While the wines have reasonably sufficient means of self-preservation, care must be taken in their handling and storage. We bottle by hand at “cellar temperature” (around 58°F). We strongly urge storage at the same “cellar temperature.” Otherwise, the wines will not age nor evolve in line with their potential. If stored at higher temperatures, as with any type of liquid, the wine could expand in the bottle, even “bleed” slightly. It most likely will still be good, but proper storage will avoid that risk.
Point: We do not “build” our wines with the idea that they will be subjected to consumer abuse in their handling and storage.
- Decanting & Presentation:
Many of our wines will not be ready to present immediately upon receipt. Most have or will precipitate sediment. If there is sediment, when transported, it will be disturbed and may cause the wine to look cloudy. If a bottle has disturbed sediment, stand it upright for long enough to allow the sediment to drop to the bottom. Depending on the wine, that could be several weeks. Then, decant it or pour it carefully so as not to disturb the sediment.
- When decanting a red wine, use a funnel, flashlight or candle and have a coffee filter ready on the side. Assuming you have stood the bottle upright long enough for the sediment to have gathered at the bottom of the bottle, you can start pouring the wine carefully into a decanter. Use a flashlight or candle under the bottle to help see the sediment coming. When you see the sediment start to come from the bottle, put the coffee filter in the funnel and pour the rest of the bottle through it. The coffee filter will catch the sediment and allow the rest to drip through. You do not need to pour the entire bottle through the coffee filter - just the tail end, again assuming you have had the bottle standing upright for a sufficient amount of time.
- If decanting a white or rosé, do not try to pour the tail end of the bottle through a coffee filter. Sediment in white or rosé wines is so fine, it will go right through a coffee filter. So, with whites and rosés, when you start seeing an appreciable amount of sediment, simply stop pouring. You can use what is left in the bottle to marinate something (or drink it, if you like).
After decanting, the wine can be served from the decanter, or the bottle can be rinsed out and the wine carefully poured back. Either way, a bit of sediment is a desirable. It is a small price to pay for a wine that has not had its body and soul eviscerated by filtration.
The size and shape of a wine glass can dramatically affect the way a wine shows. With the Pétard Blanc, rosés and dessert wines, we recommend a smaller, tulip shaped glass (12-14 ounces) and filled about 1/3 of the way. We use the Riedel 448/0.
With most reds, a larger tulip shaped glass is usually best (approximately 22 ounces) and filled 1/3 of the way. We recommend the Riedel 446/0 glass.