Monday, September 21, 2009

Tasting Malbec berries

tasting malbec berriesComplement to sugar, acidity and pH analysis made in the laboratory (see our post last year about monitoring of maturation), tasting berries allows to determine the advancement of maturity by estimating aromatic and polyphenolic potential.

There are several types of maturity for the grapes including such as physiological maturity indicating that the pips are able to germinate. Unfortunately, this maturity is not usefull to the winegrower because it comes few days after veraison in mid August for the Malbec in Cahors.

Other maturities are more relevant to determine harvest time and it is by tasting berries that we can estimate them, the features of the grapes will become those of the wine.
- "Technological" maturity : the pulp, acid and sticked both to the skin and seeds will become very sweet, with low acidity and very fluid (cell breakdown) at maturity.
- Aromatic maturity (mainly on the skin) is the transition from a thick skin with herbaceous aromas to a skin that breaks easily when chewing, with notes of intense jam.
- The phenolic maturity for which the pips of a green color and very astringent, will gradually turn brown and become crisp, toasty and nutty, instead of herbaceous notes.

We must separate pulp, skins and pips when tasting (see photo), and tasting them in that order because if the pips aren't ripe, they disrupt the palate so much with their astringency that you won't be able to taste pulp and skin !
These different maturities come only together on the best terroirs and for great vintages. In other years, we must make a choice to preserve the balance of wine and over all to make the Cahors wine we estimate the best.

No comments:

Post a Comment