It's in big oak tuns like these that most Beaujolais cellaring wines spend several months before being bottled. But what actually happens between the harvests and the bottle?
At harvest time, the grapes that make Beaujolais red wines are picked, whole bunches are put into vats to macerate for 4 to 15 days.
The juice at the bottom is drawn off.This is the free-run juice. Then the bunches are pressed. This produces the press juice. The two are blended
and finish fermenting together.
Then comes the maturing step. This can be done in bottles, vats, or traditional wooden containers:barrels, half-hogsheads or big tuns, where the wine becomes more rounded and complex.
Beaujolais Nouveau are primeur wines and skip this step.
That’s the general principle, but the winemaker makes each Beaujolais special. Each winemaker has his own recipe and special techniques.