Last night we opened what I knew was going to be a special wine, 2012 Nicolas Jones Napa Valley Syrah sealed under cork and then capped with wax. Adding a wax cap to any bottle of wine immediately adds a level of elegance to the presentation. But, even for the most experienced professional, removing the wax cap can be difficult.
I have found that the cutter on your wine opener also may not have the oomph to get through the wax. I usually opt for a pocket knife or a paring knife to make the careful cut along the top of the bottle (where you would usually remove the foil) to just remove the top of the wax. There is no need to remove all of the wax. That would require an unneeded amount of energy when you should be enjoying your wine.
As I removed the wax last night from my bottle of Syrah the cork underneath immediately began to crumble. You can imagine my distress, as the wine had a little bit of age, but certainly should still be fine. Seeing that the cork was just going to crumble, I knew it was easier to just push the cork through to the bottle, and get out a decanter and a few coffee filters. It required a double filter, but as I poured I smiled with enthusiasm as the wine smelled incredible. Earthy, woody herb and forest floor, with rich notes of wild cherry and spice. Excitedly I poured a glass and took a sip. The filtration actually helped open the concentrated wine up, revealing deep notes of blackberry, black cherry, toasted spice and meaty, savory balsamic. Cheers!