Challenges from the vineyard You are here Micro oxygenation questions frequently asked by winemakers
Making better red wine

Numerous techniques have been used by winemakers in an effort to consistently create superior wines. Two of these techniques (and variations of them) have proven most effective at meeting the needs of winemakers: the first is realized through the influence of toasted oak and the second is achieved through the effective use of air and oxygen.
  Traditionally, the influence of toasted oak on wine occurred through storage in toasted oak barrels. Furthermore, oxygen or air supplied to the wine was thought to occur only by permeation through the oak barrel. Both traditional approaches can produce wines with well-integrated flavors and aging. However, since all grapes are not the same, conditions must be varied to bring out the best in a particular wine.

  American and Australian winemakers have pioneered the use of oak integration systems in the production of superior wines. Four alternatives to barrels (chips, beans, segments and staves) allow the winemaker to dictate the quality and type of toasted oak that a wine will experience. However, whereas oak integration systems could supply flavor, they could not induce aging or maturation.

  It was not until the introduction of a French oxygen micro-metering device that a true alternative to barrels for flavor and aging was made possible. The use of a device to meter in small quantities of oxygen, combined with the proper level of toasted oak, gives the winemaker a degree of control over wine production never before possible. A winemaker can now give the wine what it needs - no more, no less - in terms of flavor and aging.
  The Fermentation section of this website recommends how, when and where to apply toasted oak and micro oxygenation, helping the winemaker produce enhanced wines in a consistent manner.
  The StaVin products section explains how to integrate quality toasted oak with your wines.
  Chemistry details the chemical structures when using micro oxygenation and toasted oak in red winemaking.
  The purpose of this website is to give winemakers more flexibility and control in their constant endeavor to create better wines.