Solving vineyard blocks suspected of containing smoke taint due to fires.
For vineyard blocks suspected of containing smoke taint due to wildfires. Two of the main volatile phenols in smoke, guaiacol and 4-methylguaiacol, are useful markers of smoke impact in wines. Their concentration is usually correlated with the degree of perceived smoke impact, particularly in wines not exposed to toasted oak.
to treat with oak:
To treat with oak, we recommend making an addition of 4-8 lbs per ton of French oak chips at fermentation at a ratio of 75% Untoasted French Chips : 25% Light Toast French Chips. Fines also work (check inventory levels and sell from that). You will get more extraction from fines – so if the smoke taint is extreme, recommend fines. Strongly recommend against the addition of any toasted oak heavier than light as that will just add more smoke compounds to the wine. The idea here is to have the untoasted oak bind with the smoke compounds, removing them from the wine after fermentation when the chips are filtered out, while a small portion of the light toast will boost fruit-based tones and add another layer of flavor to dilute any of the remaining smokey compounds.