Ageing on lees

For many wines, ageing on the lees is fundamental to their production, most notably in traditional-method sparkling wines and white Burgundy. Producers of the former tout the time spent on lees as a quality indicator, and many still wines call out their sur lie...

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Wine bio-protection instead of sulphur dioxide

It’s easy to understand why sulfite additions are such a basic tool of winemaking. Sulfur dioxide (SO2, also commonly referred to as sulfites) is an effective antibacterial and antioxidant agent in wine, and sulfur-based products are also effective against fungal...

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Natural (unfortified) wines usually contain alcohol concentrations of between 11 and 16% alcohol by volume. In South Africa, which is considered a warm viticultural climate, alcohol levels usually range between 13 and 16%.   Factors that influence final...

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Steering away from flat and flabby Merlot

Introduction Merlot is known for its supple texture and ripe fruit flavours, however, it can be a challenging variety to work with as it is known for high sugar and low to medium acidity musts, especially in warmer grape-growing climates.1 Its tendency to overripen...

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Predicting alcohol levels in wines

Estimating potential alcohols based on grape must analysis is not as straightforward as many winemakers assume. This article by the Australian Wine Research Institute addresses some key points to be taken into account. The science Theoretically, yeast converts...

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