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Carbo: Food for Thought

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Higher Ed

Carbo: Food for Thought

This is the second in a two part series. To recap:

The carbonic maceration fermentation technique consists of this: whole cluster grapes, plunked in a closed container, pumped with carbon dioxide, provoking an enzymatic fermentation inside the berry. While derived from a traditional whole cluster fermentation, the modern version was born in the 1930s. This modern carbo burst on the scene in the nineties, done at cold temperatures and even with dry ice addition. The result? Easy wines with low tannin, low acid and high fragrance. No brainers. But controversial. The question is raised, what’s so natural about pumping in carbon dioxide or layering on dry ice? And then what about terroir obstruction? As they say, in a blind tasting of a wine made with cold carbonic maceration, best case scenario is that you can guess grape and vintage. Usual scenario is that you can guess carbonic maceration.