After the completion of the second alcoholic fermentation, a champagne or sparkling wine produced through traditional bottle fermentation must be aged on the lees for a minimum of 9 months at a pressure of at least 3.5 bar, as required by German law. However, the quality of the sparkling wine benefits from an extended lees aging period, which can range from 3 to 12 years in our winery. Within the method of traditional bottle fermentation, yeast plays a crucial role. As the second fermentation process concludes, the yeast cells slowly break down / decompose and release quality-enhancing substances (amino acids) into the sparkling wine. This is known as autolysis. Particularly in the production of our sparkling wines, yeast autolysis contributes to a positive influence on taste. Meanwhile, very small quantities of oxygen enter the bottle and small amounts of carbon dioxide escape. This phenomenon will lead to a slow oxidation of the wine, further developing its characteristics in a positive sense. We have found that ageing the sparkling wine on the yeast for a minimum of 36 months allows the development of distinctive tertiary aromas.
The sparkling wine gains complexity, smoothness, and substance. These aromas are often referred to as “brioche aromas.” To describe these brioche aromas, terms such as crusty bread, toast, pastry, caramel, roasted notes, coffee, or yeasty flavors are commonly used. Constant protection from the light and a steady temperature of around 12-14°C are crucial for ensuring the very best ageing conditions in our cellar.