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Welcome to Lost Oak Winery's Blog. 


Angela Chapman
March 4, 2019 | Angela Chapman

Diamonds in My Wine

Have you ever had a bottle of white wine, perfectly chilled, only to find a diamond in it?!?!
Not... sadly not that kind of diamond....
We are talking about the diamonds that look to be sediment in the bottom of your bottle or glass. 
These particles could be tartaric crystals, what we in the industry affectionately refer to as Wine Diamonds. People tend to notice the particles more towards the end of the bottle and they will only appear after the wine has been chilled. The formation of tartaric crystals in wine is common and has nothing to do with the quality of the wine. However, we do take extra steps to try and prevent their formation because a lot of people might see these particles and assume that the wine has gone bad. This is not the case. 
So, what is happening in your wine? Tartaric acid occurs naturally in many fruits including grapes. In most cases the tartaric acid stays in its liquid from in the wine and can add citrus-y notes to it. However, we tend to chill white wine, and when the wine is chilled to temperatures around  40°F  the tartaric acid compounds will naturally combine with potassium to form a crystal. Like I said previously, we do what we can to prevent this from happening. Our one big defense against wine diamonds is to have the wine undergo cold stabilization before we bottle. We lower the temperature of the wine to force the crystals to form and then filter them off. However, this doesn't always prevent the crystals form forming. 
If they do form, rest assured that drinking them will not hurt you, but if you don't want them, pouring the wine slowly will keep the crystals in the bottle and out of your glass.  
- Written by Angela Chapman, WSET III
Edited by fellow wino Mariam Copeland
Time Posted: Mar 4, 2019 at 8:51 AM
Angela Chapman
March 4, 2019 | Angela Chapman

The Holidays: Impress with Food & Wine

Holiday food preparations can be daunting even to the most seasoned of home chefs.

Should I put cranberries in the stuffing this year? Would anyone notice if I made box mashed potatoes? Is macaroni and cheese an acceptable side dish? I think aunt Carol is gluten free now, how do I even make a gluten free pie?


Once you get all that settled you are STILL NOT FINISHED, you have drinks to think about!
And, if your family is anything like ours, wine will be involved.



A good hostess always has the perfect wine parings to complement their lovingly crafted food. After all, you didn’t just spend the week leading up to Thanksgiving and Christmas fretting over which gravy is the best to serve to simply ignore wine parings, right?



Worry not, the Lost Oak Family is here to help! Here are some tips from our little family:

From Gene: Stock up on Lost Oak Wine and have a lot of verity, your friends and family will find the pairing that they like the most.





From Judy: It’s about the presentation!  Bring out fancy glasses and serve red and white Lost Oak Wine to make the place settings pop.





From Roxanne: If you are going to someone else’s house, be sure to bring a bottle or two of your favorite Lost Oak Wine. It makes a great hostess gift and you are guaranteed to have something you like to drink.



From Angela: A lighter red, like our Montepulciano, is a great compliment to both turkey and ham, but you can never go wrong with our Sauvignon Blanc either. The subtle flavor won’t overpower the turkey and the citrus notes can stands up to the fats in the ham. For those with a little bit more of a sweet tooth, go for the Orange Muscat. The slight orange zest flavor will complement everything form the Turkey to that strange Jell-O thing with the fruit that Aunt Carol always insists on bringing.



From Mariam: I’m serving a bottle of everything Lost Oak – red, white, sweet, dry, bubbly.  But back off that extra bottle of Cabernet… is mine.  I need it to make it through the day!





From Jim: Get two bottles of every Lost Oak red!  Drink one now, then drink one a year from now to compare how the flavors evolved.  You won't be sorry!




From Our table to yours, Cheers!






by Angela Chapman & Mariam Copeland




Time Posted: Mar 4, 2019 at 8:48 AM
Angela Chapman
March 4, 2019 | Angela Chapman

Get Out Your Pruning Shears

The weather doesn’t know if it wants to storm, freeze, heat up or do all of it at the same time right now. 
That can only mean one thing… it’s springtime here in Texas!
But, before we can really start to appreciate the wonders of a Texas spring, us grape growers are pruning our vines. During pruning we will cut off 70 to 90 percent of the previous year’s growth, basically taking the vine back to just a trunk and 2 cordons (making it look like a gnarly capital letter T). 
This may sound extreme, and indeed it looks extreme, but it is entirely necessary for good fruit production. The biggest reason for this drastic pruning is that grapevines only produce fruit on what it known as ‘one-year old wood.’ As it sounds, this is wood on the vine that is only a year-old. Wood older than that only produces shoots and leaves. We want to maximize the amount of fruit producing shoots while minimizing shoots that will only make leaves. 
But, it’s still not that easy. You can’t go out into your vineyard and start cutting all willy-nilly. We have to look at each vine as an individual and decide which buds will be the best to keep and cut the rest off. Yep, we aren’t even going to keep all the buds on the one-year old wood, only the strongest with the best chance of producing quality fruit. For the most part, the vine only has the energy to produce so much, so we want it to spend its energy growing the best. After all, exceptional wine starts off as exceptional grapes, and to get those we must be picky pruners.
~ Cheers!
by Angela Chapman
Time Posted: Mar 4, 2019 at 8:47 AM
Angela Chapman
March 4, 2019 | Angela Chapman

