The University Hall, once used for lectures on varietal oenology, is today the ideal environment in which to share research, intuitions and experiences gained in the field, and the undertaking of new research, analysing results and future perspectives.
Equipped with specific "accessories" to make dynamic lessons and/or group tastings (up to 50 seats), the Hall caters for meetings with producers, lessons for Masters and, above all, dialogue with the oenologists of the cellar who are the fundamental pillars in constructing the mosaic that is the hallmark of quality wine.
In this environment there is one driving force; the desire is to find solutions to real problems, to outline innovative paths and to engage in an enriching exchange of ideas.
Thanks to the artistic triptych on "life" by Baratella (1986), the classroom is also a setting conferring grandeur and beauty.
In short, the University Hall is the place and the medium through which knowledge and know how is disseminated.
The Psychedelic Laboratory
The Psychedelic Laboratory, so called because infrared lights turn on and switch off, maintaining small containers for fermentation at the desired temperature, is a room kept at low temperature, designed and built for comparative studies on various types of yeasts and approaches to fermentation.
The Laboratory characteristics allow for the study of fermentation kinetics and the ability of a yeast to bring out the characteristics of a specific grape and a particular terroir.
The Psychedelic Laboratory can be viewed as an environment and a structure that goes beyond reality and consciousness, leading us to a visionary time and space, in which yeast’s dream will be fulfilled; to be the perfect interpreter of the wine varietal and terroir.
The Virtual Winery
It is a technological room, in which the phenomena of wine are communicated through images mixing actual reality with the virtual one. Images of vineyards, grapes and processing phases alternate with formulas and graphic representations of the phenomena, in a succession of wine making, maturation and ageing processes, in which the molecules appear, form and intertwine.
It is in the Virtual Cellar that the images of the past merge with those of the future, in a kaleidoscope of colours, lights and shapes.
In the centre, bathed in a pool of light, reigns the prototype "Genesis" a wine maker designed by Donato Lanati, whose features evoke the Star Wars robot.
Built for adults, the Virtual Cellar is a place of experience and knowledge suitable even for the little ones.
Ancient Winery and Infernot
The cellar, after the restoration works, remains faithful to the original structure dating back to the seventeenth century. From its interior you can reach the Infernot, expressing the typical hypogean vernacular architecture of Monferrato, excavated in the sands of Asti, for the aging of wines. Infernot for the Langhe-Roero and Monferrato Wine Landscape Unesco Heritage.
The Experimental Winery
Every winemaker dreams of having a small cellar, in which they can experiment with various techniques, without fear of causing too much damage.
But this is no ordinary cellar; it is a super-equipped cellar, monitored with temperature controls, equipped with cold rooms and inert gases and in which oxygen can be used or excluded, at least partially.
It is a cellar where wine is made manually or indeed with software programs, which manage pumping over, temperatures and issue a warning at the end of the cycle and/or in the event of emergencies.
It is in this cellar that rosé wines were studied, with colours ranging from onion skin pink to increasingly more intense ones, photographing, by way of CIElab coordinates, the varied subtle intense nuances, so as to objectively reproduce them again in subsequent harvests.
Winemaking, refinements, and new technologies can be envisaged, as well the possibility to design and test new cellar instruments.
The Enosis Experimental Cellar is a laboratory of ideas and innovations, in which projects for new wines or patents are born.
What was once the Cascina's old cattle stalls, is now the Multi-purpose Room – a thrilling area that hosts meetings and events. Like all the other large rooms, it is connected to the main areas of Enosis by an audio-visual system.
The microbiology of wine studies all those phenomena concerning the transformations, carried out by yeasts and bacteria, in musts and wines. Enosis pays particular attention to the kinetics of alcoholic and malolactic fermentation, during which several fundamental substances guaranteeing quality are formed. Of particular importance, moreover, is the search for the most suitable yeast to enhance the characteristics of that varietal wine, in that particular terroir and in that particular vintage, as well as the identification of lactic bacteria, suitable for conducting malolactic fermentations, according to the conditions of the wines in the various cellars.
Personalized study tests on yeasts are fundamental for the production of sparkling wines.
Not all microorganisms are allies: some cause unpleasant changes and aromas. Being able to intercept them before they present problems is important, as is being able to assess the microbiological stability of bottled wines.
