Did someone order pizza?

October 7th, 2009 | Uncategorized

Apart from everything else that is happening in the bodega at the moment – cleaning, preparing orders, drinking tea, etc. we also have the small but not insignificant matter of making wine.

After the removal of some impurities by chilling the new grape must and allowing it to ‘settle’, we allow the temperature to recover and then begin the process of innoculation (in reality a task that was completed a few days ago). Now, some in our area might claim that they ferment their wine with the natural yeasts that live on the grape skins, but in our own experience this simply does not work. The ‘wild’ yeasts are just not strong enough to survive the rigours of a full alcoholic fermentation, which is why they have to be augmented each time with cultured yeasts.

It is quite amusing when the yeast salesman comes knocking these days – he virtually opens his catalogue, and asks “well, what flavour do you want?” In the case of our bodega the answer is always the same – we want a very neutral yeast that does not mask or alter the natural fruit of the albariño grape. In my former life as a wine buyer I always looked for wines that were the most typical of the area from which they originated, a ‘textbook wine’ if you will. Today nothing has changed – Angela and I still focus our efforts on making the most pure and typical albariño that we can…… a wine that does exactly what is says on the label.

The photo above shows the yeast just after it has been rehydrated, and before we add it to the tanks. At this moment the cellar is filled with a wonderful aroma (assuming that you like the smell of yeast), and Angela just can’t resist getting her hands into the foaming mass to help start it working. In fact, if I didn’t stop her she would probably start eating the stuff!

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