Chilledtank-225x300…well its getting close to that time of year…   Let me be the first to wish people following me here a safe and happy holiday season.
While I can’t confirm the presence of mistletoe in the cellar, I can say without a doubt that season is not entirely lost as we’ve begun cold stabilizing one of our new wines for the new year.  For those unfamiliar with this process, you can see a picture of it below.  Basically, we recirculate a very cold solution (well below freezing in fact) through a double walled portion of the tank.  The net effect is, that the wine inside also is chilled to below freezing.
Chilled Tank
As this happens, a reaction takes place causing acid (specifically, tartaric acid) to crystallize and stick to the sides and bottom of the tank.  When the process is over, we rack the wine/filter it into a clean tank.  Voila, a ‘cold stable’ wine is born.
For those asking why we do this, the answer is simple.  If we did not, and you put a bottle of wine in a cold refrigerator for a long time, it would happen inside the bottle and you would be left with a less-than-perfect bottle of wine to share with family and friends over your holiday dinner.   While the acid crystals (colloquially known as ‘wine diamonds’) are largely tasteless and odorless they do have a gritty texture and can appear to make a wine cloudy and not so pleasing to the eye.
At any rate, we strive to make sure everything we produce is something we can be proud of.  Hopefully you agree.  Here’s to a fabulous Christmas season filled with family, friends, and plenty of fond memories.   …or as my old man says, Buon Natale! (Merry Christmas in Italian)
L. Paul Vezzetti
Winemaker, The Vineyard at Hershey