Saturday, November 25, 2006

All Great Wines Begin With ... Lab Work!

Last night's lab frenzy - all white juice got tested, conditioned with nutrients to keep the yeast healthy, and innoculated with yeast, so wine is happening! There in the pic you can see the pails where each batch is fermenting. Each pail sits in a tub of water with ice added daily to keep fermentation cool and slow - avoids loss of aromatics in the whites. In addition to these pail there is a quarter barrel of chardonnay fermenting in an oak barrel. Further back are the large tubs with red grapes soaking in a stew of their own juice. These tubs are wrapped with insulation and dry ice added to cold soak the flavors out of the grapes - a step that costs a little extra but gives fruit extraction a head start before fermentation begins in a day or two.

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