Posts Tagged ‘Yeast’

Scores 100 points!!!

Scores 100 points!!!

 

A price war is raging among retailers in Australia over the 2008 vintage of Penfolds Grange, which received a perfect 100-point score from The Wine Advocate.

In a bid to lure buyers with the lowest retail price, Australian liquor chain Dan Murphy’s cut its price from AU$669 to AU$645 (£423) in order to go lower than US supermarket chain Costco as the cheapest place to buy the prized new release.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, Costco responded to Dan Murphy’s discounting yesterday by knocking a further $5 off its price to bring it down to $645.

Sydney-based independent wine merchant Kemenys is also selling the wine for $645, despite it carrying a recommended retail price of AU$785 (£515).

Meanwhile, UK-based fine wine merchant Farr Vintners has waded into the pricing war, matching Dan Murphy’s and Costco’s price, selling the wine at £350 in bond, which, with VAT and duty added, works out at £422.40 a bottle.

Having put 78 bottles on sale yesterday, the wine was already moving quickly at Costco’s Melbourne store, with assistant manager Nick Weller reporting “fantastic” sales.
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My whole wine world is shaken.

What does Syrah taste like? Are floral aromas pretty? Is a “typical Bordeaux” supposed to taste like medicine and ashes? I don’t know anymore.

I’ve been to a Brettanomyces tasting at UC Davis. I described it on Twitter as spending a day in a room full of laboratory-created stink cells. I couldn’t get the taste out of my mouth for hours.

But the psychological impact … well, I may be scarred for life. As I said at the tasting, “It’s like learning that Darth Vader is my father.”

The seminar was ground-breaking for UC Davis, which previously always called Brettanomyces in wine a “spoilage organism.” This was the first time the university acknowledged that brett is an important part of some wines’ terroir. UC Davis tested 83 strains of Brett and 17 — more than 20% — were regarded as giving more positive impact than negative.

Brettanomyces under the microscope.

Brettanomyces under the microscope.

That’s a big deal. Wineries are always looking for some way to boost the deliciousness of their wine. Here is the world’s foremost university on teaching clean winemaking, suddenly saying that Brett — previously derided as the bad yeast that makes your wine smell like rotting corpses — might actually add the scent of roses.

And that’s why I’m wondering whether roses in my wine — something I used to treasure in Gewürztraminer and Riesling, and to enjoy hints of in Pinot Noir and Nebbiolo — are actually the smell of, well, spoilage.
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A Cosmos of Life!

 

 

The yeasts and fungi that are common in every vineyard may have a role in the taste of wine.

Wine producers often report that parcels of fruit from the same vineyard are as different as chalk and cheese. But if the soil is the same, the climate is the same, and the winemaking is the same, what could be causing this?

There are a number of solutions to the mystery, but a new study suggests that invisible-to-the-naked-eye microbes in the vineyard could play a large part in determining the aromas of the wine in your glass.

Stellenbosch-based researchers have been examining the microbial diversity of cabernet sauvignon grapes obtained from conventional, biodynamic and integrated pest management-run (IPM) vineyards. Not only were there significant differences between these vineyards in terms of microbial life, but diversity within each vineyard was equally important.

“Yeast species distribution is subject to… read on

Also Read the full scientific report:

By law, wine in South Africa is produced from fresh grapes, and yeast, that can either occur naturally on the grapes or gets introduced to the must. Depending on various other considerations like style, grape quality and the health of the wine, additional additions of acid, sulfur dioxide, wood products, and various fining materials can be added.

Not all wines are created equal! (Johan Botha 2012)

Why then are not all wines created equal?

On a cellular level all wine in its purist form is a dynamic and ever-changing bio-chemical environment. It is a living and breathing entity!

Why do some wines get embraced, praised and acknowledged with awards on a regular basis?

If we had a simple and easily executable answer to this, all wines would equally bare the embrace of medals and awards. Unfortunately there exist no magic spell, no secret scientific formulae or even an idiot’s guide to producing award winning wines!

