Occasionally on this blog we drop some industry terms that may leave you puzzled. We’ve gathered some of them here to help up your “wine cred”. Any terms we overlooked that you’d like us to define?
Malolactic Fermentation: This process changes a wine’s acidity and gives it a smoother texture. “Malo” transforms tart malic acid into softer lactic acid (the same kind in milk). Not all wines go through this stage of fermentation, but we apply it to our Chardonnay to increase its flavor complexity and texture. Check out this post on making Chardonnay to see photos of the process.
Tannins: All wines have tannins in them, although in varying amounts. Harsh tannins create a drying sensation in your mouth. To reduce the amount of harsh tannins in our Cabernet Franc we use a basket press when we process the grapes. The basket press extracts fewer tannins from the seeds and skin of the grape. Check out these photos of our winemaker, Richard, using the press.
Wine Blend: A wine blend is composed of two or more grape varieties (a Châteauneuf-du-Pape contains 13 different types of grapes!). The goal is to create a wine with a complex flavor. At Greenvale we make three different wine blends: Skipping Stone, Elms Meritage, and Cabernet Franc.