A Hoarder or an Artist?

Corks can be everywhere for a wine lover. The wonderful sound they make when they pop out of a bottle just perfectly and the wine is at its peak. Sometimes they can be the devil incarnate, it seems, when they refuse to come out of the bottle the way they should. Sometimes they crumble, sometimes they break in half and sometimes they just have to be pushed into the bottle and then the wine has to be strained before serving. I have a collection of assorted cork screws and apparatuses to help get a cork out of the bottle, some work great and some I just kind of shake my head at. This entire introduction and I am not going to go into a diatribe as to whether there should or shouldn’t be corks for sealing a bottle.

Corks for Trivet

I have been saving corks, just like I have been saving wine labels for years. For a long time I just saved the labels instead of mounting them in my wine scrap books for reference. They all ended up as “wall paper” inside of my wine cellar and the funny thing is, most of them you cannot see, until you remove a bottle of wine from the rack, but I enjoyed that labor of love. Now I can resume my wine scrap book, but I decided the other day to go and gather up all the corks that have been hiding throughout my house.

I am going to get creative again, and just like the wine labels, the corks are now going to become a decoration in the wine cellar. I am going to use them as a type of crown molding, and I have been thinking about this labor of future love for some time and the time is getting near.

Heart of Corks

I spent an afternoon opening up cookie tins, coffee can, popcorn tins and even those cute cork canisters that my Bride has bought to be decorative. I sorted and sorted and sorted corks. I now have one big bucket that has just plain corks with no decorations on them. Then there are two big buckets that have corks with designs and wordings on them. I also filled another bucket with sparkling wine corks, and I am still thinking of how they will fit into the grand scheme.

Accumulation of Corks

All the while I was also tossing some corks into a special bucket. These were special corks. Like a Chateau Latour or a Colgin. There are several assorted Opus One corks, because they even have the vintage stamped onto the cork. The Domaine de la Romanee-Conti has a special design. All the while I am lamenting about all the corks that crumbled that were special like all the First Growth Medoc wines from 1961. Why you may ask did I make a special grouping of these corks? Several years ago, one of my Bride’s cousins bought me a special Christmas present, it was a trivet or a hot plate where the main part is corks that you supply, fit into the box like a jigsaw puzzle. I will finally get that gift out of one of the bookcases in the library and actually finish that gift. When it is done, it will be either a trivet or it can be hung on the wall and be a corkboard note collector. So yes I was a hoarder for years and now I am getting ready to be an artist again. Down the road there will be pictures; and I know that you are all excited.

About thewineraconteur

A non-technical wine writer, who enjoys the moment with the wine, as much as the wine. Twitter.com/WineRaconteur Instagram/thewineraconteur Facebook/ The Wine Raconteur
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10 Responses to A Hoarder or an Artist?

  1. My mom and I bought old cabinet doors with raised edges at our local home building supply recycle store, and then organized corks in the middle section of the cabinet door to make a cork board. We inserted a few little hangers on the bottom for keys and such. It turned out really well. Can’t wait to see your project!

    • Thank you for stopping by and for your comment. I like your idea and will mention it to my Bride. I do believe that there is a life for corks after the bottle has been opened. – John

  2. In a wine store in Chicago i saw a bench where top was made of corks. Was thinking of trying that… Went back recently to take a picture but the shop closed. Will have to wing it!

    • John, thanks for stopping by. I think that if you Google Images for cork furniture you may find some ideas. I have seen different cork pieces over the years on Facebook postings. – John

  3. Love this story, John. Look forward to seeing your cork creations. I especially relate to the ‘hoarder or artist’ question. My garage full of future projects has raised a few eyebrows.

  4. Artist, no question, and I look forward to seeing your creations. I have a few of my own cork projects, including mundane purposes such as plate stands inside cabinets so they don’t slide around.

  5. frankstero says:

    A lady I met at a big dinner event was collecting corks with her boyfriend so that they could eventually cover an armchair! My friends at Ely Wine Bar here in Dublin donated several boxes to give them a head start.

    • Frank, I am sure that would be a great start for them. I have seen photos on Social Media of cork covered easy chairs. I have also been to restaurants that have had swirling mosaic designs on the walls all done in cork.

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