Refinement and persistance – malolactic fermentation
Wine offers infinite surprises. There is a wide array of knowledge that is available to the passionate wine lover and novice alike, those who want to get deeper into this wonderful world of vines, smells of must. This is a world that opens one to physics, botany, biology, history and even literature. Wine has been talked about for millennia because it has been produced for millennia. It is a world which gradually refines techniques and procedures, which have led to the birth of increasingly high-quality products. Let’s talk about one of the processes that happens in the cellar, a process that over time has been refined. The keyword here is fermentation.
All grape must eventually becomes wine thanks to alcoholic fermentation, and the transformation of sugars into alcohol and carbon dioxide. This is the basic process for turning grapes into wine. There are other types of fermentation which contribute to enriching the final product, giving wine different shades and different aspects, both from the point of view of smell and that of taste. Malolactic fermentation is a clear example of this.
As the name suggests, we are talking about a type of fermentation. Some would go so far as to say, a “conversion” of sorts. It is a chemical reaction that follows the alcoholic one and which transforms malic acid into lactic acid thanks to the work of bacteria naturally present in the grpe must. These bacteria, called lactic acid bacteria precisely because they are responsible for the formation of lactic acid, produce aromatic compounds that are able to enrich the organoleptic profile of the wine, giving it spiciness, softness and as a result greater complexity.
The transformation of acids also has a fundamental function – malic acid is perceived as sour to the taste. Lactic acid, on the other hand, takes on more delicate connotations, helping to make wines balanced and smooth, with less pungent aromas and a more delicate flavor. As we said, lactic bacteria are also able to modify the organoleptic characteristics of wine, acting on the aromatic profile. It will be up to the skill and experience of the winemaker to ensure that these transformations do not materialize into negative characteristics in reaching a desired final product and, consequently, giving persistence, body and finesse to the wine. Initially dedicated only to red wines, this type of fermentation has gradually made its way even in white wines, especially those destined not to be opened immediately.
Farnito Cabernet Sauvignon is an example taken from our cellars. It is a full-bodied wine with very solid structure, where malolactic fermentation contributes to making it more intense and persistent, with complex hints of spices, licorice, vanilla, cocoa, coffee, cherry. This wine has a triumph of aromas that is recalled by the soft and warm flavor and by the great balance that this wine expresses since its very first years of life. The full and rich flavor blends perfectly with its elegance, giving us a wine without harshness and one of considerable organoleptic depth.