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Published:  23 July, 2008

By Jack Hibberd

Producers in South Australia's McLaren Vale region have backed the recently launched Zork closure by offering a new range of Grenache-based wines sealed under Zork. Eleven wineries have backed the initiative, named Cadenzia (including d'Arenberg, Kangarilla Road and Dog Ridge) which stipulates only that the wines must use Grenache as the main component of the blend, be bottled under Zork and have Cadenzia' somewhere on the label. Producers hope the project will have a similar impact to the Clare Valley Screwcap Initiative which raised the profile of both the closure and the main grape variety involved - Riesling. Cadenzia is the brainchild of Adelaide-based wine writer Philip White. Screwcap is an imperfect closure. It is a vast improvement on cork, but I still see a lot of bottle variation; they are fragile, and they leak,' said White. According to John Brooks, technical director of Zork, around 500,000 bottles have so far been bottled under the closure, with high-volume production and automatic applicators available from next month. It's clients that export to the US who seem to like it most,' said Brooks, The US market is desperately looking for an alternative to screwcap. We hope to seal around 10 million bottles this year.' Recent tests have shown Zork performs similarly to screwcap with the exception of free and total sulphur levels, which drop faster under Zork than screwcap, due to a slow release of oxygen from the hollow stopper. Western Wines' brand Zonte's Footstep is hoping to get the first Zork-closed bottle on UK shelves later this year.