Prepare Grapes For Fermentation
After the harvest, grapes head to the winery. The winemaker decides whether or not to remove the stems or to ferment grape bunches as whole clusters.
This is an important choice because leaving stems in the fermentation adds astringency but also reduces sourness. As an example, Pinot Noir often ferments with whole clusters, but not Cabernet Sauvignon.
During this step, grapes also receive sulfur dioxide to stop bacterial spoilage before the fermentation starts. Check out this eye-opening article about sulfites and your health.
Red Winemaking Breaks Out Into Handy Steps:
- Before fermentation processing
- Malolactic Fermentation
Before fermentation, with these freshly harvest grapes, grapes commonly undergo destemming and crushing. Destemming removes grapes from their stems. The stems of some grapes, when fully ripe, can provide tasty, beneficial tannins. However, unripe stems taste bitter and are best left off. Stems also tend to have a diluting effect on tannin and color when included in the maceration, and slow fermentation .
Modern destemming machines are essentially large, perforated, horizontal cylinders which operate on a sieve principle like coin separating machines. Holes are big enough for grapes to pass through, leaving the newly naked stems tumbling inside until they exit the tube. The cylinder rotates, grapes pass through the holes to be collected and stems funnel out the end.
Liberated grapes make their way to fermentation vessels . The transit aids in the gentle crushing of the grapes, encouraging them to release their juices and mingle in the vats.
After destemming, when the mass to ferment is in its designated fermentation vessel, most winemakers add a bit of sulfur dioxide to save us from mysterious wild yeasts pre-emptively starting the ferment. This also saves the must from bacteria and oxygen-loving enzymes.
Winemakers can adjust acidity and sugar content levels at this stage.
Grape Harvest The Funniest Step In Wine Making Process
Grape harvest is a sacrosanct tradition in Sicily. When you visit Santa Ninfa, our hometown, in the summer, you will find many young and old men harvesting grapes in spite of the very hot summer temperatures.
It is touching to see two, often three generations all engaged together in harvesting. When we tell you that this is a sacred tradition for Sicilians, that is exactly what we mean.
The grape harvest time largely depends on the grape variety. White grapes are generally harvested in August :
- Muller Turgau variety in the first ten days of August whereas
- Viognier at the end of August.
- Catarratto variety, despite being a white grape, is picked in the second half of September.
With regard to red grapes, instead, they are generally picked in the first ten days of September.
The harvesting time is more or less a fixed rule but it obviously depends on the kind of year and on the climate that affects the ripening times of the grapes.
Papa Vince Wine harvesting is done exclusively by hand, putting grapes inside big crates.
You should know that most winemakers harvest grapes with machines that accelerate the harvest but ruin grapes causing them to become overheated and crushed. As a result, the grapes will begin to ferment early and will lose many of their organoleptic properties.
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Human Intervention Plays A Big Role In Determining The Style Of A Wine Through The Steps Of The Winemaking Process Ill Examine The Major Decisions Involved
When I began my journey into wine, I was amazed to discover that every decision in the winemaking process affects the style, taste and even its price. I like an analytical approach , therefore I enjoyed studying all the facets and nuances of winemaking.
Maybe you just like drinking wine and you cannot see why you should be be bothered with the technicalities behind its production. Nonetheless, knowing the basics of the winemaking process can help you predict how a wine will taste and why.
The elements that affect wine style can be roughly divided into two macro-categories:
- Nature: the factors defining the vine growing environment
- Humans: viticultural and winemaking decisions
In a previous article I covered the natural elements affecting wine style. Here, I will outline the human-based decisions and their impact. Since there is a lot to cover, I will divide this article into two parts.
The human factors influencing the nature and the taste of a wine are countless. Although none of these factors are trivial, I will focus on the most important.
Lets start with a basic definition of winemaking by Wikipedia:
Winemaking is the production of wine, starting with the selection of the fruit, its fermentation into alcohol, and the bottling of the finished liquid.
Definition of winemaking according to Wikipedia
The winemaking process with an infographic
The following infographic details the major steps of winemaking.
