Identifying the finished wine

vinthillpremtgIt is always easier to drive to a location if you know the route. Chances are you won’t get lost along the way. Winemaking is similar. If you know what you are looking for, you can craft the wine towards that destination. In July we met with Chris Pearmund, co-owner of Vint Hill. The purpose of this meeting was to discuss the type of wine we would like to make. I took two bottles of wine with me. One was the Cab that I made a year ago and the other was a 2004 Cab from Doffo Winery in Temecula, Ca. Chris provided a Cabernet Sauvignon he bottled with a Vint Hill label. I took my Cabernet Sauvignon as an example of what I didn’t want my wine to turn out as.

We sampled the wines and discussed them. I had a list of goals that I’d like to accomplish in crafting a barrel of wine. During the wine tasting I was able to also say what I did not want my wine to turn out as. One of my goals is to craft a wine to be fruit forward. I do not care for Cabernet Sauvignon grapes that were harvested early and under ripe with their vegetative aroma and taste. I prefer the fruit aroma and taste over the more ripe Cab grapes that develop a jam aroma and taste. Regarding alcohol, I’d like to be around 14%. Chris suggested that we aim for 14 ½% because some of the alcohol will evaporate during the months the wine is aging in barrels. I also want the wine to have noticeable tannins that are soft. I’d like to go with French oak barrels and extend the barrel aging by several months. Chris made some suggestions such as post fermentation maceration that will help achieve the goal of the fruity aroma and taste.

This meeting was beneficial. It provided a means of communicating what the finish wine I’d like to create would be like and Chris was able to talk about what we could do in this state of the art wine to achieve those goals.

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