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Smooth Harvest Provides Freedom for Winemakers’ Craft to Shine

The 2018 grape harvest began a few weeks later than in past years on the North Coast, but with almost everything in, growers are reporting increased yields of high-quality grapes. The longer hangtimes without heat spikes or wet weather complications appear to have resulted in a very even ripening with a good balance between sugar, acid, and tannins.

“With a relatively smooth and steady harvest like 2018, winemakers will have a wide range of options regarding the picking time and intended wine profiles,” says Laurent Fargeton, Head of Cellar & Oak Solutions at Vivelys/Boisé. “This opens the door to endless combinations of chips and staves to be used depending on the goals of the final style to be achieved.”

Vivelys is known for their expertise in precision oenology and the interaction between oak and wine. For more than 20 years Vivelys has specialized in producing oak barrel alternatives that deliver consistent results within specifically targeted flavor profiles. They have undertaken groundbreaking research to analyze and identify the oak compounds that impact wine profiles.

In years with difficult harvests Vivelys’ products provide control of the consistency and flavor profile of their customers’ brands, but in good years they can help wineries reach the highest expression of their wine style.

At the Unified Wine & Grape Symposium in Sacramento this year, they introduced the expansion of the Boisé® oak chip line with the Boisé® Inspiration line of 100% French oak staves. These two new Boisé Inspiration 7mm staves, #07.1 and #07.5, were created with two distinct profiles that reflect the demands for maturity and fruit balance on the palate seen in the U.S. market, and based on the same research and selection process that guarantees consistent results.

The Boisé Inspiration stave #07.1 provides a sweet profile in the mouth with roundness and intense vanilla notes, while the #07.5 has a more smoky profile with a very good persistence in the mouth.

“We have obtained excellent results with the #07.1 in Bordeaux and Chile, with wine profiles where the vegetal notes were a little too dominant. The result is stunning with more fruit and sweetness on the palate,” says Fargeton. “The #07.5 matches better with a ripe fruit profile. This is what we have seen with Grenache from Languedoc and Spain, or Malbec from Argentina. Many of our customers have also experienced the mixing of the two references designing their own wine style. In the U.S. market, many ongoing trials have been very successful.”

Vivelys plans to extend the Inspiration stave range with additional products that expand the winemakers’ options for designing their desired wine profiles, and several new products are already in production to be released to the U.S. market.

“With the success and customer feedback, we’ve learned that there is a market opportunity for a third reference of 7mm staves, called #07.3, which will provide caramel and spicy notes and as always, a lot of roundness in the mouth,” explains Fargeton.

Vivelys will also be introducing to the U.S. market their first two references of thicker staves in January.

Vivelys will be displaying their new stave #07.3 at WIN Expo at their U.S. distributor G3’s Booth #213 on Thursday December 6th, 2018 at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds in Santa Rosa, CA. For more information or samples, please contact G3 Enterprises, call 1800.321.8747, or email G3.Info@G3enterprises.com.

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