Sur Lie

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In winemaking, after fermentation is complete, the dead yeast or “lees”, as they are called, fall to the bottom of the container and the wine usually poured off of it. Some winemakers opt to leave the wine sitting on the lees for a while thus imparting more character. The resulting wine is then said to be bottled “sur lie”. It is most often used in the Loire Valley for Muscadet that is produced between the Sevre and Maine Rivers. Here the wine takes on a light carbonic spritz felt on the tip of the tongue. Sometimes it is used in Chardonnay to give the wine a slight creamy note. Either way, this interesting, winemaking procedure is but another option open to the winemaker to add complexity to a wine.

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