Ask Sid: More rubber smell in wines?

January 24th, 2018
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why does my wine smell like rubber

Question: I have heard participants in the various tasting groups in which I belong refer to “baby rubber bumpers” aromas in older Meursault. Have you ever heard this description before?

Answer: Yes I have smelled “rubber” in many wines over the years. Usually cheaper badly made ones or wines with an overly reductive winemaking issue. However it is sometimes also noticed when combined with the petrol/marmalade notes of Riesling and Northern Rhone Syrah earthy blackberries. Most pronounced is “burnt tires rubber” a mercaptan fault from volatile sulphur I have found from riper grapes including Southern Rhone blends & Pinotage from South Africa. Haven’t seen it specifically from older Meursault (which I drink frequently) but there can be some of that when pre-mox shows up. Decanting or adding a pure old copper penny to the wine may help eliminate this rubber smell.


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January 24th, 2018

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