Adventures in Winemaking

Inside the Winery

As Assistant Winemaker to chief Winemaker, Linda McWilliams at San Pasqual Winery, we are pleased to announce the release of a few of our outstanding wines. One of my favorites is the 2009 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. This wine was quite a challenge for us during fermentation. Linda and I stopped by the winery after class late one night to find that the fermentation was up to 99 degrees; too hot.

High temperatures like this will kill the yeast and stop fermentation. Linda and I were faced with the situation of needing to bring the temperature down without adding water to the Must. Looking around the winery, I noticed that we had shrink wrap. From there we bought blocks of ice, encased them in the shrink wrap, sterilized them, and added them to the Must, introducing them into the macro bin of fermenting wine. This tactic was successful in lowering the temperature, allowing the wine to complete its fermentation.

We just released this vintage. This Cabernet Sauvignon has a rich and full bodied flavor, low in tannin. This is an excellently balanced wine; though hot due to an alcohol content of 15.4%. This does not take away from the taste. Currently this is my favorite among our wines.

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