The main instrument in the microbiological laboratory is the microscope, particularly suitable for those with the spirit of observation, eager to look ahead towards the future, observing and anticipating future developments.
With the presence of Brettanomyces, ethyl phenols will certainly occur over time. In the case of acetic bacteria, if sulphur dioxide is not used, the result will be vinegar. Thanks to the microscope it is also possible to observe, for example, the precipitations of potassium bitartrate, calcium, and flocculated proteins
Quality Control Laboratory
In this laboratory, evaluations of both the parameters related to safety (legal limits), and those strictly related to the quality of the grapes and wines are carried out. We work in concert with the cellars, from the post-veraison period to the bottling and storage of wines.
Analysis of the technological and phenolic maturity of the grapes can be carried out quickly using an FT-IR system and UV-Vis spectrophotometry. During the fermentation processes, the analytical data of the samples received are sent to the cellars, providing precise indications on racking.
In the following stages, controls are carried out on the stability of the wines, the acidity, the clarity, and colour of the red wines, paying particular attention to the progress of the malolactic fermentation, up to bottling. This last phase is preceded by a targeted tasting, which will provide the latest information on the quality level of the wine.
Furthermore, in the C.Q. Laboratory, controls are implemented concerning the quality of corks and on new oenological products, verifying their effectiveness with comparison tests.
Research and Development Laboratory
The most innovative techniques available today in the analytical field are used in the R&D laboratory, such as gas chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry (GC/MS), liquid phase chromatography, with diode or fluorescence detectors (HPLC/DAD/FLD), and liquid chromatography, with mass spectrometry (LC/MS). Operational protocols aimed at specific objectives of applied research are implemented.
The GC/MS follows the evolution of the varietal aromatic profile of the grapes during the different phenological phases of the vine, until maturation. The analytical parameters of reference for the aromatic maturity of the grapes are also defined, studying the interactions between cultivars and the terroir in different vintages. In this way, by correlating these data with those of technological and polyphenolic maturity, the optimal time for the harvest can be identified.
Through the identification of specific analytical markers, using mass spectrometry, the aromatic profile of the wines is analysed during fermentation and aging. Even after long ageing, the analysis of the aromatic profile, correlated with other parameters, is indicative for evaluating the maintenance of the organoleptic characteristics of the wine over time. It is therefore possible to evaluate the shelf-life of a wine, within a range of analytical parameters deemed acceptable.
The GC/MS is also used in the analysis of organoleptic defects in wines, revealing the analytes at very low concentrations, with the aid of particularly sensitive techniques, such as the analysis of the headspace, with the aid of microfibres (SPME) or olfactometric analysis (GC-O), which offers specific indications on individual molecules.
With the HPLC/DAD and the LC/MS the anthocyanic varietal characterization of the red grapes and related wines is carried out. The interactions of anthocyanins with other molecules that lead to the formation of vitisins and pyranoanthocyanins are also evaluated, with tangible consequences on colour stability. From the acquisition of these analytical data relating to the anthocyanin profiles of wines, it is possible to observe the varietal traceability for wines made from single grape varieties (Sangiovese, Pinot Nero, Nebbiolo, etc.)
Studies on quercetin are carried out to evaluate the incidence of the cultivar and the terroir on its final concentration in wines, both in the free form and in the linked form. The analysis of mycotoxins, in particular Ochratoxin, is carried out by HPLC/FLD, a technique that offers a high specificity and sensitivity.
In the Tasting Room, artistically embellished by the four elements (air, fire, earth and water) designed by Baratella, the wines to be tasted arrive, after having passed 16 previous phases of study, accompanied by information and data.
In this room the numbers indicating quality are compared with the sensations of colour, brightness, taste, aftertaste, and bouquet.
In this phase, the senses "read" the wines and the impressions are reinterpreted on the basis of the numbers and the comparison figures in order to understand what the margins for improvement are.
The information is obtained 50% from the numbers and figures and 50% from the tasting.
The examination bench, for winemakers and producers, is therefore in the Tasting Room, around the glass table, whose design has at its basis the form of the wing of an airplane.
At this point, the teaching acquired from the dialogue between oenologist and producer will have been fundamental.
Objective oenology is expressed by numbers, at times, pitiless, and although Nature is a severe taskmaster, it still allows room for discussions and comparisons of tastes and ways of thinking.
It is in the Tasting Room that Enosis’ knowledge flows and grows.