What are those crystals in my wine??? People call us concerned about this and we want to explain why it is not a fault but rather a virtue.
Odorless and tasteless, natural potassium bitartrate crystals in wine are a sign of quality!
Tartaric acid is one of the natural ingredients in naturally produced wine. It is responsible for that tingly, crisp taste which makes wine pair so well with food.
During the winemaking process, some of the tartaric acid precipitates to the bottom of storage tanks in the form of potassium bitartrate crystals, especially when the wine is chilled (we know this product in supermarkets as “Cream of Tartar”). But even after chilling to 28 degrees Farenheit, some of the acid remains in our wine. Later, when the wine in the bottle is chilled, tartaric crystals might appear on the cork or at the bottom of the bottle. They are harmless, tasteless and do not affect the quality of the wine.
We are explaining tartaric because many American consumers believe a wine should be free of sediment in any form, which is not at all how Europeans feel about their wine. For that reason, large domestic wine producers try to keep their wines free of these tartaric crystals. Their wines undergo an unnatural process known as “ion exchange” to exchange potassium for sodium.
At Applewood Winery we are concerned with creating a natural product for the your enjoyment. We seek to keep the natural qualities and flavor inherent in wine, and to add no foreign chemicals or process into winemaking.