Hi everyone this is Mike again. Today I thought I would post about today’s bottling! Normally bottling isn’t all that interesting, given that we bottle 1 to 2 times a week, but today kinda stood out to me.
Today we bottled two wines. We ran Semillon and then our Riesling. Both of these were rather small runs, but anyone who has been into the winery lately would know that we had sold out of Semillon in the fall, so it was good to get some in the bottle. For Riesling it was just time…it was ready to head to the bottle.
So what goes into bottling a wine? A lot! Most of bottling seems to be cleaning and sanitizing, and then more cleaning and sanitizing, but it’s very important to keep things nice and clean in a winery. Although it might be self explanatory, without cleaning and sanitizing, we would either have a wine that is ugly with all sorts of stuff floating around in it, or even worse, a spoiled wine that can taste like anything from a dirty socks, vinegar, rubber tires, mold, musty, rotten eggs and many many other not-so-pleasant tastes. So, we go through the process of cleaning our line, bottles and pumps. When that is finally done, it’s time to start bottling! With our new equipment we purchased in the Summer, we can bottle about 200 bottles per hour for a one man operation, but when we run with two people, we can do about 300 bottles per hour.
So what was so interesting about today’s bottling? Well, while bottling Semillon I noticed that the color of the wine in the bottle was a really nice light yellow and it looked awesome in the white frosted bottle! I am not sure about everyone else, but if it was me doing the buying, I would buy this one just for the bottle! Of course once I saw this, I pulled a little sample and gave it a try. The wine was crisp but I wouldn’t say tart and had the wonderful taste of lemon grass (or lemons for anyone who does not know what lemon grass tastes like). Being this wine is about 12 – 12.5% alchool, with such strong tastes of lemon, there is no perceviable alcohol taste.
Usually when wine is sampled off the bottling line I would expect it to be kind of flat, meaning not much taste. Usually after a few weeks to a month in the bottle the taste returns and we have a great wine (or at least hopefully we do). This usually happens as a result of us beating up the wine pretty good, filtering, bottling and handling of the wine is pretty rough on it and all the flavors tend to go into hiding. I am very optomistic at this point that with some rest in the bottle this will be a great batch of Semillon, given that we did not make all that much in this batch, I would suggest anyone who wants to give it a try better come into the store or order it online as soon after it’s availble as possible, as I do not expect it to hang around long if it’s as good as I expect. Don’t fret if you miss out – we will will have more ready for our busy summer season. Oh and in case you are wondering, I am hopeful to release this batch for sale by the end of March.
As for the Riesling we also bottled? Well, I have to admit I got busy and forgot to try it but it also had a very nice color to it but… it’s in a blue bottle so it’s a bit harder to tell. When I tried some before bottling I was very happy with this batch, however I am not sure it will be as good as the Semillon but only time will tell!
Tomorrow I will try and remember to take a picture of the bottle and post it on here, of course I said to myself “You have to take a picture of that bottle before you leave” but I forgot!!!!! But at least there is always tomorrow….
Well thanks for reading my blog and I hope everyone has a great week!