Also known as contact wine, the production process of orange wine is what gives it its unique color and taste. With its color ranging anywhere from a light to a deep hue of orange, its production process is similar to that of red wine where the grapes and seeds are allowed to be in contact with the wine for a longer time as compared to conventional white wine.
In the extraction of white wine, the grapes are pressed to produce the juice extract only and the seeds, skin, and stem are removed just before the wine starts to ferment.
However, during the production of orange wine, the stems, seeds, and skin are allowed to ferment with the wine through a process known as maceration. It is during this process that the wine gets its distinct color, taste, and texture. The fermentation process can last for hours or even months. This process makes orange wine more complex than the average white wine, it is richer in taste and fuller in body and structure. The longer the fermentation time, the richer the taste and the deeper the hue. However, after aging the wine for three months, the color remains constant but the taste is deeper with further aging.
Why Orange Wine?
Orange wine may feel like it is a new fad, considering even modern-day films seem to promote it as hip. in the season two opener of Netflix’s dark comedy “Dead to Me”, Karen tries to win Jen’s friendship and approval over a bottle of orange wine. According to Nielsen, the sale of orange wine rose 27% in the first half of 2020 as compared to 2019 and 2018.
As much as it feels like a wave of newfound wine drink, orange wine dates back 8,000 years to the Caucus Mountains in modern-day Georgia. Over the years, Georgia’s wine production has grown and the rest of the world has also picked up the skill of making orange wine. According to Simon Woolf, the author of The Amber Revolution; How the world learned to love orange wine. There currently 100 times more orange wines in the market as compared to what was available 15 years ago.
With the quest of the younger generation to enjoy a drink away from the mainstream and rather considered for the old, orange wine comes as a relief. The amber revolution is we may call it, has had so much influence that the orange wine lovers do have their wine club; Orange Glou
This festive season, if you want to try something new and more exciting for your taste buds, why not be part of the orange revolution? Orange Christmas anyone?