January 4, 2024 by
Maytte Rivera

Pomace is the remains of skins, pulp, seeds, and stems that are left over after the juice has been pressed off the grapes. In ancient Greece and Rome, this mixture was pressed twice to produce wine for the upper class, then water was added, the mix was re-fermented, and the wine was pressed for a third time.  This thin, low alcohol wine was given to slaves and common workers.  Nowadays, this by-product of winemaking is used as fertilizer, to produce natural food coloring, to create renewable energy, and to produce distilled spirits, among others.

The most well-known distilled spirit made with pomace is “pomace brandy”, produced in almost all the winemaking countries.  Known as marc in France, grappa in Italy, and orujo in Spain, it is made by re-fermenting the pomace and separating the alcohol from the water with the process of distillation.  The final product has around 30%-50% alcohol. Bodegas Pazo Pondal in Galicia produces several orujos including some that are macerated with herbs, fruits, and coffee. The are great with chocolate desserts or as an after-dinner treat.

Author: Maytte Rivera

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