Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Getting High On Your Own Supply

This week has been the wine pressing week in our operations. I like to press when there is a couple of degrees Brix or bit over 1.000 Specific Gravity of fermentable sugars in the must. So far, Cabernet Sauvigon and Merlot are completed and in the barrels. This weekend the Syrah will be pressed off into the barrels and then I can stowe away all of the fermentation tanks and transfer buckets and regain some of my winery space.

So, I wanted to share that I think that the wine pressing process is my favorite of the entire wine making process. Why? Because the product is at a point where the true flavors start to shine and is not masked by so much of the sweetness of the grape sugars. And the fact that we are pressing, transferring, and sipping..ooohhhh..12-13 percent ethanol wine.

I love sipping the first runnings, with a bit of particulates and getting an idea of the flavor profile. Then once the must is transferred to the press and the bladder starts to push out liquid, I take another sample that is a bit clearer from the natural filtering of the skins. Mmmmmm...thats-a-niice.

Finally there is the final press runnings that shows me it's time to slower 'er down and not let too many harsh flavors make it through, but enough to give the wine some balls.

By this time, I probably have had my equivalent of a bottle of wine in sampling through out the pressing process and I just love every bit of it. It is very, very hard to resist putting your sample glass under the stream of red liquid flowing like a fountain from the press.

Hell, it is the results of my damn hard work..why shouldn't I get high on my own supply.

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