All grapes are handpicked during the early morning hours and then cooled overnight in a temperature-controlled room at 5 °C. Most (85%) of these grapes are then crushed and destemmed, whilst the remaining 15% is fermented as a whole cluster. This is followed by a three-day cold soak at 9 °C, covered with a CO2 blanket. Natural fermentation takes place in both open fermenters and closed stainless steel tanks. Extraction is obtained by regular pump-overs and punch – downs. After fermentation is completed, the wine is left on the skins for another 14 days and then pressed to 20% new Allier French oak barrels. The pressed section is kept separate. Malolactic bacteria are inoculated and malolactic fermentation is completed in the barrel. The wine is then racked from the lees and given a low dose of sulphur. The wine spends a total of 16 months in the barrel before it is blended and bottled.
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