The temperature is essential
After being pressed and pumped into the stainless steel vats the juice for our whites and rosé wines are initially cooled down to 12 degrees to help the must settle and do a cold precipitation. After a few days we rack the wines to a new clean tank separate them from the dirt now safely resting at the bottom of the tanks (this is called "Racking"). This is done in order to prevent potential off-flavours to form.
Then we let the whites and rosé wines ferment at around 16-19 degrees and the reds at 24-27 degrees for about 15 days.
During this period we monitor the vats on a daily basis and check how the fermentation is coming along.
The grapes for the red wines are pumped directly into the vats after destemming and crushing and slowly allowed to start fermenting on the skins by raising the temperature. During the fermentation of the reds we work with both pump-overs and punch downs (this is also called "pigeage") to extract the perfect amount of color, tannin and aroma compounds from the skins.
After the fermentation is over we press the skins off the reds and return the now clear red wine to the tanks.
Mother Nature decides
However, we’re dealing with Mother Nature here so if a given wine in a given year decides to go a bit slower or faster, we trust that it knows best itself and don’t try to oppose too much.
Note that we use cultured yeast in order to ensure a picture-perfect fermentation. Natural yeast is present in our vineyards, but we are still not familiar with which strains, so use some very specific cultured yeasts in order to be able to control the fermentation process 100% and ensure that we end up with exactly the wines we want.
Malolactic fermentation (or simply "malo")
Then comes the malolactic fermentation. This is a beautiful love affair between the wine and some friendly lactic bacteria that produce an enzyme that changes the harsh, malic acidy into a softer lactic acidity and thus makes the wines taste smoother and rounder. This is done in the steel tanks at Binivista for two reasons. One is that we much easier can control the temperature in the steel tanks rather than in oak barrels often used for the malo. (The friendly bacterias needs cozy warm surroundings to thrive).
Secondly; the steel vats are also much easier to clean. This is super important, as we need to be 100% sure the bacteria is gone before using the same tank for new freshly pressed juice the next harvest. We do the malolactic fermentation for all wines, except our fresh and vibrant whites that we wish to maintain as much nerve as possible.