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.
Château Figeac 1949

Wine Legend: Château Figeac 1949, St-Emilion 1GCC, Bordeaux, France Bottles produced N/A Composition 50% Cabernet Franc, 34% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Malbec Yield 25hl/ha Alcohol 12% Release price N/A Price today A jeroboam of the wine was sold at Christie’s in 2017 for £8,225 A legend because… Long regarded as an archetypal Bordeaux, with […]

The post Wine Legend: Château Figeac 1949 appeared first on Decanter.


Château Figeac 1949

Wine Legend: Château Figeac 1949, St-Emilion 1GCC, Bordeaux, France Bottles produced N/A Composition 50% Cabernet Franc, 34% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Malbec Yield 25hl/ha Alcohol 12% Release price N/A Price today A jeroboam of the wine was sold at Christie’s in 2017 for £8,225 A legend because… Long regarded as an archetypal Bordeaux, with […]

The post Wine Legend: Château Figeac 1949 appeared first on Decanter.

Château Figeac 1949

Wine Legend: Château Figeac 1949, St-Emilion 1GCC, Bordeaux, France

Bottles produced N/A

Composition 50% Cabernet Franc, 34% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Sauvignon, 4% Malbec

Yield 25hl/ha

Alcohol 12%

Release price N/A

Price today A jeroboam of the wine was sold at Christie’s in 2017 for £8,225

A legend because…

Long regarded as an archetypal Bordeaux, with a beguiling bouquet that has evolved over decades, plus remarkable distinction and length. 1945, 1947 and 1949 were all great vintages in Bordeaux – and in retrospect were great bargains at the time. It seems appropriate to focus on 1949, as this was the favourite wine of the late owner Thierry Manoncourt, and the first vintage under his sole control. He relished the wine’s freshness and perfectly ripe Cabernet Sauvignon fruit.

Looking back

After time in a prisoner of war camp followed by studies in agronomy, Manoncourt returned to the family property in 1947. His studies gave him a level of technical expertise that was relatively uncommon in St-Emilion after the difficult war years. Careful study of Figeac’s soils helped him to make the right choices about varietal balance in the vineyards, and he introduced a second wine in 1945 to improve quality of the grand vin further.

Over many decades, until his death in 2010, Manoncourt, with his wife Marie-France always at his side, guided Figeac through a succession of great vintages.

The vintage

January and February were exceptionally dry. However, by the time of flowering in June, the weather had turned cold and rainy, which reduced the crop. In July the temperature topped 40°C, which in those days was highly unusual in Bordeaux. Storms gave some relief for the parched vines. Harvest began on 30 September, but yields were very low as hydric stress kept the berries small. These conditions gave the wine great intensity of flavour.

The terroir

The 54ha estate is in a single parcel that has scarcely changed since 1892. The 40ha of vines spread over three gravel croupes that run from north to south. The soil has little clay and a good deal of sand, which probably accounts for the wine’s elegance and also for the unusual grape mix in the vineyards: about a third each of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon. The latter often doesn’t ripen in St-Emilion, but usually does so here.

The wine

Thanks to his studies, Manoncourt understood the process of malolactic fermentation, as well as temperature control during alcoholic fermentation, and other winemaking techniques. The grapes were vinified in large wooden vats at about 28°C, using indigenous yeasts. Although today the wine is aged entirely in new oak barrels, this was only introduced in the 1970s.

The reaction

In 1991, James Suckling reviewed the wine for Wine Spectator: ‘Perhaps the greatest Figeac ever made… Ripe fruit and black liquorice aromas, a hint of violets. Full-bodied, with masses of bitter chocolate and ripe fruit flavours and a very long finish. Superb.’

The late Michael Broadbent adored this wine: ‘A particular feature is its extravagant fruitiness, glorious fragrance, and at [one] tasting, a taste I described as like raspberries and cream. [In 1998] it was sheer perfection: surprisingly deep in colour though a fully mature rim; a sweet, rich, totally delicious bouquet and flavour.’

Jeff Leve of The Wine Cellar Insider gave it a perfect score in 2018: ‘This was majestic… From an imperial, opened at the château, heartstopping is the best word to describe it. Layer after layer of perfectly ripe, silky, textured, viscous, elegant cherries and plums topped with flowers, Cuban cigar wrappers, smoke, truffle and kirsch. The finish stuck with you for 60 seconds, or more. The memory lasts a lifetime.’

Jane Anson tasted it in 2017 for Decanter Premium, noting it still had a ‘sweet, rich plum character’, as part of a Figeac vertical which she said demonstrated ‘the older vintages regularly showed how this is a wine worth the wait.’


See more Wine Legends here

The post Wine Legend: Château Figeac 1949 appeared first on Decanter.


Read full article on decanter.com


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.

Laurel Gray Vineyards

Feed not found.