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.

Calling all California wine lovers in the UK — find out the where to buy your favourite west coast wines, as Jane Parkinson rounds up the top wine shops supermarkets and online retailers...

guide to california wine
Henry Butler at Butlers Wine Cellar. Credit: Simon Dack / Alamy

Where to get your Californian wine fix in the UK...

The post UK buyer’s guide to California wine appeared first on Decanter.


Calling all California wine lovers in the UK — find out the where to buy your favourite west coast wines, as Jane Parkinson rounds up the top wine shops supermarkets and online retailers...

guide to california wine
Henry Butler at Butlers Wine Cellar. Credit: Simon Dack / Alamy

Where to get your Californian wine fix in the UK...

The post UK buyer’s guide to California wine appeared first on Decanter.

Calling all California wine lovers in the UK — find out the where to buy your favourite west coast wines, as Jane Parkinson rounds up the top wine shops supermarkets and online retailers...

guide to california wine
Henry Butler at Butlers Wine Cellar. Credit: Simon Dack / Alamy

This article first appeared in Decanter magazine’s California supplement 2017. It is currently featured on Decanter.com as part of a sponsored campaign with the California Wine Institute.


UK buyer’s guide to California wine

Wine has been notorious in the UK for its absence of middle ground pricing – roughly speaking, the £10-£15 mark. After years of being promised that California really does make wines in this range – and not just wines at rock-bottom or sky-high prices – we’re finally starting to see them break through onto the British buying scene.

Here are the best wine shops, supermarkets and online retailers to get your Californian wine fix…


Best wine shops


Butlers Wine Cellar

guide to california wine

150 California wines to choose from at Butlers Wine Cellar…

With an impressive haul of 150 Californian wines under its roof in Brighton, Butlers’ range is a case of seeing is believing. Notwithstanding the sexily priced heavyweights, such as various Peter Michael wines, it also sells fabulous ‘New Age’, low-intervention wines from the likes of Wind Gap, such as its Orra Grenache Blend at £24 (and the Nebbiolo at £40). There are plenty of reliable favourites, too, including the juicy De Loach Pinot Noir for less than £15. Overall, a great breadth and depth of styles and price can be found here.

butlers-winecellar.co.uk

Drinkmonger

This impressive, Scottish-based merchant has shops in both Edinburgh and Pitlochry and stocks a modest but well-chosen selection of 30-plus Californians, sourced from excellent importers. The offerings in the £10-£20 and £20-£30 price brackets are the strongest – and although classics, such as Ridge and Clos Du Val, occupy the pricier slots on its list, there are also excellent choices to be had for less than £15, especially Gnarly Head Petite Sirah and Moobuzz Pinot Noir.

drinkmonger.com

Lea & Sandeman

guide to california wine

Find California favourites Au Bon Climat and Qupé at Lea & Sandeman.

It’s undeniable that this award winning London-based merchant is renowned for clever finds from the Old World – France and Italy in particular – and for offering value for money, too. But it has more than 20 Californian listings that are worth a peek. While there isn’t much under £20 and the top end is populated by Bacio Divino, the less expensive wines include winemaking legend Jim Clendenen’s labels Au Bon Climat and Qupé.

leaandsandeman.co.uk

Prohibition Wines

Run by a wine-loving husband-and-wife team in north London, Prohibition Wines can be commended for its representative ranges from individual Californian producers. For example, there’s a healthy collection of wines from the experimental Birichino, including its Jurassic Park Chenin, as well as an impressive collection of Ridge from Geyserville 2013 at £34.70 to Monte Bello 2012 at £119.30. It also lists the delightful portfolio of Sandhi wines from Santa Barbara and the Santa Rita Hills, priced between £30 and £50.

prohibitionwines.com

The Sampler

guide to California wine

Head to The Sampler for a tasty and eclectic range…

With two London stores, The Sampler was one of the first of the bevy of modern independent wine merchants that now grace the capital’s streets. It represents an eclectic range of Californian wines, including Mendocino’s Handley Cellars, Hoopes from Napa and Scholium, which is in seriously limited supply. Does The Sampler sell some of the cheapest Californian wines around? No, but it does sell some of the tastiest.

thesampler.co.uk


Best supermarket


Waitrose

If you skip over the big-brand, entry-level sweet pinks, this awarded supermarket’s Californian range of about 25 wines is very appealing – albeit with some safe choices. Beneath the £15 mark there’s Bonterra’s organic Merlot, a Lodi old-vine Zinfandel and even a Monterey Pinot Noir; while Carpe Diem Pinot Noir tops the range at £32.

waitrosecellar.com


Best online retailers


Roberson Wine

Roberson

Roberson cleverly mixes old-school gems with the new kids on the block…

Drowning in trade awards for its range of Californian wines, Roberson is now exclusively online. The secret to its Californian success is that it cleverly mixes old-school gems, such as Viano Vineyards, with new kids on the block, such as Broc Cellars. Within its 180-plus range, Roberson is about breadth of choice as much as it is about value for money. The supremely delicate wines of Arnot-Roberts from Sonoma are not to be missed – they remain value for money despite a high price-tag.

robersonwine.com

Stannary St Wine Co

This online merchant has two regional specialities: Burgundy and the US. This might seem like an unlikely combination, but there are some significant cross-overs, particularly Napa Valley’s Snowden Vineyards (Stannary’s first US listing). Diana Snowden Seysses is the winemaker for both Snowden and the Seysses family’s Domaine Dujac in Burgundy; she’s married to Jeremy Seysses. Another notable producer is Failla, and there are also quirkier listings like Skylark’s Pinot Blanc from Mendocino. Generally pricey, but the wines are befitting of Stannary’s high standards.

stannarywine.com

The Vineyard Cellars

guide to California wine

Vineyard Cellars is the Mecca of rare west coast wines…

Like a museum where you can actually buy the artefacts, this retailer is the Mecca of top-end and rare Californian reds. Its penchant for the very best is evident on its website, where its most populated price bracket is £100+ a bottle. There are currently 36 listings within this lofty price range, including Peter Michael, Tor and Moone Tsai (a collaboration between former Beringer boss, Mike Moon, and the Tasi family) – as well as back vintages aplenty. To find that very special something from California, this is the place to shop.

vineyardcellars.com

Jane Parkinson is an award-winning writer and broadcaster, and a DWWA judge in 2017.

Read more on Californian wine here

California wines under £40 – and how to find value

The post UK buyer’s guide to California wine appeared first on Decanter.


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Each wine is unique. Soil, weather, geology, varietals, and the style of wine making, are all decisive yet variable factors that give each wine a unique character.
Each wine is unique. Soil, weather, geology, varietals, and the style of wine making, are all decisive yet variable factors that give each wine a unique character.
Winemakers all over the world are combining wine making traditions of millennia with innovative approaches and ideas, to address consumer demand for high quality products and a sustainable and healthy lifestyle.
Winemakers all over the world are combining wine making traditions of millennia with innovative approaches and ideas, to address consumer demand for high quality products and a sustainable and healthy lifestyle.