The wine has been accompanying us for millennia, and behind every bottle lies the hard work of production where wine tanks play a starring role.
Do you know how they came about and their relevance in creating those wines you love so much? Let us tell you.
WHAT IS A WINE TANK?
Wine tanks, sometimes also called vats or casks in certain places, are containers where wine fermentationtakes place. During this process, grape must transforms into wine thanks to the action of yeasts which convert sugar into alcohol.
That’s why they’re an important element in the wine-making process of DOCa Rioja wines, since they influence the characteristics of the wine produced in them.
HISTORY OF WINE TANKS
We must go back to ancient times to understand the history of wine tanks. In those times, the first wine producers sought ways to store wine so that it could be better preserved. Greeks and Romans used clay amphorae to transport and store wine, these vessels becoming the “ancestors” of today’s wine tanks.
Later on, they discovered that the type of container they stored the wine in influenced its taste and quality and then wood tanks , appeared, usually made of oak, our barrels Still in use today, they have the unique characteristic of allowing a small amount of oxygen to come into contact with the wine, allowing it to “breathe,” which softens its tannins and adds complexity.
But it was with the industrial revolution in the 19th century , when new materials such as stainless steel. appeared. Being a material that doesn’t add additional flavors to the wine, it allows for controlling the wine-making process inside, fermentation, and preserving the characteristics of the grapes.
Stainless steel tanks, are the most used in the wine sector today primarily because they are durable, resistant, and easy to clean. However, they are not just simple containers, as they enable us to have precise control over the temperature during fermentation, thus preserving the freshness in the taste of the different grape varieties we use in the production of our wines.