When I was asked to shoot a “wine re-corking” clinic, I had no idea just how fascinating it would be. If I had any expectations of the event at all, I thought it might just be matter of taking bottles of wine and opening them up and replacing the corks in some sort of production line type of work. It wasn’t.
Penfolds brings in their top wine makers to asses the health of bottles of wines at least 15 years old, and whether they need to be opened. If the decision to open them is made, there’s a bit of risk that the bottle could be spoiled. The wine is tested by the wine makers themselves and either given an official certification so they can be kept longer or sold at auction, or… well… worse news. The owner also gets the chance to taste the wine before they actually drink it. Then they’re re-corked and packaged up as good as new, with a certification sticker pasted on the back.
There were some very rare and expensive bottles that came in, and a few moments of suspense waiting for the final verdict on the wine and a few “un-certified” bottles that were drank on the spot. All that, combined with the amazing light in the St Regis hotel’s ball room, made this an awesome day for shooting.