Racking wine is the process of separating the clear juice from sediment. This is how we clarify our wines without using animal products, chemicals, or filters. It also provides Curt (Winemaker) with an up close and personal chance to see, smell, and taste our wines as they evolve. The process involves moving the wine from the barrel into a tank, cleaning the barrel of sediment, and returning the wine to the barrel. The barrel is then topped off with additional wine to ensure minimal oxygen is left. Wine is lost through racking with the sediment but also, in the time between racking, moisture is lost through the barrel pores. This is called transpiration.
While it is painful to lose wine to the “angels share,” the benefit is making full bodied, concentrated wines. We hope you agree! Every winemaker has their own philosophy about racking but at LDV Winery, each barreled red wine is racked about 6 times per year. It is labor intensive and makes for some long days, but we feel it provides our Chiricahua Mountain fruit the best chance to express its unique characteristics.
Learn more racking in this short video.