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Noisy Water Winery

Hannah Perry
August 18, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


A Journey To The Bottle


Now that harvest is underway, we are beginning the journey to the bottle. White grapes are harvested before red grapes, but grapes that will be used to make sparkling wine are harvested before anything, because of the lower sugar requirement. Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc are up next while Pinot Noir, Malbec and Merlot follow. Finally, the more robust red grapes like Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Sirah are last, as they have the highest Brix level, perfect for making bold red wines. 


Read More About The Journey




Not to be dramatic or anything but the process of turning grapes into wine is like poetry. It is a creative process that takes a lot of patience, knowledge, commitment and time. Here's what happens after harvest, and when we truly put the poetry to the test:

The Full Journey:

  1. The Press: This is when we squeeze the grape juice out. Once the grapes are pressed, the skins, seeds, and stems clump together into "cake", which can be returned to the vineyard soil as a fertilizer. White grapes are pressed right after harvest, but red grapes aren't pressed until after primary fermentation, which is the next step.
  2. Primary Fermentation: Now in juice form, we wait until the yeast converts the sugar in the grapes into alcohol. Red Wine is then pressed and pumped into barrels for aging, while white wine skips step 3 and begins the bottling process.
  3. Aging: During this period, months can pass before the wine is ready. This is also when malolactic fermentation occurs. The naturally occurring malic acid gets turned into lactic acid, giving wine that signature buttery, creamy or nutty mouthfeel.
  4. Racking & Bottling: When the aging comes to an end, we will start tasting the wine and making sure the final product is just right. Before bottling, the wine is racked, filtered, or both to remove sediment and clarify the wine. Then it is bottling time!



Time Posted: Aug 18, 2021 at 10:26 AM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
August 11, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


Finding The Perfect Brix


Brix is a common term used in wine making-so what does it mean? Brix is the measurement of sugar level in a fruit. Sugar plays a huge role in making yeast, which is what makes wine contain alcohol! The amount of sugar in the grapes determines how much alcohol will be in the wine so as you probably would guess, finding out the sugar levels of each variety of grape is one of the key factors that lets us know when it is time to harvest. The pH, skin color, fruit acids and seed ripeness are also factors we evaluate before harvesting!


Read More On Brix




The most common instrument to measure the degree of Brix is the refractometer. It's not as fancy as it sounds. You rub some grape juice onto the glass lens and see how much the sunlight beaming through the juice bends. The more the light bends, the higher the sugar content!

Hear it from the Winemaker



2019 Wild Ferment Old Vine Pinot Noir




2018 Petite Sirah





2018 Montepulciano



SUGAR: 23.5

ALCOHOL: 13.5%

2020 Alliance



ALCOHOL: 18.5%

2020 Forbidden Desert Sweet




2020 Malvasia Bianca



ALCOHOL: 12.5%

Time Posted: Aug 11, 2021 at 1:49 PM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
July 7, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


🍇 Port Wine: Here's The Scoop: 🍇


Port has been made for centuries dating back all the way to 1174! Traditionally port wine was made in Portugal’s Douro Valley when the English started sourcing their red wine in Portugal after they boycotted French wine in the 17th century. To help preserve the wine on their journey in giant ships back to England, the Englishmen added brandy to the red wine to fortify it and make sure it wouldn't spoil during the ship's journey. As a result, it accidentally made one of the world's most unique and diverse beverages. 


Read More On Port Wine 




And ports sure have one! You can identify a port wine for its higher alcohol content, its noticeable sweetness and full body and palate density.  If you love rich cheeses and sweet desserts, a port wine is for you! Its pairing versatility is through the roof and it can even function as a dessert by itself.


Pictured left: Portugal's Douro Valley



During fermentation, when the alcohol level of a wine reaches a certain point, it is fortified with brandy. This brings the fermentation process to a halt, preventing the grape sugar to convert into alcohol any further. The nuances of fruit in the young wine are captured in the process, leaving behind a port of its own uniqueness.



