Q: I was storing some wine in a closet at my mom's house and she had her house tented and fumigated for termites. Is my wine ruined and/or safe to drink? -- Eric Burger
A: Dr. Andrew Waterhouse, professor of enology at U.C. Davis, responds:
"The wine is perfectly safe. Traditional corks and all closures are very good barriers. For example, flavors stay in the bottle for year after year. That tells you how impervious the cork is to medium-sized molecules, like flavor molecules, or fumigation molecules. We do know that corks let in oxygen, which is a very small molecule, at a slow rate. The larger molecules don't get through. Especially considering that the fumigation exposure is very brief, that is hardly enough time for anything to slip past the cork."
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