be transferred to the wine during pouring. Today, capsules are generally made of tin, heat-shrink plastic, PVC, aluminum or wax.
Some wineries choose not to use capsules, such as Martellotto Wine Productions' Pinot Grigio. This is because this wine is intended to be enjoyed within two years of bottling. It is therefore not necessary to protect the cork.
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Source: california wine club