NEGELE conductivity meters for process control during tartar stabilization at Rotkäppchen-Mumm Sektkellereien GmbH
Rotkappchen-Mumm Sektkellereien, located in Freyburg at the Unstrut in Saxony-Anhalt in Germany, looks back on a long and eventful history of 150 years.
The company, founded in 1856, succeeded in integrating itself in the free market economy after the German reunification. In 1993, five managing employees, together with the Harald Eckes-Chantre family, took over the sparkling wine producer from the trust by means of a management buyout. By 2001, Rotkäppchen Sektkellerei was the market leader in sparkling wines. Its highly successful marketing strategy made it possible for the company to continuously expand its market share and to become the leading sparkling wine label in the region. Today, the company produces sparkling wines, still wines and spirits at 5 different locations. In Freyburg alone, around 150,000 bottles are filled every day.
Tartar refers to calcium salt (calcium tartrate) or potassium salt (potassium hydrogen tartrate), both of which can occur through the combination of tartaric acid with calcium or potassium.While this may be tolerable in still wines as an indicator of a high mineral content, the “wine diamonds” are undesirable in sparkling wines.Apart from visible quality impairments, the crystals in this case lead to “gushing”, the uncontrolled, profuse overflowing of foam when a bottle is uncorked.In addition to the concentrations of tartaric acid, potassium and calcium as well as the pH level and the alcohol content, temperature also plays an important role in the crystallization process. The lower the temperature, the lower the solubility – and a lower solubility leads to the precipitation of tartar. Therefore, one of the ways to stabilize wine is to accelerate crystallization through cooling and the addition of tartar crystals, which act as crystal seeds and promote the precipitation of tartar (so-called contact method).