Before young wine is put into barrels, it can often taste harsh and aggressive. Like a teenager, it needs to spend some time softening, harmonizing and becoming balanced. Oak barrels are the optimal vessel for this process. At Renwood, our wines rest in oak for fourteen to twenty-four months. They undergo changes that can only occur with the slow exposure to air that a barrel provides. We use oak rather than other types of wood because it is a dense, tight-grained wood thus allowing our wines to mature gracefully but yet allow the vibrant fruit to shine through. While wine is aging in the barrel, it also absorbs some of the flavor compounds from the wood, and the flavors that oak impart pair better with wine than other types of wood.
We do not add flavoring to wines, we consider our oak barrels to be our spice cabinet. We use 100% French oak as we find it is best suited to reflect the terrior of our The Renwood Ranch Vineyard. French Oak barrels are more expensive but the added expense and attention to detail helps our winemakers to create a wine with high aromatics, vibrant fruits, spice notes and elegantly refined tannins. It is our winemaker’s most important goal creates wines that are in impeccably balanced and in perfect harmony from beginning to end.
- Light Toast - Brings fruit aromas to the front
- Medium Toast - Fruit is dominant; very intense aromatic complexity
- Medium Toast+ - Fruit mellows with slightly burnt flavors
- Heavy Toast - Spicy, grilled aromas predominate
At Renwood, we currently have over 2,000 active barrels purchased from more than 20 Cooperages all over the world.