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Chardonnay question

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Bob Henrick

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Chardonnay question

by Bob Henrick » Sun Apr 02, 2006 4:45 pm

Can anyone tell me what is gained by not filtering chardonnay. I remember a 1998 DeRose vineyard chardonnay that Milan Maximovich made at Thunder Mountain. Nice chardonnay, but it didn't age as well as I thought it might have had it been filtered and a bit cleaner. I have a case now of 2002 Travis chardonnay that likewise has not been filtered. both wines presented a cloudy appearence and the TM really showed quite a lot of fine powder like sediment. Haven't seen this yet in the Travis, but it sure is cloudy.
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Re: Chardonnay question

by Rahsaan » Sun Apr 02, 2006 4:57 pm

Bob Henrick wrote:Can anyone tell me what is gained by not filtering chardonnay.


I always thought the general argument for non-filtration is that it preserves the depth and richness of the chemical compounds in the wine, giving it "soul" but also potentially making it "unstable".

I don't see why that would vary according to grape, but then I'm not a chemist. Or a winemaker.

Do you see this as an issue of specific grape varieties?
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Re: Chardonnay question

by Bob Henrick » Sun Apr 02, 2006 5:56 pm

Rahsaan wrote:
Bob Henrick wrote:Can anyone tell me what is gained by not filtering chardonnay.


I always thought the general argument for non-filtration is that it preserves the depth and richness of the chemical compounds in the wine, giving it "soul" but also potentially making it "unstable".

I don't see why that would vary according to grape, but then I'm not a chemist. Or a winemaker.

Do you see this as an issue of specific grape varieties?


I guess I don't see it that way Rahsaan, but it is so strange to have a chardonnay throw sediment of any kind. at least for now I can go either way. IMO the cloudy look detracts only in an appearence way and not in the mouth at all. Plus the fact that one expects reds to throw some sediment
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Re: Chardonnay question

by Rahsaan » Sun Apr 02, 2006 7:34 pm

Bob Henrick wrote:IMO the cloudy look detracts only in an appearence way and not in the mouth at all. Plus the fact that one expects reds to throw some sediment


Aha, appearance, personally I think unfiltered wines look beautiful because of the "pure" color and texture visible to the eye.

But, even assuming you don't like the appearance, it's only for chardonnay and not other whites?
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Re: Chardonnay question

by Bob Henrick » Sun Apr 02, 2006 9:40 pm

John D. Zuccarino wrote:Hello Bob,

When one filters out solid particles you tend to rob the wine of it's complexity and believe it or not it's capacity to age. The fine line is to me to filter with a more porous filter that leaves some solid fruit cells and still accomplish not having the wine re ferment or to be to cloudy.


John, I am sure that your answer is the right one. I would never argue for filtering to a point of stripping the wine of it's character. OTOH, I am not sure that a cloudy wine, whether it drops sediment or not, is a good thing. I especially think this of a white wine, but yes I include reds too.
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Cloudiness revisted

by Bob Henrick » Mon Apr 03, 2006 11:14 pm

I revisited the Travis chardonnay I opened yestersay and I notice that the cloudiness disappeared when the wine warmed in the glass. in fact it went away entirely as the wine approached room temp. The Travis never threw sediment as the TM DeRose did a few years ago so I didn't have to waste the last two inches or so,
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Re: Cloudiness revisted

by Jenise » Tue Apr 04, 2006 1:26 pm

Bob Henrick wrote:I revisited the Travis chardonnay I opened yestersay and I notice that the cloudiness disappeared when the wine warmed in the glass. in fact it went away entirely as the wine approached room temp. The Travis never threw sediment as the TM DeRose did a few years ago so I didn't have to waste the last two inches or so,


Is the Travis a California wine, Bob? New name to me.
My wine shopping and I have never had a problem. Just a perpetual race between the bankruptcy court and Hell.--Rogov
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Re: Chardonnay question

by Bob Henrick » Tue Apr 04, 2006 10:12 pm

"Is the Travis a California wine, Bob? New name to me."

Jenise, the Travis has been around for quite some time now and is from Montery County. It seems to have been able to lose some of the tropical fruit flavors that IMO has hindered Monterey chards for so long.
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