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.

The owner of Château Pichon Baron, AXA Millésimes, has made its first foray into Napa Valley with a deal to buy Outpost Wines for an undisclosed fee.

outpost wines, howell mountain
Fog covers the lower ground in this photo looking towards Atlas Peak and taken from Howell Mountain near to Angwin.

AXA Millésimes to make Napa Cabernet...

The post Pichon Baron owner buys Outpost Wines in Napa Valley appeared first on Decanter.


The owner of Château Pichon Baron, AXA Millésimes, has made its first foray into Napa Valley with a deal to buy Outpost Wines for an undisclosed fee.

outpost wines, howell mountain
Fog covers the lower ground in this photo looking towards Atlas Peak and taken from Howell Mountain near to Angwin.

AXA Millésimes to make Napa Cabernet...

The post Pichon Baron owner buys Outpost Wines in Napa Valley appeared first on Decanter.

The owner of Château Pichon Baron, AXA Millésimes, has made its first foray into Napa Valley with a deal to buy Outpost Wines for an undisclosed fee.

outpost wines, howell mountain
Fog covers the lower ground in this photo looking towards Atlas Peak and taken from Howell Mountain near to Angwin.

Purchasing Outpost Wines, located near to Angwin in the Howell Mountain area of Napa Valley, has seen AXA Millésimes achieve a long-term ambition, according to its MD, Christian Seely.

‘We have been looking to make an acquisition in Napa Valley for some time,’ he said, announcing the deal to buy Outpost Wines from the Dotzler family. Financial details were not disclosed.

‘We were thrilled to come across the wines and the vineyards of Outpost Wines a few months ago.’

Several of Bordeaux’s top estate owners and producers have laid down roots in California in the last few decades.

Seely said the move was logical given the pre-eminence of Cabernet Sauvignon in large parts of both the Médoc and Napa.

Outpost produces an estate Cabernet Sauvignon, although it also produces Zinfandel, Petite Sirah and Zinfandel varietal wines from its 11.3 hectare vineyard estate.

Frank and Kathy Dotzler began making wine in the area following their purchase of True Vineyard in 1998.

Outpost’s current winemaker, Thomas Brown, will continue in his position following the acquisition, said Seely. Frank Dotzler will also stay on in a ‘fully operational capacity’, he said.

‘With the purchase of True Vineyard in 1998, Kathy and I embarked on a wonderful journey to try and make wines on the level of the great wines we had experienced from around the world,’ said Frank Dotzler.

‘Together with our exceptional staff, we have made great strides in achieving that goal.’

As well as Pichon Baron in Pauillac, AXA also makes wine in Pomerol and Sauternes in Bordeaux, in Tokaj in Hungary, in the Douro Valley in Portugal and in Nuits-Saint-Georges and Romanée-Saint-Vivant in Burgundy.


See also: California Cabernet 2014 panel tasting results

Published online in 2018 for Premium members

The post Pichon Baron owner buys Outpost Wines in Napa Valley 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.