Flash-Détente at Lodi Vineyards

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Our Tanks in the vineyards

We use a method called Flash-Détente Process. We use this in combination of ways. Flash skins are fermented in concrete tanks that have been in production for over 75 years and Flash juice fermented in Oak Barrels. Flash-Détente is a process involves a combination of heating the grapes to about 180ºF and then sending them into a huge vacuum chamber, where they are cooled. The cells of the grape skins are burst from the inside—the audible pop, pop, pop—allowing for better extraction of anthocyanins and skin tannins. Because this takes place before any alcoholic fermentation, the more bitter tannins, particularly seed tannins, aren’t extracted. (Because the seeds don’t contain water, they don’t explode.)

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Crush Facilities

Flash Détente, which translates roughly as “instant relaxation,” also creates steam that goes into a condenser, and the condensate is loaded with pyrazines and other aromatic compounds. Because vapor has been removed, the sugar level is increased in the remaining must. The winemaker can work with the higher Brix level, add back the condensate, discard the condensate and add water or a combination.