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Cuvée

assemblage (ES)
blend (GB)
uvaggio, vino tagliato (I)
mezcla (PO)

In viticulture differently used term with in the individual countries different meaning. The word comes from the French cuve (Vat or wine container). In the original sense, this means a certain amount of wine in a container (a barrel of wine, so to speak). In German-speaking countries, this usually means artful mixing of wines from different grape varieties. But you can do that too grape musts be fermented together, as on the southern Rhone is common. Other names are blend (New world), Cape Blend (South Africa), CVC (Conjunto de Varias Cosechas in Spain), Coupage. Marriage, Mélange (France for spirits) and Meritage (California).

As a rule, same-colored wines are mixed. The term has no meaning in terms of wine law, therefore "Cuvée" says on the label Nothing definite, because it can be quite a wine from one vine, from one Single Location or from one vintage be. For example, also an exclusive special bottling a winery for a catering business. In no case is (as in German-speaking countries not so rare suspected) the blending of wines in comparison to unmixed Cry a negative quality difference.

Purpose of the blending

The blending of wines mainly for taste reasons. You want to go through several different grape varieties alcohol content. flavors. acid and colour contribute. The latter is through Teinturiersorten of which only 5% are sufficient for one color deepening. Typically, a particular grape variety, the so-called leading variety, the majority of at least 50% of a Cuvée and thus determines the character of the wine. In addition to taste reasons, there are also practical or economic reasons. run blossom. fruit set and physiological maturity unsatisfactory in one grape variety, other grape varieties can compensate. This also achieves a risk minimization, what used to be called by the so-called mixed sentence reached, that is a vineyard with different sorts. How do you measure the success of a cuvée? Quite simply - when the assembled wine tastes better than every single batch in itself!

wine regulations

In all countries, there are country-specific regulations regarding authorized grape varieties different per wine quality class. ever origin (defined geographical area) it is determined which varieties may be used, whereby also a bandwidth with a percentage minimum to maximum proportion per variety can be determined. Especially in Italy and France there are wines with five or more blended grape varieties, such as Chianti or even 13 at Châteauneuf-du-Pape, But mostly that means gross and often too unmixed Wines allowed. A default could be: Syrah at least 60 to 100%, Grenache Noir ( Garnacha Tinta ) Max. 40%, as well as Mourvèdre ( Monastrell ) and or Cinsault Max. 25%. Typical cuvées are Bordeaux red wines; The characteristic variety mix is called Bordeaux blend, The picture shows a cuvée from the left bank of the river Garonne ( Rive gauche ), where grape varieties (all or only three of them) and share each Chateau are different. As a rule, however, the variety dominates in this area Cabernet Sauvignon,

Rive gauche - Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Cot (Malbec), Merlot, Petit Verdot

In the German-speaking countries, a cuvée consists mostly of two, more rarely more grape varieties. Whether this am label must be specified, varies by country / region / appellation. The mixing of red wine and white wine (whether grape, Mash, grape or wine) is for quality wine. country wine and Wine with vintage / variety within the EU forbidden. As an exception, mixing in any form is only allowed for vintage wines / varieties. But there are according to EU regulations granted derogations for certain areas or wines for traditional reasons, such as Slovenian cviček, the French Châteauneuf-du-Pape and the Italian Chianti, See under wine law (Paragraph waste), as well as with the individual wine-producing countries,

manufacturing

The must of the first pressing process in the production of champagne is called Tête de cuvée, After fermentation, up to 50 basic wines from different vintages can be blended together (with the exception of the Millésime, the so-called vintage champagne). The result of the mixture or combination of these wines before the second fermentation (bottle fermentation) is called Cuvée, the process of blending but as assemblage (especially when blending young wines) called. But as I said, these are not clearly defined terms and they are often used regionally alternately alternately. The best barrels (from the best vintages, long matured) make the top product of the house, the so-called Cuvée de Prestige, Becomes a champagne Produced from grapes of one layer, that's what you call it Mono blend,

In Bordeaux, the selection of certain barrels and the subsequent blending of wines as assemblage or Marriage. The final cuvee is thereby from year to year Maître de chai (Butler) often decided only in the spring after tasting the wines. The best barrels yield the Grand Vin bearing the Château name. The lower quality wines then become second wine or third-party wine blended and must also have on bottle labels other names than the top product (the first wine) of the house. The calculation formulas that are helpful in the cuttings are under waste cross described.

Additional information

Complete listings of the numerous vinification measures and cellar techniques, as well as the wine-regulated wine, sparkling wine and distillate types are under the keyword winemaking contain. Comprehensive information on wine law is available under the keyword wine law,

Pictures: Ursula Bruehl, Doris Schneider, Julius Kühn Institute (JKI)

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