elevage
When the red wine has completed its
malolactic fermentation
Malolactic Fermentation : transformation of malic acid into lactic acid by lactic acid bacteria. Takes place after the alcoholic fermentation. It rounds and refines the flavours of wines.
, we have reached the end of autumn.
 
The wine is then removed and the best lots are placed in oak barrels, the fresher, fruitier wines stored in stainless steel tanks.
 
In barrels, the wine becomes more robust and complex. Natural oxygenation occurs through
the wood staves
Staves : longitudinal piece of wood that is assembled to form a barrel.
in the barrel and intensifies the colour. The wood also complements the wine’s aromas and enhances its tannic structure.
 
At Domain Catleya, red wines are kept for 12 months in barrels and the barrels are used for a maximum of 3 years.

 
After fermentation, white and rosé wines are kept on their
fine lees
Lees : deposits of dead yeast after fermentation (Sur Lie: French term for a wine that is aged on its fine lees, meaning seeds, skins and other grape solids along with yeast cells).
, which are stirred regularly. This method enhances the wine’s smoothness and also helps it to stabilise.
 
In early spring, the wines are racked and bottled quickly to preserve freshness and the intensiveness of flavours.