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barrel aging

Sauvignon Blanc/Fumé Blanc

by David on January 5, 2011

Are they the same thing? Yup – pretty much. Sauvignon Blanc is the grape; Fumé Blanc is a marketing name that was made up by Robert Mondavi to sell Sauvignon Blanc at a time when it wasn’t popular. Others adopted it. He got the idea for the name from the French Sauvignon Blanc of the Loire Valley in […]


Barrel Aging: It’s Not Just for Oak Flavor!

by David on December 27, 2010

In fact, it wasn’t until around the 1960s that oak flavor became important! Some time after that we began to see the first references to “new French oak”. And, of course, now there’s so much focus on oak flavor these days that it’s easy to forget the main reason we still use barrels: Aging! The […]


Sur Lie Aging

by David on December 23, 2010

Our 2010 Chardonnay is currently aging “sur lie”. Sir who? The term is French and refers to aging the wine on the  spent yeast cells and grape solids, the lees. Sur lie translates to “on the lees”. If you read a winemaking textbook, it advises the winemaker to move the new wine off of the dead […]


This brief video shows how a wine barrel is assembled from start to finish. It’s a craft that hasn’t changed much in over 2000 years (oh, they have a few power tools now that they didn’t have then). For more detailed information go to our articles for The Ancient Craft of Barrel Building or To Oak or […]


Aging the Wine “Sur Lie”

by David on January 7, 2010

In this 2-minute video winemaker Geoff Gorsuch of Goosecross Cellars of the Napa Valley does a show and tell on why we age our Chardonnay “sur lie” and stir the lees weekly. Enjoy! More videos Subscribe