The Winemaking Process
The wine making process begins within identifying the optimal window for harvest. The specific week is dependent on a given year’s seasonal climate conditions but harvest usually occurs in late August or early September. To determine exact timing, the winemaker will physically come to the vineyard and taste the grapes, chews the seeds, and measure the sugar content to decide when to harvest the grapes.
Vineyard workers then work diligently to harvest the grapes in the shortest possible time period. The harvested grapes are dropped into bins that are trucked to the wineries where they are crushed.
When the grapes are crushed, the skin and seeds remain with red wines but the skins and seeds are removed from white wines.
The juice, skins, and seeds from our Pinot Noir harvest are poured into stainless steel fermenting tanks. The winemaker will then add cultured yeast to this grape juice. Fermentation begins when the yeast digests the sugars present in the grape juice. Carbon dioxide and alcohol are the by-products of this process.
Following fermentation, the wines are poured into barrels for aging. Typically, the wine is aged in 60-gallon French or American oak barrels. During the barrel aging, the wines are racked several times. This means the wine is pumped from one barrel to an empty barrel so that solids can be removed from the bottom of the barrel before the given barrel can be used again.
After months of aging in the barrels, the wine is moved into the bottle where it will stay at the winery and continue to age. When the wine is sufficiently aged in the bottle, the wine is ready to be shipped and consumed by the wine lover.