Selected Results

Chemical analysis of the Chardonnay grapes at harvest resulted in the following values: 21.9oBrix sugar content, 7.60g/L titratable acidity, 2.25g/L malic acid, and 3.17 pH.
Only the dry extract and volatile acidity were statistically significantly different between the different wines (though there were some value differences that didn’t quite make it to statistical significance).
The researchers confirmed the higher dry extract in amphorae wines was due to the pomace cap maceration process.
The amphorae wines showed higher volatile acidity, straw color, and perception of tannin compared to the barrel and barrique wines.
Barrel and barrique wines showed higher vanilla flavor than amphorae wines.
Amphorae wines showed lower titratable acidity than the barrel or barrique wines (not statistically significant).
Volatile acidity was higher in barrique wines than barrel wines.
Malolactic fermentation was complete much faster in amphorae wines than barrel or barrique wines.
This again, according to the researchers, might be explained by the pomace cap, since there might have been wild lactic acid bacteria present, thus helping the process along faster than without the extra bacteria.
Lactic acid levels were more or less similar between the three wines at the end of the winemaking process.
Sensory analysis revealed:
Amphorae wines had a “mature scent”, fewer green characteristics, and fewer Chardonnay varietal characteristics. Tannins were “elegant” and the wine had a “pleasing taste” (higher than the barrel or barrique wines). A spicy scent was noted, as well as a lack of vanilla character.
Barrique wines had a lot of vanilla tones, and exhibited strong Chardonnay varietal characteristics. Characteristics noted were “fresh, harmony, and a remarkable woody flavor”. The panelists made a note to possibly blend this wine with the other wines to take the woody/oak characteristics down a notch.
Barrel wines possessed the most Chardonnay varietal characteristics, and were considered to be the most balanced with spice, light oak, and vanilla character in addition to the fruit character. Panelists noted it was “full, balanced, fruity” and had a “persistent flavor”.

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