What do "wine lees" mean?
The etymology of the term " wine lees" goes back to medieval Latin "lium", meaning "sediment". The term then evolved into "lie" in Old French, referring to the organic deposit that naturally forms at the bottom of wine vats during the fermentation and aging process. This deposit is mainly composed of tartar and yeast, as well as other solid substances from the winemaking process.
Over time, the term "wine lees" has come to refer to this specific deposit in wine. Essential oils of wine lees, used in perfumery for their fruity, alcoholic notes, are extracted from this specific sediment to capture the characteristic aromas of wines and spirits.
In the beginning...
The history of "wine lees" dates back to antiquity, when the first winemaking techniques were developed. Wine lees are the organic deposits that form naturally at the bottom of wine vats during the fermentation and aging process.From the earliest days of viticulture, winemakers noticed the presence of this deposit in their wine vats. They quickly realized that this sediment could have an impact on wine quality.
Over time, they learned to manage this deposit in a way that improved wine quality and stability.Over the centuries, winemaking techniques have evolved, enabling winemakers to better control the fermentation and lees separation processes. Today, some wines, such as white wines aged on lees, are intentionally left in contact with the lees to develop specific aromas and textures.
Wine lees production
Wine lees production is a term that can be interpreted in many different ways, depending on the context. It can refer to the management and use of the organic deposit, known as "wine lees", which forms naturally at the bottom of wine tanks during the fermentation and aging process.In the context of viticulture and winemaking, "lees production" refers to the practices used by winemakers to manage this deposit and take advantage of it to improve wine quality.
Some wines, particularly white wines, can be aged on lees, i.e. left in contact with the lees for a certain period of time to develop specific aromas and textures. This practice can add complexity and richness to the final wine.In the context of perfumery, "wine lees" can refer to the use of essential oils from wine lees in perfume compositions. Perfumers extract these essential oil from the lees deposit to capture the characteristic scents of wines and spirits, bringing an alcoholic, fruity touch to fragrances.
In both cases, the production of "wine lees" reflects the expertise, creativity and know-how of professionals in their respective fields, whether viticulture or perfumery.
What do you know about wine lees in perfumery?
In perfumery, the term "wine lees" refers to the use of specific essential oils extracted from the organic deposit that forms naturally at the bottom of wine vats during the fermentation and aging process. These essential oils are obtained by hydrodistillation of this deposit, capturing the characteristic aromas of wines and spirits.
Essential oils extracted from wine lees are of particular interest due to the variety of their active ingredients, which depend on terroir and vintages. These essential oils are used in aromatherapy and, of course, in perfumery, where they can reflect the aromatic characteristics of their vintage of origin. Because of their diversity, wine lees essential oils have attracted a great deal of interest in the perfumery industry, as they offer a varied olfactory palette depending on their origin, vintage or terroir.
Among the best-known wine lees essential oils are green wine lees, which offers a fresher note, and white wine lees, which is fruitier. However, there's no reason why the lees note can't be produced from any nectar, making it possible to explore notes based on cognac, brandy or even champagne. These lively, richly nuanced essential oils offer perfumers an infinite creative palette for composing unique, captivating fragrances, evoking the elegance and complexity of wines and spirits.
The olfactory notes of wine lees in perfumery are rich and complex, offering fruity, woody, alcoholic and floral nuances.
They evoke the aromas of ripe grapes, the woody touches of barrel aging, the elegance of fermented alcohol and sometimes subtle floral notes. Gourmand accents of honey or candied fruit can also stand out in wine lees (except white and green). These captivating notes enable perfumers to create unique, seductive compositions, evoking the delicate, intoxicating ambience of wines and spirits, while adding a sophisticated, convivial touch to fragrances.
Popular wine lees perfumes
• L’eau de parfum Salute ! by Parfum d’Empire
• L’eau de parfum Une Rose by Frédéric Malle
• L’eau de parfum Bloody Wood by Liquides Imaginaires
• L’eau de parfum Bello Rabelo by Liquides Imaginaires
• L’eau de parfum Nevermore by Frapin