This period in my wine cellar is somewhat diverse. The diversity comes from the main differences between flavor and aroma development between white/rosé wines and red ones. At this point, my whites and rosés have achieved their targets for my palate – more on this in a bit. My dry red blend wines, however, are still developing and finding themselves. I am helping them along, just like any good parent, to what I hope will be their future existence as a quality table wine. So let's take a minute and go through where I am with these very diverse wines.
Whites and Rosés
This year, you may recall I am making three different white wines. These include a primarily Vidal Blanc off-dry table wine – a bit of Chardonnay in there, a locally grown yellow peach infused Vidal Blanc, also off-dry, and dry Vidal Blanc treated with malolactic bacteria (MLF) with a hint of oak. All very different. All with a different calling in their futures from my wine cellar. The simplicity of white wine is what makes it so special. White wine's character develops rather quickly and time doesn't provide much in the form of improving them. Much of this is due to the chemistry involved with tannins. White wines don't have much. There is little to mellow out. They are what they are and that is delicious! So after fermentation, cold stabilization, filtration, and possibly a bit of back sweetening, I'm ready to bottle. Well not quite this vintage. I was intrigued by an article that Daniel Pambianchi wrote about Gum Arabic in the October-November 2014 issue of WineMaker magazine. He spoke of some of this natural product's benefits in winemaking. One, which I keyed in on, was reducing the potential for tartrates formation after bottling. I thought I'd give it a try this year, as even with me doing cold stabilization on my back deck, I sometimes end up with this visual flaw.
What I found was something much more with Gum Arabic. It adds viscosity to the wine! Is this a good thing? I believe it makes a tremendous difference, for the positive. In my addition to my white wines, rosés also, I found it greatly adds to the mouthfeel and length of finish of the wines. It helps to coat your tongue with your wine for a while so you can get the maximum out of what flavor profiles your grapes have produced this year. I think it is awesome! Thanks so much Daniel for providing this winemaking tidbit – a major one in my winemaking. I'll continue to say it, there is always something new to learn in this awesome hobby. My Vidal wines this year exude pear and finish with pineapple. Of course, the peach infused puts peach right up front in aroma and flavor. The MLF Vidal – let's just say I'm very happy! This wine will be my go to wine when I'm serving roasted chicken.
So now I'm in bottling mode with all my white and rosé wines. This includes properly sanitizing bottles, filling them while minimizing oxidation, corking the bottles, preparing and applying labels, and finishing them with PVC capsules. It is quite a job! In the end, as my wine racks become full again of white and rosé wines that I have done my best to let the grapes "show their stuff," there is a sense of accomplishment and pride that really makes it worth it. Not to mention, a bunch of wine to drink!...