Time Posted: Jul 7, 2021 at 11:08 AM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
June 23, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


🍇 Oxygen: Wine's Best Friend & Worst Enemy🍇


Oxygen can make or break wine, so the winemaking process is tedious and requires constant attention and awareness. Oxygen is needed particularly during the fermentation process as yeast need it to survive! A by product of the fermentation process is CO2, and can actually become very dangerous during, as it can cause a person to fall unconscious if breathed in.


Read More On The Magic



Why oxygen is needed during fermentation: Yeast devours high levels of oxygen in order to do their wonderful job of taking sugar in the must (grape skins, seeds, and pulp) and making alcohol. Different yeast selections help the winemakers' achieve their desired flavors and aromas.



Too much oxygen is a bad thing:

After fermentation has finished and the yeast is no longer producing CO2, the wine is no longer protected from oxygen and it can begin to oxidize. Too much oxidation can ruin a wine and all of its bright and pretty nuances and could even turn it to vinegar!




White wines don’t want a lot of oxygen contact prior to fermentation because it can cause browning. So we use dry ice to blanket the juice in the tank and then start fermentation. Once fermentation is started, co2 blankets the juice and prevents browning. Some white wines come out darker due to the aging process, like oak aged Chardonnays.

For quality control purposes, we taste the wine on the job but begrudgingly have to spit it out as no one wants a boozy winemaker running forklifts or making their wine. 


Perfectly Crafted Wines Made With The Just The Right Amount of Oxygen

Time Posted: Jun 23, 2021 at 12:32 PM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
June 9, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


🍇 How Does Wine Get Its Color?🍇


The color is the first characteristic of wine that we notice, and the color can hint at what you might expect for its aroma, flavor and texture. But never judge a bottle by its appearance, because the wine color is not always indicative of the color of grape it is sourced from!


Read More on The Magic

Did you know that many white wines like
Champagne or Zinfandel are produced from red grapes? The color of wine is influenced by many factors. Here's a few:


When making white wine, the grapes are pressed and the skins of the grapes are immediately removed from contact with the grape juice. Whereas when making red wine, the skins are left in contact with the juice, naturally dying the juice a red/ purple/ garnet tint.

The intensity of the hue is determined by the amount of time the juice is left in contact with the skins, what time of year the grapes are grown and even the thickness of the grape skins!

The pigment of grapes, made of phenolic compounds, can express itself in a number of hues, depending on the specific type and the pH of the surrounding plant tissue. 

Climate can also influence the color of a grape! Soil that is high in calcium can produce thicker-skinned grapes, providing intense wine color hues and a sturdier structure to the grape.



How Many Hue's Do You Have In Your Wine Rack? Need to fill in the gaps?!

Start Here

Time Posted: Jun 9, 2021 at 10:13 AM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
June 2, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


🍇 Yeast: Why it's Essential to the Winemaking Process 🍇


Yeasts are single-celled fungal organisms. Without them, there would be no alcohol. Not wine, nor beer, or any spirits distilled from various fermented carbohydrates. Yeast converts sugars into alcohol, which creates carbon dioxide and heat. This is how the dough in bread rises, how malted grain turns into beer and grapes turns into wine.

So how does it work?


Yeast cells cozy up in warm temperatures and a sugary environment that’s not too acidic. Not too cold, nor too sour, but just right.  Apart from sugar, yeasts also need nutrients like nitrogen and vitamins. As long as these conditions are met, yeasts will ferment fresh grapes into delicious wine.


2019 Wild Ferment Old Vine Pinot Noir

Winemakers add yeast to most wines to emphasize aromas or flavors, but natural fermentation can also occur. That's exactly what occurred in the 2019 Wild Ferment Old Vine Pinot Noir! Left to its own devices, the crushed grapes will start to ferment due to natural yeasts present on grape skins and in the winery. This style of winemaking can be traced back to 400 years ago, making this bottle wise in its years. Notes of bright strawberry and blackberry are complimented with nuances of fig leaving you with a fruit forward satisfying finish.


More Dry Red Wine For The Season

2017 Sangiovese
$22.00   $18.00
Time Posted: Jun 2, 2021 at 9:11 AM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
May 19, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


🍇 Bung Holes: What they are and why we love em' 🍇


A bunghole is a hole bored into a barrel and capped with a large cork-like object called a ‘bung’.  It is essentially the hole which lets you get quick and easy access to the wine inside.


