A friend of mine had me open his bottle of 1982 Opus One. He had it sitting in his living room wine rack for years.
Before opening it, I noticed that the wine level was well below the capsule. I suspected leakage, but the color of the top of the cork was good.
When I inserted the corkscrew, it seemed that cork was very soft, in fact, it offered no resistance.
I expected difficulty removing the cork, but it popped right out or should I say about the top-half did. The cork was well saturated with wine up to about one quarter of an inch from the top. So there was no apparent leakage.
After a couple of attempts, the rest of the cork came out.
I poured some in our glasses. The color was good. There was a nice smokey aroma, but there was absolutely no fruit aroma.
I tears were actually welling up in my eyes at this point. OK, not really but I figured that it was gone.
It tasted pretty much like it smelled. The fruit was long gone. There was alcohol and the flavors from the barrel. I could tell that it was once a great wine. I even drank a bit of it before giving up.
I give thanks to my friend for allowing me to share the experience, because even though the wine was well past it’s prime, I know that it cost a lot when it was purchased.