Untouched by Light is the world’s first sparkling wine produced completely in the dark. It forms part of a project called “Turn to the dark side” by Slovenian winery Radgonske Gorice, which plans to make a first batch of 2000 bottles of the sparkling wine in 2020.
Darkness, an essential factor
Researchers and scientists from the field of oenology have conducted numerous studies to investigate the flavours, shelf life and quality of wine. Studies have shown that the absence of light on the wine during production and storage help it keep all its flavour qualities better and deteriorate much more slowly.
A study conducted in 2007 by the prestigious Geisenheim University, located in the Rheingau region, showed that white and rosé wine deteriorate significantly more in a clear glass bottle compared to a dark one. The wine bottled in clear glass suffered changes in terms of its aroma and deteriorated more quickly that another wine bottled in darkened glass.
Another very interesting study is the project published by the scientific American Journal of Enology and Viticultutre in 1989, where it was confirmed that fluorescent light also produces significant changes in the aroma of sparkling wine. Therefore, absolute darkness in the production of the wine would be an essential factor to achieve an exclusive, top-quality product.
The production process of an exclusive sparkling wine
In light of the results of these studies, the Slovenian winery Radgonske Gorice has produced a wine in complete darkness, to the point that the grapes are harvested on moonless nights and the conservation of the wine is performed by authorised personnel in complete darkness using night vision glasses. Once produced, it is bottled in black glass bottles and matured in the natural caves of Rasgona (Slovenia) in complete darkness for a period of three years. Finally, each bottle is vacuum-sealed in a black aluminium bag to protect it from the light and guarantee top quality.
Although it is not yet on sale and most of us haven’t been able to taste it yet, Untouched by Light has already become an exclusive, unique sparkling wine the world over which is sure to cause a sensation with kitchen professionals and international chefs, who will soon be able to use it to enrich their dishes and explore all types of pairing possibilities.