Another smoke thread

Tasting notes, varietals, grapes - anything related to wine
Post Reply
Message
Author
User avatar
Alan Eden
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 3125
Joined: February 9th, 2014, 12:49 pm

Another smoke thread

#1 Post by Alan Eden » June 16th, 2018, 2:33 pm

How would buyers know which wines could be bottled with smoke taint ?
There are 10 kinds of people in the world, those that understand binary and those that don't

User avatar
Brian Tuite
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 19170
Joined: July 3rd, 2010, 8:53 am
Location: Podunk CA

Another smoke thread

#2 Post by Brian Tuite » June 16th, 2018, 3:29 pm

Reputable wineries will not release smoke tainted wines. Most all the wineries we deal with are reputable. I think. ;-)
Bob Wood - 1949-2013 Berserker for eternity! RIP

"On self-reflection, I think a big part of it was me just being a PITA customer..." ~ Anonymous Berserker

"Something so subtle only I can detect it." ~ Randy Bowman

2019 WOTY...

b. c@stner
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 804
Joined: June 8th, 2009, 7:52 pm
Location: Chicago Burbs...South Carolina Coast

Another smoke thread

#3 Post by b. c@stner » June 16th, 2018, 5:48 pm

There were smoke tainted wines bottled and released in 2008 particularly in Anderson Valley. And in other areas. Some wineries owned up to it, some did not. Alan has a valid question.
b 0 b

User avatar
Scott Brunson
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 8809
Joined: November 15th, 2011, 2:55 am
Location: in between coastal SC and south FL

Another smoke thread

#4 Post by Scott Brunson » June 16th, 2018, 6:19 pm

Taste them
Tous les chemins mènent à la Bourgogne!
On CT, I'm S1

User avatar
D@vid Bu3ker
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 33176
Joined: February 14th, 2009, 8:06 am
Location: Connecticut

Another smoke thread

#5 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » June 16th, 2018, 6:37 pm

b. c@stner wrote:There were smoke tainted wines bottled and released in 2008 particularly in Anderson Valley. And in other areas. Some wineries owned up to it, some did not. Alan has a valid question.
People learned a lot in 2008.

And there’s still not going to be any way to know.

Maybe they’ll mask it with Mega Purple! [snort.gif]
David Bueker - Rieslingfan

User avatar
Markus S
Posts: 6067
Joined: May 20th, 2010, 7:27 am

Another smoke thread

#6 Post by Markus S » June 16th, 2018, 6:37 pm

If they are cool to the touch, there is no taint.
If you pick up the wine and it feels hot, the fire got to it.
$ _ € ® e . k @

User avatar
D@vid Bu3ker
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 33176
Joined: February 14th, 2009, 8:06 am
Location: Connecticut

Another smoke thread

#7 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » June 16th, 2018, 6:38 pm

Or it’s from the hand of Sauron.
David Bueker - Rieslingfan

User avatar
Brian Tuite
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 19170
Joined: July 3rd, 2010, 8:53 am
Location: Podunk CA

Another smoke thread

#8 Post by Brian Tuite » June 16th, 2018, 7:29 pm

b. c@stner wrote:There were smoke tainted wines bottled and released in 2008 particularly in Anderson Valley. And in other areas. Some wineries owned up to it, some did not. Alan has a valid question.
After that debacle “most all reputable wineries will not release smoke tainted wine.” Sorry I had to spell it out completely.
Bob Wood - 1949-2013 Berserker for eternity! RIP

"On self-reflection, I think a big part of it was me just being a PITA customer..." ~ Anonymous Berserker

"Something so subtle only I can detect it." ~ Randy Bowman

2019 WOTY...

User avatar
M. Sai
Posts: 2253
Joined: January 28th, 2009, 8:16 pm
Location: Sonoma, CA

Another smoke thread

#9 Post by M. Sai » June 16th, 2018, 9:06 pm

Markus S wrote:If they are cool to the touch, there is no taint.
If you pick up the wine and it feels hot, the fire got to it.
This is probably the most reliable indicator.

