The Complete Grape Growing System

The Complete Grape Growing System

The Complete Grape Growing System developed by Danie Wium is an excellent guide with comprehensive details to assist the enthusiast grape grower in achieving a successful outcome for years. It's designed for the absolute newbie but also contains information even the most experienced grape grower can use to boost their own grape farm. This book is so well written that even a person with no knowledge at all about growing grapes can easily understand and follow the directions given. The drawings and photographs are excellent and make this a very user friendly book indeed. The written work is very easy to understand and is not complicated by a lot of scientific jargon. Danie is a professional grape grower and has put together a course to help people grow grapes at home. His course also includes a video series that shows professional tips all recorded on his own farm. I recommend anyone considering growing their own grapes to buy this e-book. Read more...

The Complete Grape Growing System Summary


4.7 stars out of 12 votes

Contents: Ebook
Author: Danie Wium
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My The Complete Grape Growing System Review

Highly Recommended

All of the information that the author discovered has been compiled into a downloadable book so that purchasers of The Complete Grape Growing System can begin putting the methods it teaches to use as soon as possible.

As a whole, this manual contains everything you need to know about this subject. I would recommend it as a guide for beginners as well as experts and everyone in between.

Grape Growing And Making Your Own Signature Wine

Here's just a taste of what you'll discover: A complete guide to selecting the perfect location and setting up your vineyard. The 4 factors you Must consider before you plant your grapes. The types of grapes you plant determine the type of wine youll eventually have. Learn how to determine which grapes are best for you! Learn the single most important factor that determines the quality of your wine grapes and how to preserve it! The importance of three climate factors in growing grapes. The more than 40 types of grapes that are suitable for wine making. The 5 essential aspects of ensuring healthy, vibrant grapes (and in turn delicious wine). Without these, your venture just cant succeed. An entire chapter devoted to vineyard care, starting with the first year of cultivation. The 5 most efficient ways to control weeds in your vineyard. A complete guide to disease and pest control practices for your vineyard. Vital information on vineyard design and layout. The 5 basic sure-fire steps to creating a perfect bottle of wine. All the necessary tools youll need for wine making. A complete list of all the wine making ingredients youll need for the process. An entire chapter devoted to harvesting grapes for the wine making process. A crash course on the role acidity plays in the ultimate taste and success of your wine. All about the process of alcoholic fermentation, including a guide to its two essential ingredients. What malolcatic fermentation is and the effects it has on wine. The importance of racking and what it ultimately means to the quality of your wine. How oxygen affects the taste of your wine. An entire chapter devoted the two principle methods of producing white wines. The variety of sweeteners you can use in your wine making process and those you cant! An entire chapter devoted solely to the creation of red wines from the picking of the grapes to the final process. The two types of wine presses and which one is the better choice for you. How to properly transfer pressed wine to your storage vessel and why settling is an essential part of the process.

Grape Growing And Making Your Own Signature Wine Summary

Contents: 121 Page Ebook
Author: Kacy Waters
Official Website:

Fermented Foods and Human History

Fermented foods were very likely among the first foods consumed by human beings.This was not because early humans had actually planned on or had intended to make a particular fermented food, but rather because fermentation was simply the inevitable outcome that resulted when raw food materials were left in an otherwise unpreserved state.When,for example, several thousands of years ago, milk was collected from a domesticated cow, goat, or camel, it was either consumed within a few hours or else it would sour and curdle, turning into something we might today call buttermilk.A third possibility, that the milk would become spoiled and putrid, must have also occurred on many occasions. Likewise, the juice of grapes and other fruits would remain sweet for only a few days before it too would be transformed into a pleasant, intoxicating wine-like drink. Undoubtedly, these products provided more than mere sustenance they were also probably well enjoyed for aesthetic or organoleptic...

Cultures for Fermentation of Vegetables Fruits and Grains

Plant fermentations involve either lactic acid, acetic acid, or alcoholic fermentation or a combination of these fermentation types. In alcoholic fermentation, it is mainly yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) and fungi (Aspergillus oryzae) that participate however, lactobacilli and Pediococcus can also be involved. This fermentation is described in more detail in Sec. IV. Acetic acid fermentation, used for production of vinegar, is a two-stage fermentation process in which the first stage includes an alcoholic fermentation followed by the oxidization of ethanol via acetaldehyde to acetic acid (29). The typical raw materials are grapes, potatoes, or rice. Different subspecies of Acetobacter (A. acati, A. pasteurianus, and A. hansenii) and Gluconobacter oxydans are used for vinegar production. Pure cultures are not widely employed in the acetic acid fermentation industry (29,30). Interestingly, Nanda et al. (31) found that the Acetobacter strain responsible for the rice vinegar ''Ko-mesu''...

