This fermentation technique is the oldest and still the most widespread method for making red wine. Usually, destemming takes place first to separate the berries from the grape skeletons. The berries are crushed so that their juice can escape. In southern countries, stomping with bare feet is still common to break up the berries in a gentle way. This juice-fruit pulp mixture is called mash. The question of pure or spontaneous fermentation plays a much lesser role than with white wine, since considerably more vineyard yeasts enter the mash with the skins. This means that a good fermentation process (fully fermented) is also possible using natural yeasts. Today's trend is to achieve a wine rich in colour with tannins that are as harmonious as possible.
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Diplom-Sommelier, Weinakademiker und Weinberater, Volders (Österreich)