A secondary, but probably much less foolproof tactic would be to ask when they fruit was harvested. Before Oct 21 = Good (majority of the region), after Oct 21 = bad.
Cheers!
Mike

Formerly ITB

User avatar
larry schaffer
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 7730
Joined: January 28th, 2009, 9:26 am
Location: Santa Ynez Valley, CA

Another smoke thread

#10 Post by larry schaffer » June 16th, 2018, 9:28 pm

Mike,

Do you think it's that simple? What about stuff that was crushed but not fermented yet in open top tanks?

I know folks don't want to 'assume the worst' and I'm hopeful it will end up better . . .
larry schaffer
tercero wines

Adam Lee
Posts: 1935
Joined: March 2nd, 2009, 5:16 am

Another smoke thread

#11 Post by Adam Lee » June 17th, 2018, 4:37 am

I’ve never seen nor heard of Wines crushed and in tank (open or otherwise) having smoke damage.

Adam Lee

User avatar
Otto Forsberg
Posts: 829
Joined: December 28th, 2017, 4:26 am
Location: Finland

Another smoke thread

#12 Post by Otto Forsberg » June 17th, 2018, 6:01 am

The smoke damage comes from unpicked fruit as the smoke phenolics permeate the porous grape skin. This is also why some whites can escape the smoke damage - the unwanted compounds get leached out from the skins mainly over skin maceration.
Last edited by Otto Forsberg on June 17th, 2018, 10:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Brian Tuite
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 19170
Joined: July 3rd, 2010, 8:53 am
Location: Podunk CA

Another smoke thread

#13 Post by Brian Tuite » June 17th, 2018, 7:10 am

M. Sai wrote:
Markus S wrote:If they are cool to the touch, there is no taint.
If you pick up the wine and it feels hot, the fire got to it.
This is probably the most reliable indicator.

A secondary, but probably much less foolproof tactic would be to ask when they fruit was harvested. Before Oct 21 = Good (majority of the region), after Oct 21 = bad.
Since the fires started on the 9th what significance does the 21st hold? Is that when harvest resumed?
Bob Wood - 1949-2013 Berserker for eternity! RIP

"On self-reflection, I think a big part of it was me just being a PITA customer..." ~ Anonymous Berserker

"Something so subtle only I can detect it." ~ Randy Bowman

2019 WOTY...

User avatar
Robert Page
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 106
Joined: May 24th, 2013, 10:52 am
Location: Sausalito, CA

Another smoke thread

#14 Post by Robert Page » June 17th, 2018, 7:41 am

M. Sai wrote: A secondary, but probably much less foolproof tactic would be to ask when they fruit was harvested. Before Oct 21 = Good (majority of the region), after Oct 21 = bad.
This. I'm just a consumer of wine, not ITB. But as a resident of southern Marin County (adjacent to Sonoma, close to Napa, etc) I can tell you the smoke was blowing for days in all directions and traveled as far as 50+ miles from multiple fire sources. I was still cleaning ash off of my car and house exterior into November.

This isn't going to stop me from buying 2017 vintage Northern California wines, but the primary and secondary challenges from these fires were pervasive. In addition to all of the smoke, there were multiple and wide-spread fire retardant drops, extended power outages, and workers unable to get to their jobs for days.

Personally, the 2017 vintage is interesting to me precisely because of these challenges. It was an absolutely horrible time for people in the area, and for people in the wine industry (all facets of it) in particular. That said, the fire weeks were filled with stories heroic as well as tragic, and most of them took place in wine country. And, in any case, I cannot imagine a more difficult time for a winemaker--it will be interesting to experience the output of wineries who remained in production and who clearly had to apply creativity and other skills outside of the norm during this period .

