By Kori ~ March 6th, 2010.
This week’s Wine Word of the Week is carbonic maceration.
Official definition from Jancis Robinson’s The Oxford Companion to Wine:
Carbonic maceration is a red wine-making process which transforms a small amount of sugar in grapes which are uncrushed into ethanol, without the intervention of yeasts. It is used typically to produce light-bodied, brightly coloured, fruity red wines for early consumption, most famously but by no means exclusively in the Beaujolais region of France.
Layman’s terms from Kori:
Carbonic maceration, also known as whole-berry fermentation, is the process that places whole grape clusters in an oxygen-free environment to break down the grape sugars to create alcohol without adding yeast.
Filed under: Wine Word of the Week