CHAPTER 7:FERMENTATION: GRAPES INTO WINE

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IT WAS THE FALL OF 1982. IT WAS WELL PAST LATE. I WAS SITTING CROSS-LEGGED ATOP A STAINLESS STEEL TANK ABOUT 20 FEET (6.1 M) OFF THE GROUND, SPRAYING COLD WATER DOWN THE SIDES ONTO A FLOWERED BLANKET THAT WRAPPED THE TANK. A BIG WINDOW FAN WAS BLOWING ACROSS THE BLANKET, EVAPORATING THE WATER AND (HOPEFULLY) PULLING HEAT OUT OF THE METAL TANK WALLS.

As the sun began to peek in through the cellar door, I painfully straightened my legs and climbed down the ladder to pull a sample and check the temperature of the wine in the tank. It was my first Chardonnay vintage in this region and I had no jacketed tanks ...

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