Wednesday, 10 March 2010

The Vent de Folie Blanc 2009 was taken out of barrel yesterday

Today it’s the turn of the GG 2009 to be blended and prepared for the bottling in two weeks time.

It’s a big job as most of the barrels are up six high on the barrels stacks so Cellar Master Petit Denis is here to help for the day. The wine is slowly and gently drawn from the barrel with a stainless racking spear until the barrel is empty.

The wine has to be prepared well in advance of the bottling date to ensure that it is clean and stable. Once we have racked off the sediment in barrel the wine is still a little hazy so we have to give it time to settle in the cold stainless steel vats.

The next thing to do is to stabilise the natural proteins that occur in the wine before filtration. If this is not done then, if the wine is slightly warmed – either in transport or just on the kitchen table overnight – the proteins will drop out of solution and cause the wine to appear extremely cloudy.

The proteins are stabilised by adding a very small dose of naturally-occurring earth like bentonite in a slurry form to the wine. Basically, the positive ions of the proteins stick to the negative ions of the bentonite when the slurry is added and mixed in. All the bentonite then gently sinks to the bottom of the vat leaving behind a bright, clear and protein free wine! The wine is now stable and ready for bottling.

The Chai is slowly emptying and now most of the reds have their appellation certificates, I can begin to prepare for their transport to the Chai. My Midi trip however has been cancelled tomorrow due to the huge freak snowfall in Catalonia and the Roussillon, so I have now planned to go next week to finalise all the 09’ Midi reds.


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