Technical themes:

High altitude viticulture

Published on July 5, 2016

Whilst certain climatic parameters are known to vary with increasing altitude above sea level (asl), it appears that high altitude viticulture is nothing without its anagram, latitude.


Accentuated cut edges (ACE) maceration on pinot noir

Published on June 29, 2016

Dr. Angela Sparrow at the University of Tasmania, Australia has devised what is known as the ACE (accentuated cut edges) technique of pinot noir maceration.


Saccharomyces interspecific hybrids: a new tool for sparkling winemaking

Published on June 20, 2016

Research presented at the ninth international cool climate wine symposium in May 2016 by Jenny Bellon of the AWRI’s yeast breeding programme showed the results of working with new interspecific hybrids of Saccharomyces yeast. The aim of the research was to identify new wine yeasts which ferment efficiently and which offer different flavours and aromas.


Controlled phenolic release – microwave maceration

Published on June 16, 2016

Controlled phenolic release (CPR) is a phenolic extraction technique that combines pre-fermentation maceration of fruit by microwave heating to 70°C, with a hold time during which the must is held at that temperature.


English and Welsh wine industry comes of age

Published on June 16, 2016

The 9th international cool climate wine symposium took place in Brighton, UK, last month – “the first serious academic wine symposium to take place in the British Isles” said keynote speaker Jancis Robinson MW.


Ten top cool climate locations

Published on May 24, 2016

Top coolest climates according to GST. Growing season temperature (GST) does exactly what it says on the tin. It is the average temperature for each month of the seven month growing season (October to April in the southern hemisphere; April to September in the northern hemisphere), divided by seven.


Sustainability credentials of different closure types

Published on May 16, 2016

It’s more than a decade since the WWF and the cork industry tried using the endangered Iberian lynx to emote consumers into using cork stoppers in preference to rapidly emerging synthetic and screwcap options. Since then, sustainability performance has become a key business indicator, and environmental sustainability (along with economic and social sustainability) is increasingly regarded as an essential part of a product’s passport to business. Where are the different closure options at?


Old vines – do they make the best wines?

Published on April 12, 2016

“Many growers say their best wine is produced from their oldest plots … [and] oenologists are convinced the best tank they get every year comes from the old plot – from Château Ausone, from Château Mouton Rothschild, and in many Languedoc vineyards, especially about carignan” said Alain Carbonneau, professor emeritus of viticulture at Montpellier SupAgro Carbonneau. Authoritative anecdotes abound that regale us with the glory of wines from old vines, but science has yet to illustrate that experiential appreciation is based on measurable parameters.


Old vines – defined only in the new world?

Published on April 12, 2016

There is a real or imagined cachet for old vines. In Europe the various monikers – vieilles vignes, viñas viejas, alte reben etc. – are used solely at the quality discretion or implied marketing intention of the producer. The new world is taking a different approach.


Are we reaching closure on the closure debate?

Published on March 18, 2016

Does a declining prevalence of media critical of TCA/TBA levels and of reduction and oxidation issues suggest that we’re nearly there on the closure debate? Or maybe that we’re more accepting of, or even inured to, complacent about, the levels of these faults? Has industry become complacent?

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