Today I finished prepping the red wines for bottling on Tuesday, More specifically I filtered them. Big GASP, I filtered a red wine. Yes it is true, for the first time since 2006 a filter machine has been used on a red wine.
Not an easy decision, I can promise you. For the longest time I have been steadfast in my resolve to bottle wines with as little intervention as possible, amongst other things, this has meant bottling red wines with no filtration of any kind.
White wines are a completely different story. More to come on this subject after I filter them tomorrow. [And admittedly take some photographs]
Simply though, filtration is used as a means to stabilize; thus preventing the onset of future spoilage; or in the case of our reds for cosmetic reasons. I received a e-mail the other day from a customer asking about the “sand” in the wine, I kid you not, SAND. I’ll let you know though, they loved the wine, just thought sand was peculiar and thus wanted a refund. It was a bit of a wake up call that made me realize that other people see wines differently to the way that I see them
Customers are the life line of our business, without them good wine remains un-sold and although I drink a lot, I cannot consume all we produce so therefore I have to listen to what they are saying.
Although sediment in wine in my opinion is a sign of quality, it might be a bit too soon to push that envelope without the risk of alienating our customers. A wine that is slightly hazy or gritty might be perceived as faulty by some, although it is up to us to educate. So for purely cosmetic reasons, I decided to run the wines though a 2 micron filter, thus removing all sediment in the wine. This is a double-edged sword though, because with extensive ageing of this wine, sediment may occur [through bindings of proteins and tannins]. Since the two wines in question are the Consensus and Chambourcin, the chances of them being laid down more than 5 years seems remote, I know our wine club members and they love their wine.
Do not fear sediment, a simple decanting of the wine should do the trick, but in the case of our 2009 Consensus and Chambourcin, NO SEDIMENT ALLOWED.
Stephen [The Sediment Slayer]