The yeast Brettanomyces (“Brett”), when present at high enough levels, can produce volatile phenolic compounds that adversely affect wine or beer quality. Commonly described as band aid, barn yard, bacon, or rancid aromas, these are definitely not something you want in your wine. The best way to control Brett is prevention with monitored free SO2 measurements and sanitary winery practices. Brett numbers tend to grow over time so it is important to know if you have any Brett present in your wine before it becomes a fault.
Vinmetrica is proud to begin offering Brettanomyces detection. The test uses PCR (polymerase chain reaction) based techniques with results in 24 hours of receiving your sample, typically. The test is quantitative and has a detection level down to 10 cells/mL. The test requires 100 mL sample of either wine, juices, lees, or barrel rinsate.
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Can a barrel with Brett be reused?