Grape sorting and destemming
How To Make Red Dragon Fruit Wine
If you are looking for a sweet, fruity, refreshing wine as a dessert, dragon fruit wine is probably the best one to have. The best thing is that you can make this wine at home. You just need to ferment the dragon fruit extract, and you are all set to have this tasty wine at the tip of your tongue.
The best part of dragon fruit wine is that it tastes sweet, but it also has a tannin flavor that makes it exquisite. Even if the red dragon fruit is not sweet enough, you can add sugar to balance the taste. This wine tastes the best when it is paired with chocolate and cheese.
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Should I Use Campden Tablets In This Wine
Campden tablets are a frequently used additive in homemade wine that are used to sterilize wine at various stages during the winemaking process. They kill off all the yeast and bacteria.
Many people use them to stop fermentation before its complete if they want to achieve a certain level of sweetness. Some people add them to the wine just before bottling to make certain fermentation is over to avoid making bottle bombs.
I personally do not use Campden tablets. Mostly because I just dont find that I need them in my winemaking process, but also because I enjoy including wild yeasts and bacteria in my creations. There are tons of resources on the internet about using Campden tablets if sterilization is of interest to you.
How Rum Is Distilled
Once the sugar cane juice has been sufficiently fermented into a wash, it is ready to be distilled into rum. Distillation is a varied and complex process that may incorporate a range of different approaches.
While different producers may have their own cultural or individual techniques, distilling rum usually consist of either a combination or one of the following:
You can either use the links above to jump ahead or scroll down to read about them both.
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Rum Copper Pot Stills
The traditional alembic is an Arabic invention that was introduced to Europe following the Umayyad conquest of Hispania during the 8th Century.
Although it had undergone many improvements before it was introduced to the Americas during the Spanish Conquest, the approach is still used for distilling sugar cane juice into rum.
A copper pot still works by heating low-proof alcohol in what is essentially a large kettle covered by a head called an ambix. As alcohol has a lower boiling point than water, it turns to vapour while water remains liquid at the right temperature of around 78°C.
The vapour will then rise through a long tube in the ambix, which cools and condenses it back into a liquid.
Good rum produced from a traditional copper pot still requires a significant level of skill. Although it provides the master distiller more control, only a small portion of the distillate is safe for consumption.
Indeed, a single distillation run consists of the following yields:
- Foreshot: The first 5% of distillate that contains some of the most toxic and volatile impurities such as methanol.
- Heads/High Wines: Distillate with volatile compounds such as acetone.
- Cut/Heart: Consisting mostly of ethanol, the most palatable part of the run.
- Tails/Low Wines: The least volatile components consisting mostly of thin-tasting fusel oils.
The Adam Rum Copper Pot Still
How Wine Is Made Step By Step It Depends On The Grapes
If you want to learn every single step of how wine is made you need to read these pieces of information carefully.
To simplify the explanation, we start by listing the most important steps of how wine is made:
As you can see, there are many steps to follow in the winemaking processes and this is a list of only the most important ones.
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Aging And Bottling The Wine
Aging the wine is one of the final stages of the process. There are two options for the winemakers in this stage: to bottle the wine or give it additional aging. Aging or cellaring the wine means storing it in an oak barrel for some time, allowing it to improve its taste.
Not all wines will benefit for aging. Thats why some of the wines are bottled right away and some of them are stored to make the wine flavours more intense. Wines that have an aging potential are the ones with high level of tannins which is mostly red wines.
How To Make Rice Wine
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Rice wine is a delicious addition to all sorts of East Asian recipes. Sometimes its savory, sometimes its sweet, and it can be enjoyed on its own as a strong, unique-tasting drink. Making your own rice wine only requires two ingredients, but it does take time to ferment. With a little patience, youll be rewarded with a delicious, versatile wine that you can use with your cooking or sip on by itself.
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To Make 5 Gallons Of Sweet White Wine:
We will use the same instructions we used for the dry white wine above with some slight variations. I like to have a soft-slightly sweet finish in most of my white wines.
Things to keep in Mind…
- You can mix and match any of the grape varieties to make some very unique wines.
- Sometimes the fruitier grapes are better picked slightly underripe – the flavor will not be as strong.