Fun Fact:


How do we know when it's time to retire a barrel? Well, we stick our nose in it! After a barrel has been emptied and cleaned our winemakers and crew smell all the barrels. It's a day full of smelling bungholes 😉


Jump Into Summer With Some of Our Favorite Barrel Aged Wines:

Time Posted: May 19, 2021 at 11:19 AM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
May 12, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


🍇Grafting Grape Vines🍇


Grafting is a propagation technique that allows us to alter the grape variety of the existing vines, which already have a developed root system, without uprooting and replanting the vines. This can be an economical way of changing a whole vineyard rather than re-planting. We start grafting vines before the bud begins to grow, so in late February for early varieties and early March for later varieties.


There are many grafting techniques that can be used. This one is called the cleft graft. It is for larger diameter vines and the scion must be dormant. There is a five step process for the cleft graft:

  1. Cut off the top of the vine about 30 minutes or so before grafting.
  2. Split the rootstock with a blade or chisel.
  3. Hold the split open and prepare the scions by cutting one end to a “v” shape.
  4. Place one scion on each side to fit with the cambium.
  5. Tape the split area together and use grafting compound to seal the splits to keep excess moisture out and seal moisture in.

Forbidden Desert Vineyard Varietals: 

Time Posted: May 12, 2021 at 11:44 AM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
May 5, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


🍇Pairing Wine With Cinco de Mayo Foods 🍇



Noisy Water Winery was founded in New Mexico, so our roots run deep within Mexican culture, as it is the most prominent heritage in our beloved border state. Today we celebrate the resilience, strength and unity of this heritage by sharing our favorite wine pairings with Cinco de Mayo inspired foods.



2019 Nuevo Verde
$27.00   $24.00

When making fish tacos, more likely than not, your fresh fish tacos are going to come dressed in a sauce or vegetables and herbs; for this, our 2019 Nuevo Verde balances the spicy flavors of the tacos with its spritzy and acidic flavor profile. 


When making carne asada or ground beef tacos, the 2017 Zinfandel's rich, fruit-forward palate and robust tannins pair gorgeously with the fat and spice of these darker meats.



2018 Pinot Grigio

Cinco de Mayo isn't complete without fresh guacamole, so we suggest pairing avocado dishes with a zesty white wine such as the 2018 Pinot Grigio. The mouth watering acidity in the wine cuts through the sweetness and fattiness of the fruit, making the pairing a total palate pleaser. 



2017 Malbec

The 2017 Malbec is a good choice to pair with apple or other fruit empanadas for dessert because the mocha, molasses and tobacco notes of this dry red blend beautifully with the crisp crunch and the sweet jammy filling of this classic dessert.

$44.00   $36.00
Time Posted: May 5, 2021 at 9:19 AM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink
Hannah Perry
April 21, 2021 | Hannah Perry

Wine Geek Wednesday


🍇Bud Break, Fruit Set & Freezes-Why NM Weather Is Our Biggest Challenge 🍇



Bud break and fruit set is the most exciting time of the year for Noisy Water- it’s a beautiful time of year filled with anticipation of a healthy new crop of grapes to make delicious new wine with. The snow has melted, life all around us is in full bloom and you can feel the warmth of the sun on your face. The vineyard is pruned ready to take on the new season, but if you are from NM you know that the weather can be unpredictable and unexpected (as you can see from the last few weeks). The harsh and unforgiving climate where our vineyard resides looms at the back of our minds, as a late frost has the potential to destroy a crop of grapes before it begins, we truly are in the Wild West of grape growing.


For ice to melt, energy must be added to the ice and that energy comes in the form of heat. Once the ice is melted, the resulting water contains that energy. The amount of heat generated is small, but enough to get trapped between the green tissue and the ice and keep the vines protected. 


Favorite Vintages Grown At Our Vineyard In Engle, New Mexico:

Time Posted: Apr 21, 2021 at 8:51 AM Permalink to Wine Geek Wednesday Permalink

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