What I do know, is that wines receiving accolades regularly are produced by a synergy of many different inputs.

Vineyard monitoring and management, grape selection, site selection, micro climate manipulation, terroir and variety selection, vinification techniques, wine making philosophy, time, passion, patience, fortune, freedom of choice and human restraint all being of equal value to produce an iconic wine. And who knows, maybe more than often, some plain luck!

For this month’s spotlight I have chosen the following multi-awarded wines:

Saronsberg Full Circle 2010
The wine has a deep, dark purple colour with prominent dark fruit, red berry and ripe cherry flavours, followed by seductive spice and violet nuances. The pallet is textured and full-bodied with plush fruit and wild scrub notes, capsuled in silky tannins ending in a long finish.

Awards:
International Wine Challenge 2012 – Silver Medal
Concours Mondial de Bruxelles 2012 – Gold
Sawi Top SA Wines 2012 – Platinum

Lomond Pincushion Single-Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2011
The wine has a brilliantly clear colour with green tinges. A delicate aroma of citrus, pineapple and a mix of tropical fruits on the nose is followed by an elegant palate with a fresh acidity that balances out the intense fruit flavours.

Awards:
2012 FNB Sauvignon Blanc Top 10 Wines – Finalist
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2012 – Bronze
International Wine Challenge 2012 – Bronze Medal
Top 100 SA Wines 2012 Status
Michelangelo International Wine Awards 2011 – Silver Medal
Weinwelt – German Magazine June/July 2011 – 89 Points
Decanter 2011 – Gold Award

Teddy Hall Dr Jan Cats Chenin Blanc Reserve 2010
Bright gold with green tinge, tropical fruit salad nose – pineapple and some quince. On the palate the balance is impeccable with grapefruit, vanilla and baked apple flavours. Underlining the wine’s pedigree is an intense finish which lingers long after the mouthful has been swallowed.

Awards:
Wine Spectator rated Teddy Hall Dr Jan Cats Chenin blanc Reserve 2010 91 points
Top 100 SA Wines 2012
Medal winner at the Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2012
This wine received 4½ stars Platter’s 2012 wine
The only Chenin blanc gold Medal winner at the Classic Wine Trophy Show 2012,
Awarded top 10 Chenin for the 2012 Chenin Challenge run by the magazine Classic Wine.

Kaapzicht Chenin Blanc 2012
Ripe quince, pineapple and stone fruit, with some interesting savoury undertones. Lightly textured palate, with a hint of sweetness and balancing crunchy acid, results in a brisk finish.

Awards:
Best Value Award winners for 2013
Michelangelo International Wine Awards 2012 – Gold Medal

Rijks Private Cellar Pinotage 2008
This crimson coloured wine has a unique elegant nose of red fruit and cherries, which is reminiscent of a great Pinot Noir. These attractive fruity aromas carry through onto a rich, creamy palate that is finished off with well-balanced refined tannins.

Awards:
Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show 2012 – The Best Pinotage
2012 ABSA Pinotage Top 10 finalist
Double Gold Michelangelo
Trophy winner at International Wine & Spirits Competition for best Pinotage in the world
Trophy at Michelangelo for best Pinotage
Trophy at Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show for best Pinotage
Rated as 1 of the Top 100 wines in SA

Orange River Cellars Ruby Cabernet 2011
Deep, ruby-coloured with pronounced mocha coffee aromas, complemented by almond flavours on the palate.

Awards:
Best Value Award winners for 2013
All six wines entered into the 2012 China Wine Awards won gold medals

Now that we have some excellent wines to drink, what shall we eat?
Tasty and easy to prepare, the following South African recipe is not only ideal for healthy and wholesome cooking, but also the perfect traditional South African dish to accompany our selection of bold and amazing reds:

South African Venison Pie with Red Wine and Rooibos Tea

By enjoying these, and many other, award winning South African wines and our traditional cuisine, you will soon realize that you have ample reason to be proudly South African!