When I travel with wine, I prefer bottles with twist-off seals. That shouldn't come as a surprise to any regular readers of this blog or my magazine column. I'm convinced of the validity of twisties, and hauling around a case of them gives me a chance to test my own belief.
I recently spent a week on the Pacific on a fishing boat half-way down the Baja California coast, and the captain and the owners of the Sojourn, out of San Diego, all but encouraged anglers to BYOW, since that was one item they didn't stock (the meals, by the way, were excellent). New Zealand wines, because almost all are twist-offs, are my favorites, but as you know, more and more wineries from everywhere are getting the message. It's OK to eschew cork in favor of a more reliable and easy-to-use closure. No point in risking a faulty cork when you're many briny miles from land.
Many of those aboard also brought wine for dinner and, naturally, the topic of my wines came up. Several anglers were curious about screw caps—a term I avoid—and during the course of dinner we shared bottles. Sadly, a couple of the wines my companions brought were corked, or otherwise spoiled. Mine all showed perfectly, as expected, a pleasing mix of young California and Kiwi Sauvignon Blancs, Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs. A nicely aged Australian Riesling was dry and flinty.
At points I convinced those wine drinkers of the validity and ease of use of twist-offs. Whether they will use that knowledge the next time they're shopping for wine I'll never know. Advocating twisties is a bit like being a door-to-door salesman. At each stop you have to make your pitch. But I do know the ranks of vintners from everywhere using twisties has grown by leaps and bounds.