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Making homemade wine from grapes: from variety selection to bottling

Making homemade wine from grapes: from variety selection to bottling


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Wine belongs, perhaps, to the most ancient, very tasty and healthy grape drinks. Subject to all cooking processes, it retains the maximum amount of nutrients and vitamins. Properly prepared and high-quality wine based on natural raw materials can become a remedy for some ailments.

To create a truly tasty and aromatic drink, you can not use any variety of berries. For example, table varieties are not used in winemaking, as they do not allow you to get a harmonious taste and the desired finish.

The best varieties for winemaking

The most popular wine grape varieties are the following technical varieties:

  • Isabella, a hybrid of Vitis Labruska and Vitis Vinifera;
  • Merlot, or Merlot
  • medium-late Cabernet Sauvignon,
  • Chardonnay, or Chardonnay;
  • Sauvignon Blanc, or Sauignignon blanc;
  • Riesling, or Reessling;
  • Pinot Blanc, or Pinot blanc;
  • Pinot Noir or Pinot Noir.

For the manufacture of sweet wines, it is best to use nutmeg grape varieties, which most often grow in the climatic conditions of the southern regions and have optimal sugar content:

  • "Festival"
  • Stepnyak
  • Platovsky
  • "Regent",
  • Saperavi
  • "Crystal",
  • Lydia

Of course, a grape variety such as Lydia will need to add a little more sugar due to the insufficient natural sugar content of the berries.

Berry picking rules

In the process of making homemade natural wine, ripe grapes should be used. For the preparation of a dessert drink, the use of slightly overripe grapes is allowed, which has high sugar content. When picking berries, the following requirements should be observed:

  • the grapes are harvested on a clear, sunny day, and after three days of dry weather;
  • berries are picked to achieve the fullest maturity. It was at this time that grapes possessed a significant amount of sugars and optimal acidity;
  • in the northern wine-growing regions, berries contain less sugar, grapes should be picked a little later than the due date;
  • in the southern regions, grapes are harvested when berries are not fully ripened, which is optimal for producing quality wine.

Harvested grapes must be cleaned of substandard or unripe berries, as well as any impurities.

Homemade Isabella grape wine

Types of Homemade Wine

In terms of sugar content:

  • dry wines with sugar content not higher than 1%;
  • semi-dry with a sugar content of 2% or 3%;
  • dessert sweets, in which the sugar content can vary from 15% to 30%;
  • liquor with sugar content above 30%.

According to alcohol-containing indicators:

  • table light wines, in which the weight amount of alcohol varies from 6.5% to 8.75% and volume from 8% to 11%;
  • strong dining rooms, in which the weight amount of alcohol is from 9.75% to 11.5%, and the volume is from 12% to 14%;
  • strong with a weight amount of alcohol from 16%, and volumetric from 18% to 20%.

Homemade wines such as dessert and cider are distinguished into separate categories. A certain difficulty for a beginner winemaker may be the independent production of dry and semi-dry wines.

Homemade Wine Recipes

Winemakers use Isabella grapes to make grapes. About five kilograms of sugar is used for five kilograms of berries of this variety, and after seven days, twelve liters of water should be added. However, at present, there are more interesting recipes that are advantageous in terms of taste, in which both pure grape juice and ready-made grape wine are used:

  • Polish table. In the manufacture of sugar is replaced by raisins, which is required to take twice as much as the required amount of sugar.
  • Hungarian For 5 kg of white raisins, poured into a container, 6 liters of finished wine are used. The resulting mixture should be infused in a warm place for two days, after which yeast is added, and the container is hermetically sealed and placed for twelve months in the ground.
  • Clove. In a container with finished wine, place a canvas bag with crushed cloves. After fermentation, the finished beverage should be poured into standard storage containers.
  • Nutmeg. Place a canvas bag with sage seeds and elderberry flowers in a container with young wine at the fermentation stage for ten days. Then remove the bag, and pour the finished drink into bottles.
  • Apple. In a container with grape juice at the fermentation stage, you should lower the apples, which must be regularly replaced with fresh ones before the end of the fermentation process.

There are other recipes for making or improving the taste of wine. However, most recipes are based on traditional technology that has been used for many years.