Wine Manufacture Principles

Making wine, as far as the actual steps are concerned, looks to be a rather simple and straightforward process (Figure 10-3). Grapes are harvested and crushed, the crushed material or juice is fermented by yeasts and bacteria, the organisms and insoluble materials are removed, and the wine is aged and bottled. In reality, the process is far from easy, and each of these pre-fermentation, fermentation, and post-fermentation steps must be carefully executed if high-quality wine is to be consistently produced.

Phenols Tannins and Pigments

Among the most important naturally occurring substances in grapes and musts are the phenolic and polyphenolic compounds. Some phenols can also be introduced into the wine following aging in wooden casks or via yeast and bacterial metabolism.These chemically diverse compounds contribute color, flavor, aroma, and

Nitrogenous Compounds

Grapes contain both inorganic and organic sources of nitrogen.Total nitrogen concentrations in grapes (or musts) range from about 0.2 g L to 0.4 g L.The ammonium nitrogen is less than 0.1 g L. Despite their relatively low concentration in juice, the nitrogen content of most musts is generally adequate for rapid growth of yeasts. In fact, the primary role of nitrogen in wine appears to be as a nutrient source for the yeasts, rather than affecting any of the organoleptic or other properties of the wine, per se. Moreover, wine yeasts can assimilate free ammonia into amino acids and can, therefore, use ammonia directly as a source of nitrogen. Nonetheless, nitrogen deficiency can occasionally occur, and is one of the main causes for sluggish or stuck fermentations. Some wine makers, therefore, routinely add ammonium salts to the must, in the form of a yeast food (especially for those occasions when the grapes are deficient in nitrogen). The main organic nitrogen-containing compounds are...

Viticulture and Grape Science

The starting material for most wines, as noted above, is grapes.The main wine grape grown in temperate zones throughout the world is Vitis vinifera. Another grape, Vitis labrusca, grows well in northern regions in the United States and is frequently used for Concord varieties. It is important to note that, despite the existence of only a few major grape species, there are many different grape cultivars grown throughout the world. For example, Cabernet Sauvi-gnon, Chardonnay, Gamay, Mission, Gewurz-traminer, Grenache, and Sangiovese all refer to different varieties or cultivars of the V vinifera grape. These grapes not only have different compositions, sugar contents, and pigmentation, they also grow better in different climates and soils and are used for different types of wine. Thus, most Bordeaux wines (those produced in the Bordeaux region of France) are made from the grapes that grow well in that region, namely Cabernet Sauvignon. Those same grapes, however, can be grown in...

Fermentation of the Mash

In the manufacture of wine no ferment is directly added to the must, but it has been found that germs of the alcoholic ferments which subsequently grow and produce the wine adhere to the outside of the skin and stalks of the grape and in that way enter the liquid when the grapes are crushed. The common ferment of wine is Saccharomyces ellipsoi-deus, but other species are also found, such as S. pastorianus, S. exiguus, S. Conglomera-tus, and Carpozyma apiculatum. The following are the average dimensions of these species We have here a process of fermentation which resembles the wine fermentation in the fact that no ferment has been knowingly added by the brewer, and which belongs to the class called spontaneous fermentations. By that term of course it is not meant that the living organisms have been generated spontaneously, without any forefathers, but only that they have appeared without intentional sowing. As the theory that living organisms are produced without the intervention of...

The History Of Corn Whiskey

In the years leading up to the migration of the Scotch-Irish to the American frontier in the 1700s, the early Americans began making wine from pumpkins, grapes, currants, elderberries, and parsnips. Indeed, it appeared there was no fruit or grain that was not grist for the mill to satisfy the colonists' desire for fermented and or distilled spirits. They were distilling ardent spirits from blackberries, persimmons, plums, whortleberries, sassafras bark, birch barks, corn stalks, hickory nuts, pumpkins, the pawpaw, turnips, carrots, potatoes, and small grains.