I can't say that I know what smoke-taint tastes like, but if I happen to pop open a '17 at some later date and think I'm tasting it, it will only serve as a reminder of the uniquely punishing period endured last October, and of all of the industry people who found a way to power through it.

b. c@stner
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 804
Joined: June 8th, 2009, 7:52 pm
Location: Chicago Burbs...South Carolina Coast

Another smoke thread

#15 Post by b. c@stner » June 17th, 2018, 5:58 pm

Brian Tuite wrote:
b. c@stner wrote:There were smoke tainted wines bottled and released in 2008 particularly in Anderson Valley. And in other areas. Some wineries owned up to it, some did not. Alan has a valid question.
After that debacle “most all reputable wineries will not release smoke tainted wine.” Sorry I had to spell it out completely.
Actually I'm a pretty good speler champagne.gif
b 0 b

User avatar
Brian Tuite
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 19170
Joined: July 3rd, 2010, 8:53 am
Location: Podunk CA

Another smoke thread

#16 Post by Brian Tuite » June 17th, 2018, 8:47 pm

b. c@stner wrote:
Brian Tuite wrote:
b. c@stner wrote:There were smoke tainted wines bottled and released in 2008 particularly in Anderson Valley. And in other areas. Some wineries owned up to it, some did not. Alan has a valid question.
After that debacle “most all reputable wineries will not release smoke tainted wine.” Sorry I had to spell it out completely.
Actually I'm a pretty good speler champagne.gif
My apoligys!
Bob Wood - 1949-2013 Berserker for eternity! RIP

"On self-reflection, I think a big part of it was me just being a PITA customer..." ~ Anonymous Berserker

"Something so subtle only I can detect it." ~ Randy Bowman

2019 WOTY...

Viet Ly
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 201
Joined: November 9th, 2013, 12:18 pm
Location: Irvine, CA

Another smoke thread

#17 Post by Viet Ly » June 18th, 2018, 9:33 am

What are some examples of 2008 wines that were heavily tainted? Asking for fans of Laphroaig =D

Edit: ok, just went through the rabbit hole and read up on those old threads. Some interesting stories on the "boycott" thread too.
Last edited by Viet Ly on June 18th, 2018, 9:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
larry schaffer
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 7730
Joined: January 28th, 2009, 9:26 am
Location: Santa Ynez Valley, CA

Another smoke thread

#18 Post by larry schaffer » June 18th, 2018, 9:41 am

Otto Forsberg wrote:The smoke damage comes from unpicked fruit as the smoke phenolics permeate the porous grape skin. This is also why some whites can escape the smoke damage - the unwanted compounds get leached out from the skins mainly over skin maceration.
You are correct - but this was a 'unique' situation where there might have been tanks that were inundated with smoke and/or ash. I'm not saying it happened - and Adam is saying he knows of nothing like this - but in the middle of harvest, and with folks having to get out ASAP, I can imagine that there's always the chance that it did.

We also know that some wineries were inaccessible for awhile - and some lost power for awhile. That could and would mean that jackets on tanks would have not been on, and smaller tanks perhaps may not have been punched down or pumped over for awhile. I have not heard of any 'stuck' ferments, but it would not surprise me if there were.

I guess we'll just have to wait and see - I know that folks won't want to think about this and no, I'm not a 'the sky is falling' kind of guy - but I can certainly imagine some of these scenarios taking place and possibly affecting the fermentations and subsequent wines.

Cheers.
larry schaffer
tercero wines

Bdklein
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 4598
Joined: November 10th, 2013, 1:16 pm

Another smoke thread

#19 Post by Bdklein » June 18th, 2018, 10:22 am

I would probably grab a 2016 Sonoma or Napa wine over a 2017 each and every time if/when available if buying in a retail store .
Bruce Klein

User avatar
Bruce Rudman
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1530
Joined: July 19th, 2009, 6:29 pm
Location: Thousand Oaks, CA

Another smoke thread

#20 Post by Bruce Rudman » June 18th, 2018, 5:21 pm

Another issue is it was shown that wine that showed no apparent taint prior to bottling developed the problems after bottling. The chemical enzyme may have been present but it was thought insignificant - so now I assume people may err on the side of caution.
Bruce
_________________
(CT Handle: Bruce61)

Adam Lee
Posts: 1935
Joined: March 2nd, 2009, 5:16 am

Another smoke thread

#21 Post by Adam Lee » June 18th, 2018, 6:22 pm

I think that, much like 2008, where the smoke was played up in the media but the spring frost was a widespread problem — smoke in 2017 will get the lions share of attention. But the early september heat spike across the state will effect far more Wines Than smoke.

