Wine that has been allowed to age in ocean waters produces a unique taste, as indicated from bottles recovered from sunken ships. A California winery is now trying its hand at underwater wine-making to see if they can achieve the same effects.
On Wednesday, Mira Winery lowered four cases of Cabernet Sauvignon into the waters of Charleston Harbor. The wine will remain submerged for several months to see how the aquatic environment affects its flavor.
NBC News writes that Mira Winery placed 48 bottles of its wine into specially designed steel cages before sinking them offshore. Once recovered, the wine will be tested, tasted, and compared to land-aged wine. If the ocean-aged wine is a success, the winery plans to produce and sell it.
Jim “Bear” Dyke Jr, president of Mira Winery, explained:
“In the ocean, where you have constant motion and a variance of temperature, but it’s also very similar to what the ideal storage in a warehouse is, where you have a lack of light, different pressure. We’re going to find out what happens.”
Gustavo Gonzalez, one of Mira’s winemakers, spoke to The Associated Press about the thrill of a new wine-making experiment:
“This is a very exciting thing for me as a winemaker. When you make wine it’s pretty much the same thing for everybody. You can change it up a bit but and see what happens and your Cabernet may taste a little bit different from your neighbor’s Cabernet. We’ll pull it out in late May and see what the effect of the water temperature, the water pressure and, more interesting to me, the swaying motion of the water does to the wine.”
While European winemakers have experimented with wine aged in ocean waters, this will be the first effort undertaken domestically.