The term "cuvee" (pronounced koo-VAY) originates from the French word "cuve," which refers to a vat or tank used for fermentation and aging of wine. In the context of winemaking, a wine cuvee can have different meanings depending on the region and the specific winemaking practices involved. Here are some interpretations of style-
- Blended Win - In some cases, cuvee is used to denote a wine that is a blend of different grape varieties or vineyard sources. Winemakers might carefully select specific grapes or wines from different vineyards to create a final blend that expresses a particular style or flavor profile. There is varied discussion on this and what it offer the wine maker and drinker. In areas of inconsistent yields and weather you may get a more balanced and consistent cuvee of a single varietal b carefully selecting a blend. Try the COYAM 8 varietal red blend from Solovino for a quality and well integrated blend
- Premium or Special Selection - In other instances, cuvee can be used to indicate that the wine is a special or premium selection. It may be made from the best grapes, aged longer, or undergo unique winemaking techniques, making it stand out from the winery's regular offerings. This would only be done for specific vintages that met the highest standards, and some wineries wont release certain cuvees unless they meet a premium criteria
- The starting point for a champagne Producer - In Champagne, for example, the term "cuvee" can be used to refer to the highest quality wine produced by a Champagne house as well as the initial "blend" identified for primary bottle fermentation. A cuvee refers to a specific selection of wine from a particular barrel or tank during the winemaking process. Winemakers may choose to separate certain portions of the wine for specific aging or blending purposes. Henners BRUT NV is a good example of CUVEE wine that has been selected according to the sum of its 3 parts.
Some producers have such unique varietals in very small blocks that they never make a cuvee and use only that one block varietal. The unique Strange Kompanjie Old vine Palomino is a good example of this