Oak barrels, where wine sleeps its beauty sleep....
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Tend to be the winemaker’s pride & joy. The barrels are always happily presented to every visitor & the barrel room usually is the winery’s main attraction.
Want to know more about them? Check the back label where you’ll usually find all in info you need: their size, country of origin and even age.
The principle seems easy: make wine, move it to oak barrels, where it ages and then straight to the bottle, couldn’t be simpler.
But here, as in every winemaking decision, there’s much more to aging than simply leaving the wine to “sleep” in barrels for a couple of years. It is a complex operation with many implications. There are many variables to consider and finding the right balance between the barrel’s size, its type of wood & the length of ageing is an art of its own.
Behind all the romanticism that surrounds aging stands the daily handling of the barrels. Most important of all is hygiene. Clean barrels are the basic condition to get clean & pure fruit flavours with no after taste and with a good level of oak spice. And this is exactly why we rack. Racking takes places every few months, we empty the barrels and move the wine to a stainless steel vat. By doing so, not only can we clean the barrel from the sediments left in the barrels but also aerate the wine. The later is especially important as it prevents off flavors and smells that happen due to reduction and lack of air.