About Me

Gavin Hubble - (BSc & Post Grad. Business Marketing) - I started working in the wine industry over 23 years ago in New Zealand. Working in; wine retail, sales, wine production, label & packaging design, marketing, wine buying, consulting and wine education. I am responsible for the Brand Health of 60+ wine brands distributed here in New Zealand. Wine Brands from New Zealand, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Chile and Argentina. I work closely with the Trade Industry - (Retail Stores & Restaurants) introducing, educating and positioning exciting and unique brands to wine enthusiasts all over the world.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Blending wine...

Blending wine can be as simple as taking two separate wines (i.e. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot) and mixing them together - right through to complicating things and taking multiple varietals from multiple vineyards and even multiple regions and blending them to make a new wine with a unique personality and flavour experience. It takes a lot of experience and a very refined palate to successfully blend wines for today's wine markets. A winemaker may blend wines for a variety of reasons: to adjust pH, acidity, residual sugar, alcohol levels, tannin content or to improve colour, aroma or flavour. As well as understanding all of the differences that exist from more than one vineyard, differences that develop from one fermentation tank to the next, different tannin levels between barrels, etc.
Wines, like Chateauneuf de Pape and Champagne, can be made from a blend of red and white grapes. Also Rose Champagne is often given its' pink colour, from the addition of red wine (Pinot Noir).

Other wines, like Bordeaux are blends of the same grape colour. In the case of Bordeaux, the grape varieties Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet-Franc and Petit Verdot are blended, in order to add the character of each grape to the final wine.
Even wines of a single variety are (can be) blended. In this case, wines that have been vinified separately (referred to as lots, batches, parcels etc...) are blended together. This blending may come about in order to create a specific style of wine unique to that vintage. At the highest quality level, individual vineyards are vinified separately, each adding their own character to the final blend.
Blending to make a Non-Vintage Champagne, the winemaker will taste all the different lots of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier to figure out what to blend together to make / keep the house style (their unique Champagne style year after year) consistent.
When blending - you are trying to achieve a result where the final blend should be great than the individual parts.

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