Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A Bottling Experience

I was lucky enough to have Presidents day of when Edmonds Winery was bottling their ’09 Pinot Noir.  This is Doug’s first attempt at Pinot Noir, grapes he picked up from Yakima Valley in eastern Washington. I was surprised by the depth of the flavor as it appeared very light in color as we got to taste some directly from the tank.  The bottles were unboxed then filled with Argon gas to remove the Oxygen. Doug had already moved the wine from the barrels to a tank filtering it in the process but today it would pass through another filter before entering the bottle.  Doug has a four-bottle gravity filler that is fed via a food grade pump from the tank, which has a very precise speed setting so as to not disturb the wine too much. The bottles are placed on the nipples and wine enters by gravity till it reaches the desired level then a valve stops the flow.  The bottles are then handed to someone who wipes them down and they are corked with a manual device that does one bottle at a time and is hand operated. Then the metal capsule is placed on top and run through a spinner that tightens the capsule to the bottle.  They are now ready for labeling also a semi-manual process.  On this day we bottled 53 cases so this will be a very limited selection of wine.  I recommend watching for this release.