Bark of the cork oak tree, and the substance traditionally used to stopper wine bottles.

Natural cork stoppers have excellent qualities of elasticity, keeping the wine in the bottle while not allowing air to intrude. It is only quite recently that synthetic substitutes have been developed to try to combat the problem of corked wine.

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Taste over 80 fine Italian wines at Decanter’s Grandi Marchi tasting on 9 October 2019 – book tickets today