Experts at UC Davis discuss wild or native fermentation, other yeast issues

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You can definitely fill a tank with must or juice, cross your fingers and hope the “native” yeast produce a successful fermentation that expresses true vineyard terroir and varietal characteristics. But if you’re not careful—and don’t know what’s really going on in the vineyard—your fermentation could instead by marred by Pediococcus and acetic acid bacteria, and the Saccharomyces cerevisiae could stall out without finishing the job.  At a winemaking session held recently at the University of California, Davis, yeast expert Dr. Linda Bisson provided an outline of the key factors that ensure a successful native fermentation. She said such fermentations are defined by relying on the microbial flora of grapes and wineries to conduct fermentation without any deliberate inoculation of commercial strains. The day also included a few sessions and tastings exploring the relatively new process of flash détente, in which grapes are heated and run through a vacuum chamber to remove unwanted flavor compounds and achieve specific stylistic goals. (For more on those sessions visit the MOG blog.)

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Randox Food Diagnostics offer analysis kits for the monitoring of wine fermentation.

Gary Smith

Marketing Team

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