Sulfur and Nitrogen Metabolism

Although metabolism of carbohydrates is obviously critical to the outcome of the wine fermentation, metabolism of other must components is also important. How wine yeasts metabolize sulfur-containing compounds that are present in the must as normal grape constituents is particularly important. Most of the sulphur in grapes is in the form of elemental sulfur, sulfates, or as sulfur-containing amino acids. Since the range of sulfur-containing metabolic end products includes various sulfides, mercaptans, and other volatile compounds, sulfur metabolism can have a profound influence on wine quality.Yeasts can also produce sulfites, which, as already mentioned, have antimicrobial activity. In fact, even if sulfur dioxide or sulfite salts are not intentionally added, wine invariably contains sulfite due to its production by wine yeast. Grapes usually contain sufficient ammonia, ammonium salts, and free amino acids to support good growth of most wine yeasts. In addition, wine yeasts can...

Wine Spoilage and Defects

It can reasonably be said that as many things that can go right during wine manufacture, just as many can go wrong. The risk is exacerbated by the considerable investment that must be made to produce the wine (thus the old joke How does one make a million dollars in the wine business Start with 2 million). Grapes must be cultivated over several seasons before a reasonable crop can be harvested. Disease, climate, insects, and other factors can cause serious problems even before the first grape has been harvested and crushed. Once wine making begins, growth of desirable yeast and bacteria and inhibition of others is not always easy to manage. Finally, aging of wine may result in a product ranging from truly spectacular to totally undrinkable.

Sulfur Dioxide Treatment

Tegrity of the grapes has been compromised by the crushing step, the sugars in the juice are liberated and made available for whatever microorganisms happen to be present. Ordinarily, the must is populated by epiphytic yeasts (that is, yeasts that reside on the surface of the grapes) and by yeasts that have contaminated the crushers, presses, and other wine-making equipment. Although the surface of a single grape may contain only about 102 to 104 yeast cells, after the grapes have been exposed to the contaminated equipment, the number of cells increases about 100-fold, to about 104 to 106 cells per ml. Whether this resident microflora actually commences a fermentation, however, depends on the intent of the wine maker. Like all of the fermented products described in this text,wines were made for thousands of years before scientists recognized that microorganisms were responsible for the fermentation. In contrast to dairy, meat, and other food fermentations, where first backslopping,...

Wine Fermentation Tanks Mail

Grapes The importance of sound viticulture as a precursor to wines of excellence is unequivocally accepted as a truth in wine making companies worldwide. More so than for beer is the belief held that it is not possible to make an excellent product unless there is similar excellence in the source of fermentable carbohydrate. Most wineries tend to grow their own grapes or buy them from nearby vineyards. The ideal climate for growing wine grapes is where there is no summer rain, it is hot or at least warm during the day, there are cool nights and little risk of frost damage. The great grape-growing and wine regions are listed in Table 3.1. A benchmark figure for the yield of wine from one metric ton of grapes would be around 140-160 gal. As red grapes are fermented on the skins and therefore are less demanding in the pressing stage, the yield is some 20 higher than for whites. Picking Grapes Wine grapes belong to the genus Vitis. Within the genus, the main species are vinifera (by far...

The Spagyrical Anatomy Of Water

Vegetables are produced out of water, as you may clearly see by the waters sending forth plants that have no roots fixed in the bottom, of which sort is the herb called duckweed which puts forth a little string into the water which is as it were the root thereof. For the confirmation of this, that this herb may be produced out of mere water, there is a gentleman at this time in the city, of no small worth, that says he had fair water standing in a glass diverse years, and at last a plant sprang out of it. Also, if you put some plants, as water mint, etc., into a glass of fair water, it will germinate and shoot out into a great length, and also take root in the water, which root will in a short time be so increased and extended as to fill up the glass but you must remember that you put fresh water into the glass once in two or three days. Hereunto, also, may be added the experiment of Helmont concerning the growth of a tree. For (says he) I took two hundred pound weight of earth dried...

Microbial Ecology and Spontaneous Wine Fermentations

As noted above, the surface of grapes usually contain less than 104 yeast cells per grape (or per ml of juice).This number may increase during ripening on the vine, especially if the temperature is warm. Although ten or more yeast genera may be represented, the primary organism most frequently isolated from grape surfaces and the fresh must is Kloeckera apicu-lata. In contrast, S. cerevisiae, the yeast most responsible for the wine fermentation, is rarely observed on grapes. Rather, S. cerevisiae and other related strains are introduced into the must during grape handling and crushing steps directly from the equipment.The must is inoculated, in other words, by the yeasts originating from the grape surface as well as by those residing on the winery equipment.

