Feng Shui Around the Winery
Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese concept where the design of a space can ensure harmony and positive energy or if poorly done and ignored negative energy. With the help of Chilean Feng Shui expert Silvia Galleguillos, the partners in Vina Montes, Aurelio Montes, Douglas Murray, Alfredo Vidaurre and Pedro Grand, designed the beautiful winery using all the prime materials of Feng Shui – stone, water, metal and wood.
“At the entrance of the winery, a wooden access bridge crosses a small lagoon, whose water flows towards the building in accordance with the fundamental principle of Feng Shui, that prosperity will only come if the water, representing energy, flows towards the center of the building, not away from it. At the center of the winery a fountain lies directly under a lily-shaped skylight, representing the sun and moon: the point from which energy is distributed, connecting the building to the outside universe.”
Cymatics in the Barrel Room
Cymatics is the scientific concept that vibrations can alter molecular make up. Vina Montes took this concept and applied it to their French Barrel Room. Inside the semi-circular underground room you will find 800 French oak barrels strategically placed in concentric half rings to look like a theater stage. Gregorian chants echo through the room to help the wine along, so to speak.
Gravity in the Vat Room
In line with the idea that manipulation can change wine, the processing technology used in the vat room was designed around gravity. Using the natural flow of gravity rather than pumps prevents the grapes from being overly handled and therefore breaking the skins and seeds in the juice. Tannins are held in the skins, seeds and stems and releasing them increases the tannic level of the wine.
“Avoiding pumps and opting for gravity allows us to give wine first-class treatment. From the moment harvested grapes are crushed on the receiving area of the roof, their juice is moved by gravity, falling through grooves in the roof to the fermentation tanks below. Not forced around by pumps, the delicacy of the must is kept intact, preserving gentle flavors, and the softest tannins. A unique elevator comprising a large stainless steel tank can give us the depth of fall needed to transfer wine around the cellar, without one single pump.”
So does doing all this actually make their wine taste better? Who knows. It definitely taste wonderful, but without scientific experimentation it’s really hard to know. I guess the only thing we can really do is sit back and enjoy the fruits of their labour. Literally!