- If you want a sweeter – high alcohol wine, the easiest way to do it is to start off with more sugar and keep adding it in small amounts throughout the fermentation. Eventually the alcohol will kill the yeast and leave some residual sugar. If you add too much at once the wine may be too sweet. At any time during the fermentation, taste the wine – if it is dry add sugar until it is sweet again. Repeat this until it does not ferment anymore.
- Another way to make a sweet wine is to ferment the wine dry, sometimes using a yeast such as Cote des Blancs that does not like high alcohol. After the wine is stable, I sweeten it to taste, add 1 to 1.25 grams/gallon Potassium Sorbate, 2 cambden tablets per gallon and rack it. If it does not re-ferment I bottle it after a few months.
- A third way to make a sweet wine is to sweeten the wine and then filter out the yeast cells with a wine filter and it will not re-ferment. A wine filter can be a usefull tool.
Why Are We Doing This Twice
MLF. ML. Malo. Secondary fermentation. Whatever you call it, please know that its not alcoholic fermentation. Malolactic Fermentation is incredibly common in red wines. Indeed, there are some winemakers who would dare you to try and stop it. Lactic Acid Bacteria take malic acid and convert it to lactic acid .
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What Drink Gives You Least Hangover
But a study by the British Medical Journal found that vodka is actually the least likely drink to give you a hangover: its so pure that it contains virtually no congeners. Mixing vodka with soda or fruit juice is ideal, as sugary soft drinks can contribute to a headache the morning after the night before.
Every Winemaker Has Their Own Harvest Style
Its important to keep in mind that there can be many other things that happen along the way. Things like the type of yeast, the size and kind of fermentation tank, whether or not to add nutrients, co-fermenting certain grape varieties, whole cluster fermentation or de-stemming, pump overs or punch downs, how often to test the product during the process, what kind of lab analysis is required, amount of production, and so much more. Wine making is both art and science. Its testing and re-testing not only by empirical data, but by taste and feel. Using the science available to you is only one part of the equation. It takes a passion for the work and some intuition to make great wine and of course, a lot of hard work!
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Winemaking: How Is Wine Made
Making wine is actually a much easier process than one might expect. Although winemaking is a skill that predates most recorded history, many wine aficionados do not understand the basic process. This article attempts to break down the winemaking process into five simple steps for transforming vineyard grapes into delicious wine:
Boil The Salt Sugar And Water
Now, you need to boil the water in a cooking pot. Once it starts to boil, pour the salt and sugar in it too. When you see the salt and sugar dissolved in the water, you can pour the dragon fruit juice into the mixture.
After you pour the juice into the water, its time to stir the mixture well. Use a large spoon and give it 2-3 rounds to stir the mix, and pasteurize it well. Lift the pot off the stove immediately when you are done with the rounds.
You may see some bubbles around the corner of the mixture. Its not a good sign, but its pretty standard. So, just scoop those bubbles out with the spoon. Now, stir the mixture for a few seconds off the stove to incorporate all the ingredients well.
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The Difference Between White Red And Rose Fermentation
At this step in the wine making process, white wine and red wine diverge on different paths. White grapes jump ahead to the press. Red grapes go through maceration. Red grapes that have very little contact with the grape skins make pink colored wines.
The next 2 wine making steps are happening simultaneously.
Cutting And Blending The Dragon Fruit
You can cut the dragon fruit with a knife and put the pieces in the mixer. The juice that youll get will still have a good source of making the dragon fruit wine. However, the centerpiece holds the tastiest extract, and that may get spoiled in this process.
You can also use a blender to blend the dragon fruit. It will indeed have much pulp in the end product, but you can filter that out later. So, it will be another effective way of preparing the dragon fruit to make the wine.
If you use a juicer machine, you can filter the pulp and the juice right there. Then, when you collect the pulp separately, you can add yogurt or banana as a sweetener to the wine. So, for 1.5 kg of dragon fruit, youll get approximately 800 ml of juice.
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Faq Often Asked Questions About Wine Making
How long does wine take to make?
It takes from 2 to 8 weeks to make wine. First 10 to 15 days for the fermentation, and then filtering and clearing in 1 to 6 weeks.
After that, You could drink the wine, but You would often want to store it for at least 1 month for aging, and up to several years, before the taste is like you want it. But it will drinkable in just about 2-8 weeks
Testing And Straining The Rice Wine
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