excuse a newbie, but what is TCA?
Chemically speaking, it's 2,4,6 trichloroanisole
TCA, as it is affectionately known, is a small and chemically simple molecule. TCA can be detected in dry white wine and sparkling wines at levels around two parts per trillion (0.000000000002 grams in a litre of wine), and in red and port wines at around five parts per trillion.
Such low concentrations are difficult to conceptualise but it is analogous to one teaspoon in a couple of thousand olympic sized swimming pools or one second in 32,000 years.
Whilst TCA is more commonly called "cork taint", it can be misleading, because whisky can be "corked" without the TCA actually coming from the cork! It can also be imparted by fungus in the casks; contaminated bottling plant equipment and so forth.