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TechTalk: Improving Pinot Noir using a Microwave

Posted: Saturday 21 September 2013 11:26

TechTalk: Improving Pinot Noir using a Microwave

Saturday 21: A Burgundy producer would be appalled and a Pinot Noir connoisseur would abhor the very thought but a wine researcher from Tasmania doing the laboratory trials is the first to claim that using a microwave may improve the quality of a Pinot Noir though only commercial trials planned in a few years might be able to establish her claims

Anna Carew, a wine researcher from the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture in Australia, has been doing laboratory trials using a domestic microwave to loosen the cells of crushed grapes from the inside, noting that French wine makers have used fire to extract colour from grapes for centuries.

Dr Carew says the technique results in a fuller flavoured wine with a richer colour and more tannins. "I guess that some wine makers would find it is quite counter to traditional wine making practices so it is not really for those people who like to make wine in a very traditional way," she said."But for the winemakers who are interested in innovation, they have been really excited by it."

She has reportedly told ABC News that a microwave loosens the cells of the crushed grapes from the inside, resulting in a fuller flavored wine with more tannins, the things that give wine its distinctive taste. Carew asserts that her technique is a whole lot more complex than just popping the wine in the microwave for a few minutes, but she does not want to reveal her exact methods yet. But she's hoping to continue her tests and start commercial trials in the next few years. She is now seeking funding to conduct the trials commercially.

As may be expected, there was initial scepticism from wine makers. But Brett McClen, a viticulturist at Brown Brothers says it is being watched closely by the industry, according to a report. "It may not change anything overnight, but I think in the medium term it will," he said.

Tags: Pinot Noir, Anna Carew, Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture

       

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