What is a Bunghole?

If you’ve ever toured a winery, particularly a cellar, you’ve probably seen it – the glass or plastic stopper wedged into the top or side of a  barrel. The stopper itself is called a “bung.” So it only follows that the whole in which that stopper is wedged is called the “bunghole.” There is a hole here for obvious reasons – how else do you get the wine in or out of the barrel? Winemakers also use the bunghole for stirring the wine on its lees, tasting the wine during the aging process and of course, racking the wine when it has finished its time in the barrel.

So next time you’re touring the cellar, go ahead and use this slightly off-beat (I say this only because apparently Beavis & Butt-head used it in a more derogatory way) wine term since you’re well aware of what it actually means.

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