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LOCATION IS EVERYTHING & SOIL IS KING

How wine is made

1

Growing

Location matters a great deal when it comes to winegrowing. The climate, elevation, sun exposure and drainage of a plot of land are all relevant factors. The hands that care for the vines are equally as important.  Tasks such as shaping the canopy, dropping fruit, and turning irrigation valves are a few among many weekly requirements.

2

Harvesting

Months of vineyard care culminate with the harvest decision and the transformation of grapes to wine begins.

3

Sorting

The cellar crew’s first task after harvest is separating the grapes from MOG (material other than grapes). They must meet the winemaker’s demand for ripe berries – nothing green, nothing shriveled, nothing damaged.

4

Fermenting

After sorting and crushing the grapes, the controlled transformation, or fermentation, of juice to wine begins.  A great winemaker’s goal is to tell the story of where wines come from and seamlessly bottle them as the purest expression of the soil and environment in which they were grown.

5

Aging

After fermentation, the barrel aging process begins with a variety of French oak barrels.  Barrels are made with several different characteristics, such as the size and shape of the barrel, shape of the individual staves used to create the barrel, and the amount of the “toast” level inside.  These important characteristics impact the final flavor profile of the wine.   

6

Blending

The final process before bottling is blending trials.  Blending is the mixing of wine from different vineyard blocks to achieve the right balance of approachability and ageability.

Caves are cool

Caves naturally provide both high humidity and cool temperatures. While a 60-gallon barrel stored in an above ground warehouse loses four gallons to evaporation each year, a barrel stored underground loses just a quarter of that. A constant temperature between 55° and 60° is also necessary for wines to age well.  Wine cave temperatures naturally fall right into this zone.

Tour the Caves

A boatload of water

Happily, we are among the first wineries to pipe in reclaimed water from Napa Valley’s recycled water project.  Wastewater is treated through a series of processes including settling, oxidation, clarification, coagulation, filtration and disinfection.  It is then pumped back out to customers through dedicated pipelines.  Anything we would use to irrigate our vines has to meet strict standards, not just for clarity but also salinity and toxicity.

The benefits of using recycled water are twofold:  we help preserve the amount of potable water for human consumption, and we limit the discharge of treated wastewater into the bay.

The water we use to irrigate our vines during the growing season and clean our equipment is equal to the water from 100 swimming pools.

Going solar

Operating a winery requires power.  We installed our solar array as an investment in sustainability. 

By generating almost 100 kilowatts of electricity, roughly what we use in a year, the solar array keeps 100 tons of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. Over the system’s 50-year working life, it will produce 6 million kilowatts of energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 5,000 tons, which is the equivalent of 5 million miles of driving.

GOING SOLAR OFFSETS 5 MILLION MILES OF DRIVING

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