Well. In less than one week, everyone in the world will buy some Beaujolais Nouveau. And, because the event is becoming closer and closer, a lot of people are talking about it on social networks.
We wanted to answer some questions people can have in their mind. We wanted to answer some questions people can never ask to professionnals because they don’t have the time to answer it.
Today, we are going to explain you the secrets of Beaujolais Nouveau’s making.
First, I apologise if I do some mistakes. I have learnt English and this is not my born language. I am from Beaujolais and I grew in a winemakers’ family.
I wanted to modify the French infography I drew in September but I can’t find the photoshop version. Then, I added purple number and letters to explain you, here, in English.
I really hope it will be clear enough for everyone. If you have some more questions, please ask us : we can answer about everything about Beaujolais Nouveau, or others wines of Beaujolais.
1 – Step 1 : harvest and sorting. We don’t like leaves and rotten grapes. Someone is on the trailor and pull off what’s not good for the wine.
2 – Step 2 : the grapes are going in the tanks through a conveyor belt. We can continue to sort what we have not seen on the trailor.
3 : The name of the grapes we are using in Beaujolais is : Gamay noir à jus blanc. The grapes are black but the juice is white.
A : Traditionnal method of Beaujolais Nouveau’s making when the grapes are perfect.
B : Heating up grapes and warm maceration when the grapes are not top-quality.
4A – Step 4A : The grapes are just in the tank. There is some juice who appears in the bottom of the tanks because of the weight of the grapes above. This juice is driven at the top again. We add SO2 (3 to 6g/hundred liters). These is very few proportion.
4B – Step 4B : The grapes are just in the tank. We heat the grapes and juice up to 72°C. The juice goes through a pipe who is going through a very hot pipeline. This allows to extract a nice color and to have some nice tastes and a lovely smell. The heating up can last 8 hours and we must look after it because of the risk of explosion.
5A – 12 hours after the arrival in the tank : the maceration has started. What is maceration ? The sugar is transformed into alcohol. There is foam above the grapes and the tank has a very strong flavour of CO2 gas, which is produced while the maceration.We use the juice in the bottom to heat up the temperature of the grapes (24°C).
5B – 12 hours after the arrival in the tank : the maceration can start when the grapes are less than 37°C. Under 37°C, we have to add yiest because everything is destroyed while the heating up. We need to cool down the grapes until 24°C and put the juice from the bottom to the top of the tank, to oxygenate the grapes.
6A – 1 day after the arrival in the tank : maceration is continuing. We must take the juice from the bottom of the tank to the top. This allow to oxygenate the grapes and maceration needs oxgen.
6 B – 1 day after the arrival in the tank : We must control the temperature (between 28/30°C). If not, the maceration can have a very bad reaction. The maceration just started a few hours ago and the tank has a strong flavour of CO2 and some foam appears above the grapes.
7A – day 2, same as step 6A
8A – day 3 : if necessary (and only if), we must add sugar. If there is not enough sugar in the juice (bad weather just before the picking), maceration can not be completed. Sugar maximum allowed : 27g/liter.
7B : day 2 to day 4 : same as step 6B.
9 : the pressing time (between day 4 and 6 for traditionnal method and day 4 for the heating up’s method).
We first have to empty out the juice to put in another tank. Then, we open the door of the tank and the grapes go in the press through a machine and a pipe. Then, we press the grapes and their is another sort of alcoholic juice. This juice is called « Paradis » (Heaven) because it is very sweet.
The two kind of alcoholic juices are mixed and then, start the last maceration. Some kinds of acids are going to transform the juice in wine. After this second maceration called « malo-lactique », the juice becomes wine. Not before.
This is how we are making Beaujolais Nouveau’s wine !
Would you imagine that ?