Today's the first quiet day in almost a month for my Vincent wine project. After getting ready for the grape harvest, bringing pinot noir grapes into the winery, fermenting the grape juice into wine, then draining and pressing the contents of all three fermenters, all that's left is to let the new wine settle for a few days, then put it into a variety of French oak barrels.
So far, seven of nine barrels are full of wine from fermenters drained and pressed last week. Yesterday saw the last fermenter drained and the skins loaded into the press to squeeze out the remaining wine. Today, there's nothing to do but wait until tomorrow when those lots of wine are put into barrel. I expect the free run wine from that last, one ton fermenter to give me 2 barrels of wine plus a little extra. Yield isn't an exact science. One of the earlier barrels isn't quite full, so that can be topped off with a few more gallons. Any remaining free run wine and all the press wine from this lot will go into a variable capacity steel tank.
We'll use that last bit of wine to top off the barrels over the coming year. Wine slowly evaporates in the barrel aging process, so every couple of weeks each barrel needs to be topped up with about a half bottle worth of wine, depending on the humidity level in the barrel room. The idea is that we'll end up with about nine barrels of wine, or 225 12-bottle cases, meaning I better get focused on finding eager wine drinkers. You interested? Let me know and I'll put you on my list for next spring when I'll send out my first offer. Write me at vincentfritzsche [at] yahoo [dot] com