Our objective is to make great wine. Our strategy is to combine sustainable, quality-driven vineyard management practices, high quality winemaking equipment, proven traditional vinification techniques and an uncompromising commitment to quality and innovation.
Each step of our winemaking process was carefully developed to ensure that the wine has every opportunity to achieve its maximum potential. Let’s use Pinot Noir as an example. Utilizing our 5–level gravity flow design, the wine can be crafted using the gentlest of processes from picking of the grapes through to the filling of the barrels.
Here’s what happens: The handpicked grapes arrive at our “harvest doors” at the top level of the winery in small 14 kg baskets. The baskets are tipped by hand onto our slowly shaking sorting table, where our trained harvest crew can visually inspect and remove any unwanted bunches. Only those bunches deemed worthy carry on to the highly effective, yet gentle de-stemmer/crusher.
From here the grapes descend into 4.5 tonne, temperature controlled fermenters, specially designed to allow for manual manipulation of the fermentation cap. This involves using elbow grease (harvest crew power) and hand tools such as the “outil de pigeage” (a type of stainless steel plunger) to gently push the floating grape skins back down into the fermenting wine. This is done every 6 hours to facilitate extraction of colour and tannins from the skins into the wine.
When the time is right the contents of the fermenter will be drained by gravity into the press below, where a carefully orchestrated series of gentle squeezes will liberate the wine from solids. A brief stay in a tank at the lower level will allow the wine to settle more suspended solids before it is racked (again by gravity) to the French oak barrels waiting in the lowest recesses of the winery. This is where the aging process begins. The final step is the blending of the individual barrels to create a harmonious bottle of wine.
With all this attention to detail, by the time the wine is ready to drink, you can count on a great bottle of wine!
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