Vinification is the process that transforms the grapes into wine. The process of vinification differ from region to region, financial state of the winery and the grape types. The harvesting time and the type of oak used for aging are based on the region in which the wine grapes are grown.

Wine making process involves the following stages:

  • The first step in wine making process is Harvesting or Picking. Grapes should be harvested at the right time in order to make good wine. Harvesting can be done either mechanically or by hand.
  • The process of separating the grapes from the stems and cluster parts is called Destemming. Some of the wine makers keep some fragments of the stem to increase the wine tannin.
  • After destemming the grapes are crushed to extract the juice from the skin. This is done before the fermentation process begins. In the olden days bare feet is used to extract the grape juice, now a day machines like crushers are used.
  • Separation of grape juice and the skin is named as pressing. After crushing the grape juice will flow freely, selected wineries use pressers to make sure maximum juice is released.
  • Once the grapes are pressed they are introduced into the process of fermentation. During this process the grape juice are converted into alcoholic beverage. The yeast interacts with the sugar in the grape juice and converts them into ethanol and carbon dioxide.
  • Once the wine is purified and refined, they are preserved with sulfur dioxide or potassium sorbate. During the natural process of fermentation a minimum amount of sulfites are produced, but more is added for the use of commercial preservation.
  • Wines are aged for a particular amount of time to get more welcoming wine. Once after purification, the wines are moved to wooden barrels for aging. Metal vats, concrete vats and glass carboys are also used in some cases to increase the flavor.
  • After aging, the wines are bottled. During the process of bottling a final dose of sulfite is added to the wine to prevent it from uninvited fermentation in the bottle. The bottles are then sealed with cork and screw caps.

Will Emmanuel Macron end a run of French presidents with a perceived ambivalence towards wine? A video of the new chef d'etat blind tasting on the campaign trail suggests that he at least has a better grasp of the basics versus his three predecessors...

emmanuel macron
Emmanuel Macron, France's new president.

How he stacks up against predecessors...

The post French presidents and wine: Macron’s blind tasting skills put him ahead appeared first on Decanter.


Will Emmanuel Macron end a run of French presidents with a perceived ambivalence towards wine? A video of the new chef d'etat blind tasting on the campaign trail suggests that he at least has a better grasp of the basics versus his three predecessors...

emmanuel macron
Emmanuel Macron, France's new president.

How he stacks up against predecessors...

The post French presidents and wine: Macron’s blind tasting skills put him ahead appeared first on Decanter.

Will Emmanuel Macron end a run of French presidents with a perceived ambivalence towards wine? A video of the new chef d'etat blind tasting on the campaign trail suggests that he at least has a better grasp of the basics versus his three predecessors...

emmanuel macron
Emmanuel Macron, France's new president.

French presidents and wine

Emmanuel Macron’s blind tasting test

Does France now have a president with a genuine passion for wine?

Both Macron and National Front rival Marine Le Pen tried to win winemaker votes during the presidential campaign.

But, Macron has shown knowledge of France’s wine heritage. In the run-up to the election, French magazine Terre de Vins filmed a candid series of videos with newly elected French president Emmanuel Macron, in which he shows off his blind tasting skills and declares ‘wine is an ambassador’ for the country.

French presidents and wine

Newly-elected French president shows off his wine tasting skills. Image Credit: Terre de Vins.

In the blind tasting, Macron correctly identified a Bordeaux Blanc and a Côteaux d’Aix en Provence rosé. However, he did slip up slightly on the Château Pape-Clément 2005, which he mistakenly pinned as being from Pauillac, not Pessac-Léognan.

In another video, Macron said that, ‘I was raised by my grandparents who had this formula: ‘Red wine is an antioxidant”. 

But, president Macron will need to work hard if he is to appeal to winemakers who voted for Le Pen, and to find favour with supporters and abstainers in an industry that has often complained of being un-loved in recent years. French parliamentary elections in June will be an interesting first test of confidence in him.

What about other recent French presidents?

François Hollande’s ‘toast’ with Obama

François Hollande’s feelings about wine were less defined, although he did say that he enjoyed wine in his personal life.

At the Elysées Palace, home to some 14,000 bottles for presidential consumption, cellarmaster Virginie Routis told Agence France Presse how she was given ‘carte blanche’ to choose whatever wines she liked for dinners and functions. 

There is also some confusing footage of the former French president appearing to make a fake toast with Barack Obama during his visit to the US in 2014.

Hollande raised his glass, but seems to barely let the wine brush his lips before setting it down on a tray beside Obama, who asked if it was any good. Hollande squeezed the US president’s arm with an assuring ‘oui’ before turning away.

Then again, Hollande did open Bordeaux’s Cité du Vin wine centre.

Video credit: Le Petit Journal via Closer.fr

Tee-total Sarkozy: wine rows

Nicholas Sarkozy has probably caused the most displeasure to winemakers in the last couple of decades. He was known as a tee-totaller during his presidency and his clean-living pursuits were criticised as un-patriotic by some. 

‘He could at least have the intelligence to take it in and spit it out,’ Vincent Charleux, a winemaker for Gerard Bertrand, told Reuters in 2007. 

Jacques Chirac and beer

Jacques Chirac might have been famous for building up a handsome cellar of fine wines during his time as Paris mayor, but he has been widely reported as preferring beer to wine. One diplomatic source told Decanter.com several years ago that Chirac only drank Beck’s at once official function, though other reports have claimed that he had a penchant for Corona.

François Mitterrand

François Mitterrand, who was president from 1981 to 1995, was purportedly a fan of Bordeaux’s Château Haut-Marbuzet. His economic policies also proved popular with some producers.

Decanter knows of one winemaker in Languedoc-Roussillon who used to refer to her home swimming pool as the ‘Mitterrand pool’, explaining how his government’s financial aid had helped her to build it.

Written by Laura Seal for Decanter.com

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