Tuesday, September 16, 2008

How to Keep Corks Happy Once Screwcaps Rule the Earth

The most commonly asked questions in my wine shop don't involve wine. They don't involve the parking rules for the spots outside the store. They don't even involve directions to the World Trade Center (although that topic comes close.)

Surprisingly, the most commonly asked questions in my shop involve corks.

Actually, it's not so surprising, because the back wall of my store is covered almost entirely in corks. Lots and lots of corks. And if you think it looks cool in the picture, it looks even cooler in person.

People are drawn to it, literally - drawn right behind the counter to where they can touch it. (This is a problem, because the staircase to the basement is right there as well, and if they don't look where they're going, they'll be drawn right into a big hole.)

Children are especially fascinated by these corks. A few (including mine) have written their initials on a specific cork and come to visit it from time to time.

Top 9 Cork Wall Questions Heard at Frankly Wines
  1. Q: Are those corks. A: Yes
  2. Q: Have you drunk all those bottles? A: No.
  3. Q: So where did they come from? A: eBay. Yes, you really can buy anything on eBay.
  4. Q: How many are there? A: About 15,000. That's one bottle a day for 40 years. That's why I bought them on eBay. Even wine industry people don't drink that much and I wanted the wall to be done before my lease was up. I thought it would take about 5,000 corks, max. I was a little off.
  5. Q: Are they just sitting there? A: No, they're glued. With plain old Elmer's glue
  6. Q: How long did that take? A: About 30 hours. But it would have only taken 20 hours if we hadn't needed cut and piece together corks covering the fuse box.
  7. Q: Did you do that all yourself? A: No, my father did. Nothing beats free family labor!
  8. Q: Did you come up with that idea? A: No, my architect did. Carlos Rodriquez at Rodriguez Studio. Can't recommend him enough. We needed a cool way to hide the fuse box and he came up with this masterpiece! Check out some more arty pictures of the corks on his site.
  9. Q: Why didn't you put your logo into the wall using different colored corks? A: I wanted to preserve just a little bit of my father's sanity. After all, there are other projects I need him to work on!

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