ATTN Steve Edmunds: Could you revise and extend these remarks?

Over on that other board, you said this:

TN: 1947 Louis M. Martini Cabernet Sauvignon California Mountain

[u]Steve Edmunds:[/u] > I would be inclined to guess that, in fact, the '47 Martini underwent fermentation, and the greatest part of its élévage, in concrete, and only a very brief sojourn, if any, in redwood, accounting for its freshness after 62 years.

Could you expound your thinking here?

It feels as though you are implying that oak robs a wine of its “freshness” [and, beyond that, its ability to age].

PS: Have you ever applied this same line of thinking to white wines and malolactic fermentation? The non-malo’ed California chardonnays that I’ve had [like e.g. Montelena] sure do seem to be a lot “fresher” than most malo’ed-whites.

Not Steve, but I subbed for him once on “Dancing With Stars”!!!
I think it’s felt that the more a wine can be kept away from oxygen during its elevage, the longer it will retain its fruit. It gets more uptake of air when aged in small oak barrels than
it does in large oak uprights or redwood tanks. You can age it for a yr in small oak, or three yrs in a SS tank, and bottle them. The one in oak will usually lose its fruit afore
the tank one.