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home > food & wine dictionary > free-run juice; free-run wine

Food and Wine Dictionary

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 free-run juice; free-run wine 

Free-run juice is juice that flows freely from grapes without external pressure, such as that applied by a wine PRESS. This usually occurs simply from the natural weight of the grapes on top of each other or during CRUSHING of the grapes. Free-run juice (usually associated with white-wine grapes) is considered the best because pressing produces press juice, which can contain bitter, sometimes unwanted, compounds that are released from the skins and/or seeds. If not overtly astringent or bitter, press juice is sometimes mixed with free-run juice to give the resulting wine STRUCTURE. Similarly, after the fermentation of red wines, the wine that flows freely (without pressing) from the pulp, skins, and seeds is called free-run wine (vin de goutte in France). Press wine, called vin de presse by the French, is then pressed from the MUST. Press wine is darker, more TANNIC, and much coarser than free-run wine. Some winemakers blend some or all of the press wine into the free-run wine to add firmness and structure; those who want more accessible wines don't follow this practice.

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Material adapted from the The New Food Lover's Companion

© Copyright Barron's Educational Services, Inc. 1995 based on
THE FOOD LOVER'S COMPANION, 2nd edition, by Sharon Tyler Herbst.

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