Although wine is a natural drink because it comes from vineyard grapes, it goes through a period in which substances are added and treatments are carried out to enhance its flavor and quality. A professional taster or just a simple wine drinker should know which are its additives and the treatments it went through. Our website offers you the possibility to know the basic elaboration process step by step, no matter which its type or label the wine is.
- Vineyards. Here is where the elaboration process begins. The earth, land cares, climate, placement and grass have a great influence over this particular step. Although it is not an essential feature, you should follow these steps in a dry climate, during warm days and fresh nights because the temperature range is good to bring intense scents, great color concentration and really mature tannins. Too much light brings a progressive and complete maturity degree due to the fact that fruits get varietals definition and expression. If the earth has an alluvial origin and it is not deep, the results will be more effective. If watering is carried out by a traditional system of trenches, spreading water with a pressurized dripping watering, wine's quality will be assured.
- Grape harvest. This is the moment in which harvesting starts. It is essential for the following steps and that is why it is carried out with detailed controls of the state of grape's maturity. The goal is to work with good quality grapes which respond to the different winemaking needs. The harvesting of grapes for «base wine» for champagne starts in February as regards white wine and finishes in April in the case of red wine. To preserve grape's integrity, the process is made with the hands. Well kept bunches are picked out and they are included in the production process.
- Manual harvesting. Here grinding is carried out. Full bunches are received in the wine presses and they go through a process where stems are removed with specially designed machines. The grains that result from this process, depending if you are producing white or red wine, are taken to pumps or stainless steel macerating machines and then, they are taken to pneumatic presses or stainless steel tanks. The fermentation process of white and red must starts here. It is important to know that fermentation is a chemical biological process through which sugar is turned into alcohol and carbonic gas, increasing its temperature. The following step depends on the type of wine to produce: there are different procedures depending whether you are elaborating white or red wine.
- Red wines maceration. Once stems have been removed, grains are taken to stainless steel tanks for their maceration. They will remain there during 10 hours at 5oC (41oF). This procedure is carried out to enhance scents. Once the determined time has passed, fermentation begins. Temperature control is essential to preserve scents and colors. For this particular reason, tanks have a cooling system that automatically establishes degrees of temperature, placing musts between 25oC and 28oC (77oF and 82.5oF). Fermentation lasts 15 days. During fermentation process, the solid parts of the grape -skin and seeds- go up to the superior part of the tank and form what is known as «hat». Once fermentation ends, the devatting process starts and solid parts are separated from liquid ones. The mix that comes from this process is taken to pneumatic presses. There, a series of membranes press them against their walls obtaining a liquid. The next step is clarification, which consists in the precipitation of solid particles with the aim of taking wine to wooden pieces, French oak barrels of about 5000 or 30000 liters capacity. The, harvesting and evolution take place, giving as a result a complexity of flavors and scents with tannins that mature and get soft as a consequence of a micro oxygenation with the environment. When harvesting ends, a cooling treatment is carried out in stainless steel tanks keeping a temperature of -4oC (-39oF) during 15 days, with the aim of increasing natural processes and getting the proper salts from wine.
- White wine maceration. Musts are cooled and once stems have been removed, grains are taken to macerating machines to be stored during 10 hours, at 5oC (41oF). Once this time has passed, must is taken out using pneumatic presses that press the seeds. Must, dyed with different scents and free of skin, is fermented at low temperatures of about 15oC and 17oC (59oF and 62.5oF) in stainless steel tanks during 15 days. When the whole fermentation process is finished -when sugar has turned into alcohol- the beverage is clarified and filtered. Then, it is cooled with a special treatment, as in the case of red wines and then it is put into the bottle. You have to consider that white wines do not get old in barrels; they just remain inside stainless steel tanks.
- Bottling. This step must be followed after the other steps have been finished, once the product is ready to be divided and sold. At the moment of bottling, highly advanced production plants have «intelligent» readers that control the different speeds. By doing this, the product's quality and amount is supervised with the aim of getting the needed hygiene. The new bottles are taken to an interior washing machine while the stainless steel plumbing machines take the wine to the filling machines, which are being fed by gravity. Then, a mechanic installation period starts, which fills 12.000 bottles an hour. There is a machine to cover the bottles with natural corks stored in special places with specific cleaning rules. The bottles go through automatic hoppers and, later, they are labeled. The bottles labeling process is carried out at a label enterprise. Once they are labeled, they are put in cardboard boxes. Finally, the pallets that contain the bottles of wine are stored in heated storerooms at 18oC (64.5oF) during a month before being distributed to their final consumers.
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