Features of manufacturing technology

Classic grape wine is made in accordance with a certain technology, which allows you to get a traditional and very high quality drink.

Cookware and Tool Requirements

  • Important completely protect berry juice and wine from contact with any metal surfaces, including copper and tinned lead. In winemaking, glass, wooden, clay or enameled dishes and tools should be used.
  • It is allowed to use dishes made of food-grade plastic that do not react with wine alcohols.
  • The containers and tools used in winemaking must be impeccably clean and dry. When preparing and washing, neutral detergents should be used, which must be thoroughly rinsed with running water.
  • Wooden containers are previously fumigated with sulfur.

Keep in mind that the best option is to use glass containers of different volumes.

Getting juice

Using the "red method" red wines are made, and the "white method" is suitable for the preparation of white. The highest quality and lightest wines are obtained from grape juice obtained as a result of gravity. Pressing or crushing of the feedstock is allowed.

Most often, the juice from the pulp is extracted using wine presses or juicers, the metal parts of which are made of stainless steel. The resulting juice should be poured into containers, occupying no more than 75 percent of the total volume and covered with gauze. The resulting liquid must be left for fermentation in a dry, warm and dark place for five days. The pulp layer formed on the surface should be broken to prevent mold.

Important remember that for making red wines, the pulp and juice are fermented together, and for a white drink, the juice should be separated from the pulp.

It is recommended to mix the mixture of pulp and juice at least three times a day.

Wort and fermentation conditions

After three or five days, the pulp pops up, and the winemaker can only filter. If you extend the period of aging of the wort, the wine will get a more astringent and most saturated taste.

To obtain a sweet wine, sugar is added portionwise to juice strained from the pulp in the first week at the fermentation stage. The amount of sugar depends on how sweet it is desirable to get the output, and may vary depending on the sugar content of the feedstock and personal preferences.

Ripening process

  • Filtered grape juice with sugar after fermentation should be poured into prepared clean bottles and closed with a nylon cover or punctured in several places with a rubber surgical glove. In this way, carbon dioxide is expelled and oxygen is blocked from access to wine.
  • Bottles with liquid should be placed in a dark place with a temperature regime not lower than ten degrees of heat. The higher the temperatures, the faster the maturation of the wine.
  • At this stage, it is very important to carry out a straining weekly, which will insure the drink from spoiling the taste as a result of the activity of the precipitate.
  • After about a month and a half, the drink stops bubbling, which indicates the complete readiness of the wine.

Cream of tartar

Quite often, one can observe the formation of tartar, which is a crystalline precipitate and precipitates during the production of a drink in the presence of alcoholic fermentation, as well as in the aging and processing stages.

Tartar can give the wine a rude aftertaste, and its removal will improve the taste and make the drink more tender. To remove tartar, it is enough to withstand the wine until spill at a temperature of + 4 degrees for several months, and then drain the liquid, leaving a sediment at the bottom of the tank.

Tartar can be used to attract crystals in a quenched wine. Exposure in the cold is a prerequisite for getting rid of the drink from such an accumulation.

You may also be interested in an article in which we talk about the secrets and recipes for making wine from various fruits and berries.

Tips & Tricks

Wine from grapes at home, the recipes of which are given above, turns out to be of excellent quality, taking into account some of the nuances of production:

  • young wine after full maturity should be bottled for long-term storage in wine bottles for aging. Red wine should be stored in tinted bottles, and white wine is bottled in transparent bottles;
  • for corking, both natural cork from oak bark and a plastic analogue can be used. The distance from the cork to the wine should be no more than two centimeters;
  • the corked bottleneck should be filled with sealing wax or covered with a special thermocap;
  • the storage room should have a constant temperature of 6 to 8 ºะก and humidity indicators at the level of 60%. You can store sweet and liquor wine in a dark room at room temperature;
  • wine can be stored in table racks, in hanging wine racks, as well as in special compartments for storing wines at home and in floor racks or minibars.

How to make homemade dry wine

Self-production allows you to show your imagination, and through experimentation you can get a very individual and unusual wine. Most winemakers make some changes to the basis of technology and apply small tricks.


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