Just a short post…when I sulfured and added the Xoakers last week, I ended up with 2 half bottles of 2012 Turtle Vines Pinot noir, and a little to taste for the winemaker. You will notice the beautiful color and I hope you can see the glass corks on top. It tastes great, but of course I’m a little prejudice. Can’t wait until it ages more and the oak flavor is incorporated.
We made our selection of Xoakers for our Oak Adjunct (oak flavoring for our Flextank) last week. We visited their location in Windsor and purchased 2 pounds of the little oaks balls. They recommend 1-2 balls per gallon of wine for 4-9 months…so since we don’t want a lot of oak flavor, we are adding 1 per gallon. The tricky part…how to get them out when we have the correct flavor. Joanne is a wonderful seamstress so she sewed small bags in food grade cloth provided by the vendor. When we have the flavor we are looking for we can fish them out and let it flavors continue to age until we are ready to bottle late this year or early next year.
Next year, these little balls will be put in the wine right after primary fermentation as this should enhance the flavor even more.
We started soaking the samples from Innerstave and Xtraoak on January 29th in Vodka. After about a week we decided that we need more “flavor” so we doubled the amount of toasted oak in each sample bottle. Last night we had our friends, John and Chris Mason from EMTU vineyard over for dinner and we did a smell/taste test to determine which oak adjunct to use. The winner was the Xoaker balls from Xtraoak in Medium Plus toast. The flavor from both vendors in the “Plus” toast was much nicer than the medium…a spicy vanilla flavor. We will pick some of this up on Thursday and get it into the barrel when we do our next sulfur run.