An ancient technique, probably adopted first by the people living in today’s Georgia, namely those to whom recent archaeological discoveries attribute the spread of “Vitis Vinifera” throughout continental Europe.

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An ancient technique, probably adopted first by the people living in today’s Georgia, namely those to whom recent archaeological discoveries attribute the spread of “Vitis Vinifera” throughout continental Europe. Several thousand years later, this methodology has been rediscovered and many winemaking realities have launched themselves into this adventure; in fact, this type of container allows micro-oxygenation just like wooden barrels, but unlike the latter, it does not release aromas, allowing the wine to express the varietal characteristics of the grape.

There are many producers who use ceramics, stoneware or other mysterious mixtures for their production of wine jars. I believe that the real Jars or Amphorae, wherever they are made in the world, are those produced in terracotta. The rest are only copies … which, by all means, can work very well, but have little to do with the ancient tradition and the charm of the authentic terracotta vessels. Even the results are quite different, in fact terracotta “breathes” while jars made from ceramics, stoneware or similar, are closer to concrete or steel. Today, terracotta amphorae producers are springing up in America, France, China, etc. I think it’s great that a material like terracotta, which seemed destined to almost disappear has become a protagonist once more!

Five questions for…Leonardo Parisi, producer of terracotta amphorae for wine

Oregon made qvevri

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Andrew and Annedria Beckham are the owners of Beckham Estate Vineyards in Sherwood, Oregon, where Andrew is the winemaker. Unique to Beckham Estate Vineyards, Andrew Beckham blends his two passions, wine and art, using Amphorae. Amphorae are terra cotta vessels used as part of an ancient tradition of winemaking in terra cotta vessels, thought to originate in the Republic of Georgia. This is part two of the Beckham oral history interviews. This interview takes place at Union Wine Co. in Tualatin, Oregon where Beckham stores and makes his wine. In this interview, Beckham tells about his experiences using Amphorae. To access more material in this collection, please visit Digital Commons at http://digitalcommons.linfield.edu/ow…. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BB1MW2kB3a4

A Comparison of In-Amphorae ( Qvevri ) Winemaking to Barrels/Barriques in Chardonnay Wine

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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”.

Qvevri from Eastern Georgia

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Qvevri differ in their clay, which is always sourced locally. Remi’s clay comes from the Shuamta mountains, about 20 minutes away from his home. It is a dense clay with high lime content. He explained that lime is good because it is an antiseptic and has natural cleansing properties. The primary element to avoid in qvevri making is iron, which can impart bad flavors to wine.

http://christycanterbury.com/2014/09/08/the-near-lost-art-of-the-qveri-and-its-wines/

Characterization of Selected Organic and Mineral Components of Qvevri Wines

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Characterization of Selected Organic and Mineral Components of Qvevri Wines

via Characterization of Selected Organic and Mineral Components of Qvevri Wines.

the 2 d Qvevri Wine Symposium in Georgia – Four Monasteries and no funerals: Georgian Adventures

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Qvevri Wine Symposium in Georgia. Some were writers and photographers, some were winemakers who used clay pots in their vinification, and others were grizzled wine trade pros with a natural swerve to their step. The trip was organised to a t, balancing the needs of education, culture-vulturing as well as copious spiritual – and spirituous – refreshment. One can say without doubt that coming into contact with another culture teaches you about your own.

via Four Monasteries and no funerals: Georgian Adventures.

Georgian Wine Association – Vinoterra – Tasty Wine from a Qvevri

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Georgian Wine Association – Vinoterra – Tasty Wine from a Qvevri.

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