Adam Lee
Clarice Wine Company


larry schaffer wrote:
Otto Forsberg wrote:The smoke damage comes from unpicked fruit as the smoke phenolics permeate the porous grape skin. This is also why some whites can escape the smoke damage - the unwanted compounds get leached out from the skins mainly over skin maceration.
You are correct - but this was a 'unique' situation where there might have been tanks that were inundated with smoke and/or ash. I'm not saying it happened - and Adam is saying he knows of nothing like this - but in the middle of harvest, and with folks having to get out ASAP, I can imagine that there's always the chance that it did.

We also know that some wineries were inaccessible for awhile - and some lost power for awhile. That could and would mean that jackets on tanks would have not been on, and smaller tanks perhaps may not have been punched down or pumped over for awhile. I have not heard of any 'stuck' ferments, but it would not surprise me if there were.

I guess we'll just have to wait and see - I know that folks won't want to think about this and no, I'm not a 'the sky is falling' kind of guy - but I can certainly imagine some of these scenarios taking place and possibly affecting the fermentations and subsequent wines.

Cheers.

User avatar
Otto Forsberg
Posts: 829
Joined: December 28th, 2017, 4:26 am
Location: Finland

Another smoke thread

#22 Post by Otto Forsberg » June 19th, 2018, 12:52 am

larry schaffer wrote:
Otto Forsberg wrote:The smoke damage comes from unpicked fruit as the smoke phenolics permeate the porous grape skin. This is also why some whites can escape the smoke damage - the unwanted compounds get leached out from the skins mainly over skin maceration.
You are correct - but this was a 'unique' situation where there might have been tanks that were inundated with smoke and/or ash. I'm not saying it happened - and Adam is saying he knows of nothing like this - but in the middle of harvest, and with folks having to get out ASAP, I can imagine that there's always the chance that it did.

We also know that some wineries were inaccessible for awhile - and some lost power for awhile. That could and would mean that jackets on tanks would have not been on, and smaller tanks perhaps may not have been punched down or pumped over for awhile. I have not heard of any 'stuck' ferments, but it would not surprise me if there were.

I guess we'll just have to wait and see - I know that folks won't want to think about this and no, I'm not a 'the sky is falling' kind of guy - but I can certainly imagine some of these scenarios taking place and possibly affecting the fermentations and subsequent wines.

Cheers.
Yes, that's true. It's definitely a rare situation, but I guess stuff like that could happen. However, I have no idea whether this would result in the fault known as smoke taint.
Bruce Rudman wrote:Another issue is it was shown that wine that showed no apparent taint prior to bottling developed the problems after bottling. The chemical enzyme may have been present but it was thought insignificant - so now I assume people may err on the side of caution.
I remember reading an article on smoke taint research (probably AWRI) and IIRC, the smoke taint usually isn't noticeably immediately, but instead develops over time, normally taking 1 to 2 years before appearing. That's also why some producers might prefer to keep the wines to themselves long enough to see whether they are affected - instead of either dumping the whole batch or releasing faulty wines.

User avatar
larry schaffer
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 7730
Joined: January 28th, 2009, 9:26 am
Location: Santa Ynez Valley, CA

Another smoke thread

#23 Post by larry schaffer » June 19th, 2018, 8:11 am

Here is a brief write up from Galloni on tasting through a bunch of samples of 2017 Napa wines along with some insight from winemakers / vyd managers.

One thing that is clear is that 2017 is more than just about the fires. The extreme flood in the Spring and then extreme temperatures in late Spring and then again over Labor Day weekend marked the vintage before those fires struck. There's an interesting discussion about the use of 'shade cloths', something that we've heard more about for the last few years, where vineyard managers are trying to 'protect' their fruit from extreme heat after veraison. These are not only being used in Napa - I've seen their use in Paso and sparingly in SB County as well.

Cheers.

http://www.vinous.com/articles/2017-nap ... s-jun-2018
larry schaffer
tercero wines

Post Reply

Return to “Wine Talk”