Ice wine - delicacy and beauty elixir
As winter has taken over in Switzerland with snow and frosty nights, this is the time of the year when a very rare wine speciality is produced: ice wine. In the small vineyard of Döttingen, not far from Mibelle Biochmistry, ice wine is produced for our product Vin-upLift.
Ice wine is a wine made of frozen grapes. For this, the grapes are left on the vine until the height of winter in November until January. The grapes must be harvested while still frozen, so this often happens at night or in the early dark hours of the morning. It is a delicate process, as the grapes need to be pressed while still frozen to produce the special ice wine.
Characteristic of ice wine is the concentrated sweetness combined with a high degree of acidity. This concentrated sweetness occurs when the water contained in the berries crystallizes during prolonged sub-zero temperatures. This leads to the fact that only the sugar contained in the berries binds non-crystallized water and fruit acids, which in turn is fermented into highly concentrated, sweet wine.
Ice wines usually have a pronounced acidity, which is a natural counterbalance to the intense natural sweetness of these wines. All of this makes ice wine an ideal accompaniment to desserts as an alternative to "normal" sweet wine.
Ice wine production is not only very costly for the wine maker, but also very risky as there is always the threat of a total loss due to unfavorable weather, especially in mild winters.
In addition, the yield is lower than with conventional wines, since only the healthiest grapes survive into winter and the ice crystals remain in the marc during pressing and only a small amount of the highly concentrated juice can be extracted. This explains the high price and rarity of ice wine.