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Vinification of Shiraz

Shiraz is known to produce wines with ample fruit and tannins that ensure good maturation potential.

From approximately 22/23° B sugar accumulates rapidly and care has to be taken to monitor grapes regularly to harvest with the style and end result in mind.

As said earlier, viticultural practices play a major role in determining the eventual style of wine. However the various techniques a producer can employ in the cellar also have a huge impact on the style of wine.

The following is a broad spectrum of styles:

Use of Oak

Winemakers use a wide variety of techniques when utilising oak in the production and maturation of Shiraz.

Three kinds of oak play an important role in winemaking:

Traditionally European oak of origin, predominantly French, have been used by winemakers with American oak gaining more and more ground and Hungarian oak offering a less expensive, good quality alternative. Substitutes in the form of staves, chips, barrel inserts etc. offer the winemaker considerable savings over new barrels.

Aspects that play an important role in the influence of wood on the wine are e.g. the type of wood used, manufacturing techniques and size and age of the barrel. Of course the period of time the wine is aged and the character of a specific vintage will also play a role while wine-making techniques are equally important.

Flavours derived from oak include:

Various levels of toasting are available and light toast, medium toast and heavy toast are terms normally used but nowadays cooperages toast to the customer’s specifications.

Flavours derived from toasting include:

Shiraz in the Cellar