Cold Maceration

March 11, 2024 by
Maytte Rivera

Cold maceration is a step of the winemaking process where the grape must is cooled quickly to about 50F before alcoholic fermentation.  This optional step happens after the fruit is harvested and crushed, and the mixture of juice, skins, seeds, and pulp is allowed to rest at low temperature for up to 10 days to extract color and aromatic compounds.  Since tannins are more soluble in alcohol, this process is not done to extract them but to increase the complexity of flavors and aromas.  One of our partner wineries that employs cold maceration in their red wines is Clos Pegase in Napa Valley, California.  They allow their Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon juices to lay for about 4 days before starting fermentation.

Author: Maytte Rivera

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