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Foudre (big wood) - Cement cuves

Foudre (big wood) - Cement cuves

The "Grosses Holz" (in German) or "Foudre" (in French) is the traditional large barrel. In our regions most wines are finished in a big barrel. Wineries will keep them for decades, sometimes generations. They offer textured surface and micro air exchange of barrels - the texture of wood without the flavour of wood. A large foudre is a phenomenal expense - they have to be mounted on site.
Cement tanks with enamel coating were once very common, but went out of fashion in favour of steel and plastic composite tanks. They're still widely found in traditional cellars in Beaujolais and Switzerland but until recently people did not put them in new cellars. They are coming back in fashion for their thermal insulator effect, for "low intervention" winemaking.

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