Image via Wikipedia
Wine made from fermented grapes naturally contains malic acid. To produce some desired qualities, winemakers can induce a secondary fermentation to convert the naturally occurring malic acid into lactic acid.
The conversion is caused by bacteria and can occur naturally, but more commonly the bacteria is added by the winemaker. MLF is frequently used to reduce the sharp edges of cool climate Chardonnay. A rounder, fuller mouthfeel is one benefit of MLF. Wines undergoing MLF are often described as creamy with an improved body.
So next time you are enjoying a creamy, buttery Chardonnay, you can impress your friends by asking, “I wonder if the winemaker used malolactic fermentation?”