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Inspection Guidelines

Vinfolio follows rigorous inspection guidelines on all wine, ensuring the bottles you purchase are of the highest quality. The following quality standards are applied to all wines, whether Vinfolio inventory or peer-to-peer Marketplace sales: bottle fill level, label condition, cork condition, capsule condition, color.

Wine Store

All wines sold as Vinfolio Wine Store inventory are inspected prior to being listed for sale.


Wines sold through the Vinfolio Marketplace are inspected upon arrival at our warehouse. Completion of a Marketplace transaction is contingent upon the wine meeting our inspection standards.

Bottle Style Age Accepted If
Bordeaux Less than 15 years old Fill level is Base Neck (BN) or better.
Bordeaux More than 15 years old Fill level is Upper Shoulder (US) or better.
Burgundy Less than 15 years Fill level is 3 cm (1") from bottom of cork or capsule whatever is the lowest point.
Burgundy More than 15 years Fill is 5 cm (2") from cork or less.

Note: Since Burgundy-shaped bottles have a sloped shoulder, it is not practical to describe fill levels (ullage) of these wines in the same manners as those in a standard or Bordeaux bottle (e.g., Base Neck, Top Shoulder, Mid Shoulder, etc.). Therefore, the fill level should be reviewed in centimeters from the cork bottom.

Condition Rejected If Accepted If
Torn / Missing Part or all of vintage, producer, or vineyard is not legible or missing; nicks exceed ½  
Damp-stained Noticeably discolored or illegible (wine may not be bad but marketability is negatively affected) Slightly discolored from humidity (to be expected for wines that are older than 15 years)
Wine-stained Stain is more extensive (for marketability reasons) Stained only with small drops from the breakage of other bottles in a case
Scuffed Heavily scuffed and illegible  
Faded Noticeably faded and illegible  
Writing on Label Has significant writing (affects marketability)  
Fake Facsimile/photocopy or otherwise judged not to be authentic  
Condition Rejected If Accepted If
Protruding or Pushed Pushed through the capsule or is raised 2mm or more from the top of the bottle. Occurs when wine has been exposed to extreme temperature (either too hot or perhaps frozen). Raised less than 2mm, the capsule is not breached and there is no other sign of damage, as it is likely that it was caused by variations in corking machine settings or manual insertion.
Sunken Depression is 2mm or more, which is likely a sign that the cork may be defective or "easing" and increases the chance that the wine is oxidized. Depression is minor (less than 2mm) and likely caused by variations in corking machine settings or manual insertion.
Signs of Seepage Always  
Note: Corks over 15 years old begin to lose their elasticity and levels can change between the time we inspect the bottle and shipment. Old corks have also been known to fail during or after shipment. There is always a risk of cork failure with old wines and Vinfolio assumes no responsibility for this.
Condition Rejected If Accepted If
Corroded (appears as white "dust")
Corrosion on top of the capsule is advanced to the point where there is a hole in the capsule, as there is an increased chance that the cork is bad. Minor (capsule does not have open gaps or holes from the corrosion) since some corrosion is normal due to a substance/chemical in the lead capsules that make them biodegradable.
Missing or Cut
  Specific reason it is missing or cut is known and acceptable. Note that Vinfolio may request the ability to cut the capsule to check the authenticity of the wine by verifying printing on the cork. (We do not cut the capsule without the owner's permission.)
Torn or Ripped
  Tears are minor (less than ½ inch) and do not reduce likely marketability of the bottle.
Chipped or Partially Missing
Entire cork is exposed. Accepted as this is fairly common and does not indicate anything in particular about the wine condition.
Particularly expensive wines as it is often an indication of counterfeiting.  
Color Rejected If Accepted If
White (Dry)
Less than 15 years old
Color is deep gold or amber. Clear, lemon to light gold in color.
White (Dry)
More than 15 years old
Color is brownish. Color is a shade of gold.
White (Sweet)
Less than 15 years old
  Color is a shade of gold.
White (Sweet)
More than 15 years old
Shade is closer to black, as it has most likely been exposed to excessive heat. Color is a shade of amber, even mahogany as this is natural.
Less than 15 years old
Color shows any hint of brown as the wine is likely spoiled. Note that it is the shade of color that is in question, not the intensity of color, which will vary by variety and a paler shade of red is common for certain varietals and tends towards raspberry in color.  
More than 15 years old
(Assess the color using a flashlight) More brown than red. Again, it is the shade that is in question, not the intensity of color since with aging pigment is absorbed into the sediment and "falls out" of the wine.  

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Napa Warehouse644 Hanna Dr, Ste EAmerican Canyon, CA 94503

Online auctions operated by Vinfolio, Inc. in accordance with CA ABC Act Section 23355.1(d) and Section 2328 of the CA Commercial Code. © 2004-2014 Vinfolio

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