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Spring Cleaning for Winemakers: Tips from the Pros

Spring is often seen as a time for cleaning, and there’s plenty for the home winemaker to do after a long winter. This includes scrubbing away the grime, dust and cobwebs that have accumulated in your cellar over the last few cold months. But, as our winemaking pros point out in this issue, “spring cleaning” isn’t really an accurate term for home winemaking. To make the best possible wine, they recommend making sanitation a part of your everyday routine, especially on the days when you are handling your wines. Year-round sanitation is the only way to make wines that will ever come close to perfection. That said, there’s more to do in spring than blow out the winery dust. Perhaps you’re thinking about blending your wines, or letting malolactic fermentation take hold as cellar temperatures heat up. Maybe you are getting ready to bottle, or if you have a home vineyard, you’ll begin planning for the impending growing season. Whatever the case, these three pros offer some helpful seasonal advice. Winemaker: David Higginbotham of Catacula Lake Winery in Napa, California.