These last golden days have led to an incredible coloring of our red grapes (Zweigelt, Pinot Noir, St. Laurent and Cabernet Franc).
Stems and seeds are showing the colors of coffee and hazelnut, a sign of ripe tannins, so we hope for great red wine quality in 2012. For this reason we purchased five new wooden fermentation tanks (vats of local oak measuring about 2m in diameter).
In these tanks the grape skins are pushed to the top by the fermentation process forming a dense cover. This grape skin cap has to be submerged everyday, in order to keep a close contact between the fermenting wine and the floating skins, which allows a gentle extraction of the polyphenols (tannins) and pigments leading to intensive color and tight structure in the wine. The fermentation vats are opened only long enough for the submersion. By this process the so called “resveratrol” transfers from the fruit into the wine. Red grape skins of the cool or moderate climate areas seem to contain abundant resveratrol, whose antioxidant properties have positive effects on the human body.
This week we continue with the harvest of our red grapes (Zweigelt, St Laurent & Pinot Noir) The later ripening Cabernet Franc may continue to hang on the vines for two or three more weeks.
In the meantime Sekt base wines have mostly finished fermentation and “landed” near the desired 11% alcohol by vol. This means that, after the traditional bottle fermentation, the final alcohol will attain an ideal 12% alcohol by vol. After maturation in the bottle the final Sekt will be soft and creamy, not tasting too light or too heavy.