There is a famous old wine adage ‘good wine is made in the vineyard’, but that only tells ‘half the story’. Because more importantly, certainly as far as the consumer is concerned, there is the other half of the story, which is ‘turning good grapes into quality wine’.
And that is exactly where Delicata has been focusing its attention over the last few years. At its new winemaking centre in Marsa it is now armed with the most advanced technology available, which will enable the Delicata winemakers to transform all of their quality grapes, grown by its army of over 300 vignerons/farmers, into the finest IGT and DOK quality wines on the market.
The Delicata Vines for Wines project which was initiated 15 years ago has now reached fruition and for the last few years Delicata has redirected its main focus from viticulture back to the actual art of winemaking itself. Not that this is something new to the Delicata family who have been making wine for over 100 years and already operates a modern winery dedicated solely to producing, selling and distributing Malta wines.
Delicata’s latest technological breakthrough is the addition of new state-of-the-art red wine tank farm that has been built incorporating the very latest in environmentally friendly manufacturing processes for wine, together with cutting edge winemaking technology. The new Grape Receiving Facility and Winemaking Hall are the result of a €1.2 million investment which was inaugurated by The Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi last week.
The winemaking hall houses 16 new stainless steel temperature controlled tanks specifically designed to ferment Delicata’s D.O.K. and I.G.T. red wines. This will enable Delicata’s winemakers to separate and ferment the grapes grown in individual pocket sized vineyards in much smaller quantities than in the past. The winemaking Hall also houses the grape receiving hopper, grape elevator, de-stemming machine, Willmes pneumatic soft tank press and customised equipment to deal with the instant washing of grape crates and stem and skin disposal.
The new equipment has also been laid out in a much more efficient way designed to maximise the extraction and preservation of key elements in the wine such as the grape varietals characteristics, aromas, tannins and those all important fruit flavours. Basically, all the things the farmer ( and nature) works so hard to get ‘in the grape’, Delicata’s new equipment will ensure that it gets ‘in the bottle’.
The ‘green technology’ used in the new winemaking hall includes many energy saving devices, a solar water system, natural lighting and ventilation, a new biological waste treatment plant and an insulated roof which has also been designed to benefit the fermentation process which in itself will even improve the quality of the resulting wine.
Phase 2 of Delicata’s quality winemaking investment, which is already underway, will mean another €900,000.00 will go towards installing a new white wine tank farm and a new cold stabilisation plant which will be ready for the next vintage of Delicata’s batch of 2010 I.G.T. and D.O.K. quality wines.