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Flashcards in Winemaking Deck (26):

table wine

US general: a wine designed to accompany food, a still wine, relatively dry US gov: 7-14% alcohol (an arbitrary % chosen for tax reasons, higher % have higher tax) Europe: inexpensive, lower-quality wine


still wine

a wine w/o effervescence (fizz)



the percentage of sugar by weight (= Balling) To achieve desired alcohol content for table wines (9-15%), grapes are picked b/t 16-25 degree Brix (˚Brix) In Europe and some parts of the New World, Baumé is more common. Baumé reading at harvest approximate the alcohol level of the wine after fermentation. (1˚Brix=0.55 Baumé)



mixture of 80% juice, 16% skins, 4% seeds prior to fermentation



the layer of skin on top of the juice, pushed up by CO2 during fermentation to extract flavor from the skin, the cap is mixed into the juice several times daily



Several days after transportation of freshly fermented wine to storage tank, suspended solids (yeast cells, particles of grape skins and pulp) settle to the bottom, forming the mudlike material called lees (LEEZ)



after 1-2 wks, clean wine is decanted to a fresh tank. the process of settling and racking can be done once or more to clarify the wine b/f it’s transferred to barrels



headspace in the barrel produced by evaporation must be displaced by topping up the barrel w some wine from the same lot


stave / planks

toasted oak chips used in stainless steel tanks to mimic barrel flavor at a lower cost



the process of adding a substance called a fining agent (=collodial matter; mostly proteins) to the wine that will react w compounds in the lees when the wine is racked


sulfur dioxide

most commonly used additive in wine, 1st by Romans either b/f or after fermentation: prevents enzymatic degradation of the juice; antibacterial

Yeasts produce small amount so even not added, wines generally contains it.

malolactic bacteria very sensitive to it, so usu added after malolactic fermentation


typical cap management

In red wine production, the most important stylistic decision a winemaker has to make is how the skins are handled.

punching down

pumping over


carbonic maceration

a winemaking technique, often associated with the French wine region of Beaujolais

A portion or all of the grapes are not crushed but loaded into the tank as whole clusters. A small amount of fermenting must is added to begin fermentation and to fill the tank with CO2

This intercellular fermentation produces soft tannins and a unique strawberry or bubble-gum aroma.

works well w Pinot Noir, Gamay

trademark characteristic of Beaujoulais Nouveau


extended maceration

more suited to big-bodied reds (eg. Cabernet Sauvignon)

berries crushed, fermentated w typical cap mgmt; at end of fermentation, must is NOT pressed, tank is filled to the brim with a similar wine, cap left in for 1-8 wks

At first, the wine becomes more astringent and bitter, but after several wks, the tannins begin to polymerize.

Smal, harsh tannins join together and become so large that they are no longer soluble and begin to drop out, leaving the finished wine softer and more drinkable.


free run

When flavor extraction is finished, most wine is drained out of the tank by gravity, the remaining 10-20% needs to be pressed.

free run = first wine coming off the press

after free run, juice quality diminishes, more astringent and bitter


press fraction

wine removed at the end of the press cycles, usu kept separate from free run


pomace (PAH-muss)

marc (MAHR)

marc: French for pomace

dry skin left after last press cycle, used for compost


naturally present acids in grapes

also many other fruits

tartaric acid:  

  • rare in many other fruit, but found in significant concentrations in grape vines; 
  • does not get metabolized through respiration like malic acid
  • binds with the lees, pulp debris and precipitated tannins and pigments

malic acid: found in nearly every fruit and berry plant, but is most often associated with green apples


malolactic fermentation

= malolactic conversion or MLF

malic acid  malolactic bacteria> lactic acid + CO2

occurs shortly after the end of the primary fermentation but can sometimes run concurrently with it

standard for most reds; avoided for light fruity whites, but can be used stylistically for Chardonnay

  • deacidification
  • makes wine more microbiologically stable
  • diacetyle (a compound w distinct buttery character)

Oenococcus oeni, (LAB species most often desired by winemakers), found in the vineyard but often at very low levels.


méthode champenoise

young wines bottled b/f primary fermentation w tight seal, developing CO2

still considered to yield the highest quality product, usu on the lable, or as "traditional method" or "fermented in this bottle"



"tub full" or "vat full"

In the winter following harvest, the winemaker tastes the various lots of wine produced, puts together the base blend called the cuvée, which is low color, low alcohol, high acid.

It takes a lot of talent to know how the cuvée's flavors will translate into finished wine.



bottled sparkling wines are aged on the yeast cells, months to yrs depending on the style



the process in which yeast cells begin to break down during tirage, giving méthode champenoise unique flavor



a process used to accumulate yeast at the end of the neck of the bottle

After a few wks, the yeast has settled at the end of the neck and the bottle is upside down, or sur pointe.



bottles are chilled to just above freezing point, placed upside down in a brine bath to freeze the wine in the neck of the bottle, traping the yeast; when crown cap is removed, pressure of the wine expels the plug of the frozen wine, taking the yeast w it


phenolic compounds

natural phenol and polyphenols

in wine include a large group of several hundred chemical compounds that affect the taste, color and mouthfeel of wine

2 categories - flavonoids & non-flavonoids

Flavonoids include the anthocyanins and tannins which contribute to the color and mouthfeel of the wine. (on-going study into the health benefits of wine derived from the antioxidant and chemopreventive properties of flavonoids)

Non-flavonoids include the stilbenoids such as resveratrol and phenolic acids such as benzoic, caffeic and cinnamic acids.