Adding water to wine remains industry taboo

Wednesday, 24 November, 2004
Wine Network
Water? Into wine? That’s heresy, as far as most wine lovers are concerned. The idea of pouring a few buckets of water into a steel fermentation tank smacks of watering down, stretching and cheapening wine. Actually, in California it’s been done for decades.

Wente is shattering the silence, he says, because "watering back" - adding water during fermentation - can be an important tool for improving California wines. It's a way to make more elegant wines, he says, and sometimes it is the way to turn a good wine into a great wine. And if more vintners would talk about it, he figures, the practice would gain public understanding and acceptance.

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