The malolactic fermentation

OCCASIONALLY one comes across what is really a third fermentation, the malo-lactic fermentation. This occurs usually after the wine has been bottled, and often as much as a year or more after it was made. It is something which should be welcomed, when it does occur, for it imparts a very pleasant freshness to a white wine, and does reduce the acidity a little. For this last reason it is important to the winemakers of Austria, Germany and Switzerland, whose grapes tend to contain slightly more malic acid than those from sunnier regions, where the sun will have accounted for most of it before the wine is even made.

Adjustments Blending and Clarification

Wine spoilage is often mediated by growth of wild yeasts that contaminate wine while it is aging in wooden barrels. In particular, species of the Brettanomyces and Dekkera groups are frequently involved in wine spoilage and are difficult to control.This is because these yeasts are naturally present not only on grapes and in musts, but also in the barrels in which the wine is aged (Comitini et al., 2004). Growth of Dekkera and Brettanomyces may result in formation of ethylphenolic compounds that have unpleasant, barny or wet-dog off-odors. They are also a possible cause of the mousy off-odor defect (the smell of which, one can imagine). Control measures ordinarily include attention to cleaning and sanitation at the harvest and crushing steps and adequate sulfit-ing of the grapes.It is more difficult, however, to control Brettanomyces and Dekkera once the wine reaches the wooden barrels, which cannot be effectively sterilized. Except for very small wineries, which may have only a few...

Molds in Wine Production

Molds are not used as starter culture for wine production, but the growth of Botrytis cinerea may be required for the production of certain types of wine. In general the growth of B. cinerea is unwanted, as it will rot the grapes. However, for the production of sweet white wine such as French Sauternes and Hungarian Tokay, the development of B. cinerea on the matured grapes is required and known as ''noble'' or ''vulgar rot'' this results in overripening and dehydration leading to increased sugar content in the grapes. Also, the growth of B. cinerea adds a characteristic flavor to the wine produced from these grapes. Specific environmental conditions such as alternating dry and humid periods are required for reaching the perfect stage of maturation and the development of B. cinerea (146,147). Biological control of the growth of B. cinerea on matured grapes has been obtained by use of the yeast Pichia membranifaciens its antagonistic effect against B. cinerea appears to be related to...

Malolactic Fermentation

A certain amount of acidity is expected and desirable in wine. Red wines typically have a pH of 3.3 to 3.6 white wines are usually slightly more acidic. Some grapes, and the musts made from those grapes, however, may contain high levels of organic acids, such that the pH is too low (i.e.,

Crushing and Maceration

The purpose of crushing is to extract the juice from the grapes. Before the grapes are crushed, however, leaves, large stems, and stalks are removed. Some wine makers may not remove all of the stems to increase the concentration of tannins and other phenolic compounds that are present in the stems and extracted into the juice. Once the extraneous material is separated and removed, the grapes are crushed by one of several types of devices. Roller crushers consist of a pair of stainless steel cylinder-shaped rollers. Another type of crusher, called the Garolla crusher, not only performs the crushing step, but also removes stems. It consists of a rotating shaft contained within a large horizontal stainless steel cylinder or cage.Arms on the shaft are attached to paddles or blades such that when the shaft turns, the grapes are moved and pressed against the side of the cylinder. Perforations on the walls of the cylinder allow for the juice (along with the skin, seeds, and pulpy material)...

Winery Yeasts and Yeasts Used for the Production of Distilled Alcohols

Traditionally, wine is produced by spontaneous fermentation and several yeast species have been reported to be involved in the fermentation. The predominant microorganisms on the grapes vary according to the grape variety, climatic conditions, soil quality, development and physical quality of the grapes, as well as the amount of fungicides applied to the vineyards. Nevertheless, the predominant yeast genera on grapes are reported to be Kloeckera and Hanseniaspora, whereas Saccharomyces cerevisiae is not observed or observed at only very low concentrations on healthy undamaged berries. The yeast genera associated with wine making include Candida, Cryptococcus, Debaryomyces, Dekkera (teleomorphic form of Brettanomyces), Hanseniaspora (teleomorphic form of Kloeckera), Kluyveromyces, Metschnikowia, Pichia, Rhodotorula, Saccharomyces, Saccharomycodes, Schizosaccharomy-ces, and Zygosaccharomyces. Some of these yeast genera are thought to be essential for the wine fermentation, and others...

