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winemaking ABC
winery guide


   Aromas: Describe the different flavors present in a young wine. These flavors are for the most part belonging to the fruity, floral, spicy and woody aromas. When a wine ages, it will develop a bouquet.

   Bouquet: Typical aromas developed by an aged wines. These are the aromas you will find in quality wines that are able to improve with time.

   Brettanomyces: Barnyardy, animal smell that develops in the wine due to certain yeast strains.

   Brix: A measure of the percentage of sugar in the grape juice or must.

   Cold soak: A winemaking process whic consists in cooling the must to render the yeasts inactive for few hours to few days. The idea is to extract more color and flavors from the skins before starting the fermentation.

   Corked: Ninety per cent of cork taint makes the wine taste mouldy. This odour may come from corks damaged by chlorinated products used for bleaching; a substance whose threshold of perception is extremely low (less than one billionth of a gram per liter!), then forms. This is trichloro-2,4,6-anisole, or TCA, which contaminates the cork and the wine in contact with it.

   Crushing: A mechanichal winemaking process consisting in breaking the skins of the berries to free the juice. It is very important in red wine making to help the maceration of the must.

   Destemming: mechanichal winemaking process, which consists in the separation of the stems from the berries. It is usually associated with a crushing of the berries.

   Fermentation: The single most important chemichal process in the making of wine. The yeast are going to act as catalyst, transforming the sugar present in the must into alcohol, gaz, and heat. The fermentation is closely monitored by the winemaker, and is the main factor in the success of the finished wine.

   Finish: Describes the sensations that are still present on your palate, once you have swallowed the wine. It is common for professional wine taster to count the seconds before this sensations disappear. Longer the sensations are presents, better the wine is.

   Must: The mix of skins, pulp, and juice that is subject to the fermentation for red wines.

   Nose: Differents aromas developed by a particular wine. When the wine is aged, wine tasters use the term bouquet instead of aroma.

   Oxydise: An oxydise wine develops sherry-like aromas due to a prolonged exposition to air.

   Palate: Represents all the flavors and tactile sensations developed by a specific wine that has been drank by a wine taster.

   Racking: consists in transfering the wine from a container to another. It is important to clean the wine from any lees or sediments to oxygenate it.

   Sulphur: The smell of sulphur appears in wine that have been incorrectly treated with sulphur dioxide (SO2). Sulphur is essential in winemaking as an anti-oxydant and anti-bactorial. However, when added in large quantity, SO2, becomes a fault. It is close to the smell of burned matchsticks.

   Vegetal: The press cake develops vegetal notes after pressing. Sometime this taste of leaves and crushed stalksis so persisten after fermentation that it bothers the taster. Underripe grapes, insufficient destalking or even overpressing at harvest time are the main reason for this fault.