A Look at Bottling

We have been hard at work bottling lots of new wines for you to enjoy in the coming year!  But, as with most things at a winery, bottling is not as easy as it sounds. As a boutique winery with smaller production we do not have our own bottling line. This means that when it’s time to bottle our wine we call on Vine and Spirit. Vine and Spirit is a mobile bottling service that pulls up right next to our production facility. The semi truck hauls the entire bottling line in its trailer. It’s a tight fit in there but it works wonderfully. Once the truck is set up we hook it up to our wine tank where a pump pushes the wine through a final filtration before being put into bottles that are then corked, capsuled, and labeled. The machine does most of the work, but unfortunately it doesn’t do everything. We still rely on staff and our fearless hardcore volunteers do the heavy lifting and quality control.  Get empty bottles onto the line, box and palletize full bottles, check labels and capsule placement… and taste the wine, you know, quality control. It’s not an easy job, so cheers to all our volunteers, staff and to the hard workers at Vine and Spirit that help make bottling go smoothly.
- The Lost Oak Family
Angela Chapman, WSET III
Featured in the Lost Oak Winery Newsletter
From the Wine Nerd
Jan/Feb 2018




Time Posted: Mar 4, 2019 at 8:45 AM
Angela Chapman
March 4, 2019 | Angela Chapman

A Chill is in the Air but Not in My Red

Come colder weather many of us wine lovers start drinking more reds. Reds tend to be more appropriate for the winter because they are served at room temperature. This begs the question: why are reds served at room temperature? Much of the reason for this comes down to aromas and flavors. A white wine has very subtle and delicate aromas and flavors. These become detectable by our noses and tongues at lower temperatures. However, for red wine it is the opposite. Higher temperatures help release more aromas and flavors. Not only that, but when you chill a red wine the tannins and polyphenols can come off as more astringent and harsher. Again, the opposite is true for white wine, a higher temperature can make the acid more pronounced making it seem harsher and less crisp. As always, there are exceptions to the rules. Lighter reds, like Pinot Noir, tend to benefit from a slight chill, and heavily oaked Chardonnays can benefit from a higher temperature. Playing around with temperature can make your favorite wines more or less enjoyable. But, always remember, the important thing is what tastes good to you, at whatever temperature that may be.
- Angela Chapman, WSET III
Featured in the Lost Oak Winery Newsletter
From the Wine Nerd
Jan/Feb 2018




Time Posted: Mar 4, 2019 at 8:44 AM
Angela Chapman
March 4, 2019 | Angela Chapman

Let the Cauldron Bubble

It is harvest time again! And harvesting means making more amazing wine.
Harvest selfie!
I recently got the pleasure of helping out with the crushing and destemming of some newly harvested grapes. 
it's a dirty job....
I have to say that I got to do the coolest job there, literally. When the grapes arrived in their bins it was my job to spread dry ice pellets on top of the grapes.
Selfie with dry ice. Because Science!
Dry ice is solid carbon dioxide and is -109.3ᵒ F. You have probably seen it in action in spooky movies. When dry ice sublimates (heats up and goes from a solid straight to a gas) it makes what looks to be really cool fog that flows across the floor. It’s really just carbon dioxide that is so cold you can see it. 
Movie creepy floor fog
That’s cool and all but why was I putting it on the grapes? Well it does a couple different things. The first is the most obvious; it cools the grapes down helping to preserve them while they are waiting to go into the crush. Because carbon dioxide is heavier than the air around it sinks to the bottom of the bin and envelops the fruit preventing any bacteria growth and unwanted early fermentation from wiled yeast. The dry ice also creates micro cryomaceration.  A process that flash freezes the grapes in direct contact with the dry ice. This has the result of breaking down cell wall structure and releasing more anthocyanins (color pigment), phenolics, and flavanoids.  That is a complicated way of saying that it gives the wine more character and complexity.
The end product is better wine but the process was not only fun to watch but also a little reminiscent of Halloween.
- Angela, WSET III
Hard work
Requires hydration!

By Angela Chapman








Time Posted: Mar 4, 2019 at 8:40 AM
Angela Chapman
March 4, 2019 | Angela Chapman

What Are We Waiting For?

There is a chill in the air and fall is here. The grape harvest is over, and the fruits of our labor have been fermented and are… well they're not doing very much. Or are they? 
Currently, our 2017 harvest has been turned into wine and are enjoying a bit of rest and relaxation in the form of aging. 
The reds are in oak barrels 
and the whites are in stainless steel tanks. 
But why can’t we drink them now and what’s the purpose of aging wine? 
To answer this, we will have to look at the wine making process. After the grapes are pressed, yeast is added, and fermentation happens. Fermentation is a chemical reaction where in the yeast turns the sugar in the grapes into Co2, heat, and alcohol. Simply put, it is no longer grape juice and that chemical reaction has left the newly made wine a bit unstable and unsure of itself. It lacks complexity, body, and character. 
Un-aged wines can come off as sharp and one dimensional. It is perfectly drinkable at this stage in its life but if bottled right then it would decline in quality quickly. Aging the wine allows for the flavor and aromas to develop and set into place making for a more enjoyable wine that will last longer. 
Waiting around for wine to age isn’t very much fun, but it’s worth it.
- Written by Angela Chapman, WSET III

Edited by fellow wino Mariam Copeland




Time Posted: Mar 4, 2019 at 7:49 AM
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