Most of the wine produced at City Winery is aged in oak barrels for periods ranging from six months to over two years. When first placed into the barrel, some of the new wine is absorbed into the wood, especially if it is new. Gradually, air will be drawn into the barrel as this happens. Since wood is not an airtight container, some wine is also lost to evaporation. To prevent oxidation the barrels must periodically be “topped” with additional wine to eliminate any air space. The following video is a tongue-in-cheek look at topping barrels, meant to be entertaining as well as informative. Shot entirely on-location at City Winery.
Intro: A lone cellar intern contends with wine barrels that need topping. The consequences of letting the wine oxidize lead to an out-of-control chemical reaction that has everyone running for cover.