Wine Experts

Winemaking Tips: Blending, Fining, and Filtering

It’s almost a cliché – the image of the winemaker sitting in some kind of laboratory perfecting the blend for a final wine. In truth, it’s much more hands on. Wine is made in the cellar, after all, using tried and true methods and careful handling.

For the commercial winery, the selections of barrels for blending can be very arbitrary – a final quantity taking precedence over a final quality. The micro-winery has a much greater incentive to strive for quality, having limited resources from which to create a final blend.  

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An attorney by day and a full time wine enthusiast, Loren focuses on Italian wines for IntoWine.com

Recent Articles for Wine Experts

Napa Valley Wineries with the Best Wine Caves

Discovering the interior of Napa Valley wineries is as exciting as experiencing the exterior of this magnificent place. Napa Valley wine caves offer visitors a chance to see a winery’s inner beauty, you’re able to witness the more refined details pertaining to the production of Napa Valley wines. Whether they’re chiseled into famous Napa Valley mountainsides or dug deep into the rolling hills, the Napa Valley’s wine caves are very cool (literally and figuratively speaking). The views from the depths of these hidden spaces are intriguing and provide insight into the complexities of winemaking; the bottling and aging, the importance of a wines environment, the temperature and storage. All these aspects of different wine making styles offer a glimpse into how a vineyard produces unique characteristics for their wines. Historically, wine caves reach as far back in history as wine itself, the idea of storing wine in an underground cool climate apparently made a lot of sense then as it does now, and the art of constructing highly functional modern wine caves has now been perfected. In order to cruise around in a Napa Valley winery’s wine cave, you’ll need to plan in advance and make a tour and tasting reservation, most tours include a wine cave excursion but feel free to ask. Here is a list of the Napa Valley’s five best wine caves:

Best Napa Valley Wineries for Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blancs grown in the Napa Valley region have striking aromas that translate into even more specific palate characteristics. This varietal is extremely versatile and the characteristics change from region to region, for instance, in France Sauvignon blanc is labeled “Sancerre” or “Pouilly-fume” named after the actual places and can take on grassier aromas then one would find in the Napa Valley. Sauvignon Blancs grown in the Napa Valley provide visitors with such specific tasting profiles and these easily diversify your wine tasting. Experiencing a Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc will give your wine flights a more well-rounded wine range ultimately aiding in furthering your wino knowledge (sometimes a goal among visiting wine novices). Here in the Napa Valley our Sauvignon Blanc is fully ripened in the heat creating bright citrus, grapefruit, and passion fruit aromas, alongside juicy peach, nectarine and melon nuances. These flavors and tastes contrast perfectly with the rich oaky chardonnays that are often highlighted in Napa Valley wine tasting. Also, Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc is known to make many ladies swoon with excitement, women tend to be its biggest fans. These Five wineries produce the best Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc in addition to the perfect place to taste them.

Easter Wines: Raising a Glass…to the Disciples

We know the Bible talks about wine; in fact Jesus' first recorded miracle was turning water IntoWine so we're assuming he might have been a Cab drinker. Okay, maybe Pinot. Definitely not Viognier. Regardless, being his disciple was a tough job: little sleep, lack of food, being yelled at, walking in sandals all day without proper arch support. So to honor Easter and the 12 disciples we’ve paired a specific wine to each disciple (actually, 11 disciples - no one wants their wine to be associated with Judas – we call that Zima, and it too died an ignoble death).

Can You Get a GREAT Bottle of Wine for Under $50?

For those of you who drink really high end wine, the prices over the last few years have been sky rocketing.  I am not speaking about the price of DRC, Lafite Rothschild or Screaming Eagle.  Luxury goods will always be expensive and the top and rarefied air items will always receive a premium based on scarcity and distribution.  No, I am speaking of wines that don’t approach that level.

If you drink with enough older wine lovers, eventually the stories come out about how inexpensive wine used to be.  They will regale you with their exploits of getting a case of Chateaux Margaux for a few baseball cards and some chewing gum as trade.  Well, ok, maybe not quite, but tales of buying 1982 First Growths for $20 a bottle seem to abound.  And that’s understandable, just as stories about buying a home thirty years ago or a fancy car re told.