Life starts in the vineyards …
Geographical and climate conditions in Armenia are exceptional for vine growing. It gives us the opportunity to grow vines in high altitude (from 1000 up to 1500 meters above sea level), thus create authentic wines. Volcanic soils, harsh climate and high altitude create an interesting union of the terroir’s elements.
Harvest starts in August for grapes of “future bubbles” and lasts up to the end of October for Black Areni. All grapes are hand-harvested, according to their maturity period. Grapes are hand-selected in the vineyards first, then they pass a second selection on vibrating tables.
A Delta Oscillys (Bucher Vaslin) destemmer is used for the destemming process. It uses an ample swinging motion of the one or two cages to separate the grapes from the stems by inertia.Thanks to the inertia effect, there are many advantages: preserved integrity of the berries, preserved
state of the stems (no break, no grinding up), fully separation of the grapes from the stems, elimination of shot berries, verjus, dry grapes, unripen grapes which remains on the stems. A third visual selection of berries is carried out after destemming of the grapes on the vibrating table.
LIFE GOES ON IN CELLARS…
Alcoholic fermentation lasts for around 14 days in temperature controlled tanks. Malolactic fermentation occurs in barrels or tanks. The cellar and tanks are designed with the approach of minimizing wine manipulations by using gravity benefits where it is possible.
Our wines undergo the aging process in Armenian and French oak barrels stored in the “treasury” of our winery – the aging cellar. The cellar is digged down 6.5 m into igneous rock- basalt.
After the gentle destemming red grapes are placed in temperature controlled tanks for fermentation. White grapes are placed in the pneumatic press for juice extraction under controlled atmosphere. The innovating
process of pressing under controlled atmosphere guarantees 100% of the pressed juices extracted without oxidation. According to the grape variety and origin, grapes are vinified separately, leaving the creative process of assemblages to the winemaker.
The bottling process is organized through the high-end bottling line designed by Bertolaso Company, allowing to bottle still and sparkling wines in the best possible conditions. Having its own laboratory we have the complete set of resources to ensure quality control throughout the entire production process.
Our sparkling wine is made using the “Charmat” method (or Metodo Martinotti) which was first applied in French city of Montpellier, in 1907.
Practices of making sparkling wine have many similarities to the production of still wine with some differences. At the vineyard, grapes are harvested early (for instance August 20th) when there is still high acid level. The primary fermentation of sparkling wine begins like most other wines. It is through the initiation of a secondary fermentation that distinguishes sparkling wine production and gives the wine its characteristic “bubbles”.
After the first fermentation, the base wines are placed in pressure tanks and a mixture of yeast and sugar is added to induce the second fermentation. As the tank is sealed, the CO2 produced during the second fermentation cannot escape and is trapped in the wine. In other words, the wine undergoes secondary fermentation in stainless steel tanks rather than in individual bottles , and is bottled under pressure in a continuous process.