Chardonnay batonnage demonstration video: winemaking in action
By Lisa Mattson
November 22, 2011
Have you ever wanted to see what happens inside a wine barrel? You’re not alone. Last summer, we created a special see-through wine barrel and placed it in the winery’s barrel room, so Tour & Tasting guests could get an inside look at the old-world winemaking art of batonnage. I worked with one of our local cooperages to create Jordan’s first demonstration barrel, available for viewing during our 3 p.m. private trade tours from October through April, when our youngest vintage of Chardonnay is aging in barrel.
What is the definition of batonnage? Batonnage, or stirring of the lees, is practiced judiciously for every vintage of Jordan Chardonnay. By hand-stirring the lees, we release compounds from the dying yeast cells into the wine, which contribute to a creamy, smoother mouthfeel. These compounds help to integrate the oak flavors into the wine and soften the oak tannins.