877.812.1137

spring harvest

Winemaker Spotlight: Grettchen van der Merwe of our South African Vineyards

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How did you get started winemaking? What first attracted you to winemaking?

I grew up in the Cape Winelands and studied Viticulture and Oenology at Stellenbosch University. I love the process of winemaking, the chemistry of it. Wine is a living thing and it is wonderful to be able to make something with the potential to be enjoyed for years to come as it grows and matures in the bottle.

What do you look for when you make wine? What is your general winemaking philosophy?

It is all about the grapes, get the best grapes possible and make sure you have the basics right, but don’t try to over engineer the process.

What is the most difficult aspect of making wine? What’s or biggest challenge as a winemaker

You are working with nature so you cannot predict what’s to come in a season and every season has its own challenges. I think the most difficult are seasons where the vines are stressed, be it from high temperatures or wet weather that can increase risk of fungal infections in the vineyard.

Are you filtering your wines?

There is a movement toward unfiltered wines, especially as consumers become more educated and willing to accept a little sediment in the bottle. I do prefer to filter my wine, but use the most coarse (largest micron size) filter available. Basically just to give the wine a rough polish as it goes into the bottle.

Are there any new winemaking techniques or tools you’d like to experiment with?

They aren’t necessarily new tools, but you can achieve a lot with good use of enzymes and tannins at vinification. I like to cold soak my grapes before fermentation; you get the benefit of good color and flavor development without the harsh tannic extraction that happens after fermentation (when alcohol is present).

What’s your favorite wine region?

Many different regions excel at specific varietals, which is part of what makes wine exciting, you can have a Syrah from South Africa; Australia and France and all three can be fantastic but also completely different in style.

We want to give a BIG Thank you to Grettchen for answering our winemaker questions and we look forward to meeting her in person on April 2nd. We would like to invite all of our winemakers to meet her Monday April 2nd from 1:00-6:00PM at our Hartford, CT Location. Grettchen will be speaking about her vineyards and favorite winemaking practices. RSVP to Christina at cmusto@juicegrape.com. This event is FREE to join and we would love you bring in some wines that you have made for Grettchen to try. Looking forward to seeing you all on April 2nd!

Want to take a Walk through our Chilean Vineyards?

Red Grapes Hanging

Take a walk through our Chilean Vineyards by clicking the link below.

http://bit.ly/2CgQkNi

Harvest will be here before you know it. White Grapes will start arriving in late April and Red Grapes will start arriving in Early May. See below for the list of grapes and juices we will have available this Spring.

Grapes From Chile:

Carmenere
Cabernet Sauvignon
Cabernet Franc
Malbec
Merlot
Petite Verdot,
Pinot Noir
Syrah,
Chardonnay
Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
Viognier

Fresh Juices from Chile:

Carmenere
Cabernet Sauvignon
Cabernet Franc
Cabernet/Merlot Blend
Malbec
Merlot
Petite Verdot
Pinot Noir
Syrah
Chardonnay
Pinot Grigio
Sauvignon Blanc
Viognier

Fresco Juices from Chile:

Cabernet Sauvignon
Carmenere
Merlot
Malbec
Chardonnay
Sauvignon Blanc
Viognier
Chardonnay/Semillon Blend

Give us a call at 877.812.1137 for more details about the Spring Harvest. Or email us at sales@juicegrape.com

Notes from our Winemaker Frank Renaldi about the Chilean Sauvignon Blanc: After the Press

Notes from our Winemaker Frank Renaldi about the Chilean Sauvignon Blanc:

After the Press

“Adjusted Brix to 21.5 (11.8% alcohol). Adjusted with Tartaric Acid to get pH = 3.24 and TA = .60. Will have to acidify after fermentation. Could have adjusted further, but ta would still be low (desired .7 – .9). Used Vin13 yeast – Very slow start. Took over 24 hours to get started. Still at 58 degree with a slow cool fermentation. No big nose yet. Looking forward to reporting more on the results once fermentation has completed.”

Don’t forget to sign up for the Spring Bootcamp with winemaker Frank Renadli! Learn how to make great wine at home in just 5 weeks!

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