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Separating press runs: Tips from the Pros

Are press cuts scientific or subjective? What about combining the free run with the press runs? Do different cuts get different treatments? If you’ve ever wondered about concerns like these, take some advice from this month’s professional winemakers and gain some sense of the press. Josh Beckett, winemaker for Peachy Canyon Winery in Paso Robles, California grew up making wine with his parents Doug and Nancy Beckett back when the winery was still called Tobias. These days, Peachy Canyon remains a success because of Josh’s upbringing as well as his focus on quality and small-scale batch production. Free run and pressed juice have lots of different characteristics, including color, aroma, mouthfeel, tannin levels, acid balance and cleanliness. These also rely on the varietals of the grape as well as ripeness, the type of press you use and even the particular model of the press. Even the pressure and the length of time you press makes a difference. The more experimenting and trials you are willing to put forth will give you what you are trying to achieve. The best part