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Posts from 2015-08-19

Winemaking III: White wine

Upon receipt of the grapes, it forms a paste which preserves the skins and scrapes, and is transferred to the cages to be subjected to a separation process of musts. There, in a first phase, the juice flows slowly by gravity (desvinado) or light pressure (crushed) later. It must be noted that the current trend in the production of white wines is to suppress the desvinado.

The first must from the desvinado, or crushed when the desvinado is removed, are characterized by higher quality and are called run juice, flower or tear wort wort. Its main features are a great lightness and finesse, aromatic, soft, floral and fruity.

Draining and pressing. The remaining paste remains much stronger for the loss of fluid and is subjected to pressures of increasing intensity. As a result of these pressures arise up to three different types of must: the first must (light pressure-drained), musts second (medium pressure) and third or press (strong pressure) musts. Each of the qualities obtained subsequently fermented separately to obtain different types of wine.

The remnants that remain in the press are the marc, as have not fermented, containing sugar and are called sweet or fresh grape. They may be subjected to different processes which result pomace and other alcohol derivatives.

The must thus obtained are provided with numerous suspended solids are mostly from the grape. By settling it proceeds to separation. This process involves static must stand for a day, but with special care lest it begin to ferment. The solids are falling to the bottom by its own weight and then, following a meticulous control, clean musts are decanted and transferred to stainless steel tanks for fermentation.

Fermentation. The clean must of solid matter is fermented at a temperature ranging between 18 and 22º. This process makes both the splitting of sugars into alcohol and the release of carbon takes place slowly and leisurely way. The aim is to preserve the aromas of the wine and thus obtain the highest final quality.

The alcoholic fermentation takes place for 10 to 15 days. The fermentation ends when the wine contains between 1 and 2 grams of sugar per liter, at which point, with little presence of sugars is completely dry. However, more and more scarce house completely dry white wines as is usually maintaining a certain proportion of residual sugar for greater aromatic intensity.

The wines of the wettest areas, equipped with a high proportion of malic acid, absent wines from warmer places are subjected to a second fermentation called malolactic or maloalcoholic. By the action of bacteria (malolactic) or yeast (maloalcoholic), malic acid is converted to lactic acid or alcohol. This process can be performed either simultaneously with the fermentation and subsequently.

Racking and clarification. After fermentation, between the second half of November and early January, the wine is subjected to two or three racking to remove solid residues derived from the fermentation. However, after racking still often remain suspended solids that could degenerate, affecting the appearance of wine and giving odors and flavors.

To remove these particles wine undergoes a clarification process that lasts about ten days. It involves inserting substances that carry solids remains and settle to the bottom of the tank. Then proceeds to the filtration of wine, the wine to pass through other substances retaining still contains particles. The methods used in this process are varied: from earth filters and filter plates to modern amicróbicos based sterilants.

Finally, the wines are selected and separated by qualities that, through appropriate mixtures, it is intended each to a corresponding type depending on desired.

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