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Why is there so much prejudice against screw caps?

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Paul B

Posted 23 Dec '21 from United States with 420 ratings

A few years ago, I began a post about saving one's corks. This was inspired by a few failed corks from Haitian clairins.

Since then, I have seen quite a few reveiws that lowered the score simply for the rum having screw caps. For me, this is the utmost ultimate in rum snobbery!!!! And keep in mind that the first Foursquare ECS rums also had screw caps!!!!  So, I rest my case.

Yes, we all like the sound of a real cork as it opens up each rum bottle, and even the synthetic rum corks make a good sound. But screw caps are also cool because they never fall apart.

If one has ever had the horrible experience of trying to save a rotting real cork, then those will surely think twice about criticizing the very reliable screw caps that never rot.



From Germany with 396 ratings Replied 23 Dec '21

Screw caps are better in terms of evaporation and durability. But manufacturers want their products to appear higher quality. Unfortunately, we have no influence on that. In any case, it would be wrong to devalue the rum because of the screw cap. I would also prefer a screw cap because of shipping. A bottle with a dried out cork will leak, one with a screw cap will have no problems even after 40 years.

I had a few problems with corks:

Leakage during shipment -> Zacapa 30Broken cork cap during shipment -> Worthy Park 12 EstateBroken cork during opening -> El Dorado 1997 PMDried out cork, broken during opening -> Pampero Aniversario 1992

kudzey (PREMIUM)

From Poland with 38 ratings Replied 23 Dec '21

I also feel that screw caps are more practical and cause no problems. They never break, dry nor rot. It is also easier to reuse a bottle with screw caps - cork cam store odores from the previous spirits.

On the other hand, I can feel that these are less appealing visually. It's sometimes funny to see the needlessly large ornaments on the corks but I've never seen any ornamentation on the screw caps. Have you seen any?

Of course, there are cases when it is simply impossible to substitute a cork with a screw cap, like a big rum flagon.



From Canada with 31 ratings Replied 24 Dec '21

I remember being a bit miffed that the Angostura 7 year bottle was a twist off. But then I poured a perfect no drip drink and immediately changed my reaction. 

That being said, I still prefer a cork. There's something about the cork that is part of the experience for me. When I think twist off cap, I think drink mixing rums. With corks I think rums that should be drank neat. Of course this isn't always the case (Angostura, Barbancourt, etc) but that's the feel I get. 

That and I've never had a cork go bad on me. It seems some bottlers have tried to combat that as well using different materials for the cork that won't rot. So either way, the cork rotting experience should be happening less and less as time passes. 

Paul B

From United States with 420 ratings Replied 24 Dec '21

Those rotten Haiitien corks were a freaking nightmare and I am damn glad that I had a large collection of backup corks. I hope that no one else encounters this situation, but with more than 400 reviews submitted, I was eventually going to run into this kind of trouble.

The sound of the cork removed from a bottle makes a musical tone, based upon how much rum remains inside. Now this is Christmas and I may be asking a bit much, but if anyone wants to compose a Chritmas song from all of thiose different corks opening up bottles of rum, I will gladly appreciate it. That is too much effort for this puppy. My postings always inspire and this is the season to inspire again!



From Canada with 31 ratings Replied 24 Dec '21

That is a hilarious idea.

You are right though, the sound of the cork out of the bottle is a magical sound. probably why I enjoy them more than screw tops. 

Rene Rum (PREMIUM)

From Switzerland with 470 ratings Replied 24 Dec '21

Tonight in concert:

Paul B and the popping corks.

Please book early.

Wish everyone a Merry Christmas.

Paul B

From United States with 420 ratings Replied 25 Dec '21

Rene and Yohobro:

What  a very delightful way to greet Christmas for all of us!!!  You guys are absolutely wonderful!  


From Germany with 26 ratings Replied 26 Dec '21

I will slightly devaluate and i have devaluated rums  (like Millonario 15) for their screw caps. If i loose some of my bottles to cork i will loose them with dignity and style. For me it makes a huge difference. For some people it will appear as snobbish behaviour. But i honestly wont appreciate tetra pack filled rum closed with screwcaps and served in a plastic cup.


From Germany with 396 ratings Replied 27 Dec '21

Corks are for wine, they are not suitable for high proof spirits. Because... "Cork allows some oxygen in to encourage development of the wine in the bottle." And if the cork is not in contact with the liquid, then it dries out.

We don't want this development in high proof spirits. We know the plastic or glass caps from Rum Nation or SBS. That would be a possible compromise for me.

As we know the Navy sealed their flagons with wax, apparently they knew early on about the permeability of corks. At that time, there were probably no alternatives. But today we can use current knowledge, why not choose the best shelf life for expensive spirits?


From Germany with 26 ratings Replied 27 Dec '21

Corks are used for wine but not necessarily perfect for wine. If you own an expensive bottle of wine  you will have the same problem. You will fear that the cork probably will ruin it. I am open minded to new innovative solutions. But cheap screwcaps with plastic cover inside - please no.


From Germany with 396 ratings Replied 28 Dec '21

One more reason to devalue the cork.Wine is always in direct contact with the cork, which does not work for high-proof spirits.It's more of a design question. Voss water has a screw cap, but does not look cheap.Anyway, I would feel better when shipping bottles with screw caps. And Paul has already had a bottle leak in the car.

Paul B

From United States with 420 ratings Replied 28 Dec '21


That was way back in March when a bottle of Navy Bay rum leaked all over my front passenger seat. And it was a very cheap plastic screw cap that came undone. I never bought that bargain Jamaican rum again.

So far, the best caps that I have found for rum are the ones made from synthetic cork. I have never had one of those leak or cause problems.


From Germany with 396 ratings Replied 31 Dec '21

Then I was wrong. Better a plastic cork instead of cheap screw cap :-)

Immiketoo (PREMIUM)

From Greece with 59 ratings Replied 20 Jan '22

I don't care how they close the bottle as long as the contents are tasty :)

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