Gin and vodka

In terms of ease of manufacture, the production of pure alcohol is a science, not an art, and results therefore can be guaranteed if the proper equipment is used and procedures followed. There are no subtleties involved such as quality of grapes or the type of yeast used. One hardly even needs to worry about hygiene just add baker's yeast to any solution of sugar to produce a beer and then remove all the extraneous, noxious materials by fractional distillation to leave a pure alcohol. What could be simpler

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Grapes from warm climates tend to contain less malic acid and therefore benefit less from such a fermentation than do grapes from relatively cold areas. The best such wines are produced from the juice of Pinot noir or Chardonnay grapes. There must be rigorous avoidance of colour development, hence the extensive use of SO2, bentonite and PVPP.

Economic value

Fermented foods were the original members of the value-added category. Milk is milk, but add some culture and manipulate the mixture just right, age it for a time, and the result may be a fine cheese that fetches a price well above the combined costs of the raw materials, labor, and other expenses. Grapes are grapes, but if grown, harvested, and crushed in a particular environment and at under precise conditions, and the juice is allowed to ferment and mature in an optimized manner, some professor may well pay up to 6 or 7 (or more ) for a bottle of the finished product. Truly, the economic value of fermented foods, especially fermented grapes, can reach extraordinary heights (apart from the professor market). As noted in Chapter 10, some wines have been sold for more than 20,000 per bottle. Even some specialty vinegars (Chapter 11) sell for more than 1,000 per liter. It should be noted that not all fermented foods command such a high dollar value. In truth, the fermented foods market...

Starter Cultures

In the starting material In other words, how are fermentations started There are essentially three ways to induce or initiate a food fermentation.The oldest method simply relies on the indigenous microorganisms present in the raw material. Raw milk and meat, for example, usually harbor the very bacteria necessary to convert these materials into cheese and sausage. Grapes and grape crushing equipment, likewise, contain the yeasts responsible for fermenting sugars into ethanol and for transformation of juice into wine.

Pure Corn Whiskey

As mentioned before, the fermentation of sugars derived from grapes, barley, corn, potatoes, molasses, milk or any other source produces a wide variety of chemicals, the major one being ethyl alcohol (ethanol). Minor constituents will be propyl, butyl, and amyl alcohols. These minor constituents are collectively called fusel alcohols (in the past they were called fusel oils , but they're not oils they're higher alcohols). They are responsible for the unpleasant side effects of drinking such as headaches and hangovers.


In terms of ease of manufacture, the production of pure alcohol is a science, not an art, and results therefore can be guaranteed if the proper equipment is used and the correct procedures followed. There are no subtleties involved such as quality of grapes or the type of yeast used. The starting material can be corn, potatoes, grapes, wheat, rice, milk, molasses in fact anything which contains a fermentable sugar. One hardly even needs to worry about hygiene just add large amounts of bakers' yeast to a solution of sugar and stand back. The sugar will be rapidly fermented to a crude alcohol known as beer in the trade, and then this beer is fractionally distilled to


Distinguishing between species of Saccharomyces is based primarily on morphological, physiological, and biochemical properties. These yeasts usually have a round spherical or ovoid appearance, but they may be elongated with a pseudohyphae. The sugar fermentation patterns and the assimilation of carbon sources are key factors for speciation (Table 26 also see Chapter 9 for beer yeast speciation). Other specific diagnostic tests include hyphae formation, ascospore formation, resistance to cycloheximide, and growth temperatures. Several physiological traits vary among the Sac-charomyces and are useful not only for classification, but are important for strain selection. Some strains, for example, are very osmophilic and halotolerant, and can grow in foods containing high concentrations of carbohydrates (e.g., high sugar grapes) or salt (soy sauce).


Brandy is produced by distilling wine.The wine can be made from other fruits, but when made from grapes, white wines are used as the base. The most well known brandy is Cognac, made from the Cognac district of France. In the United States, brandy must conform to a standard of identity that describes the starting fruit or juice, the ethanol concentration, the duration of aging, and other compositional and manufacturing details. Most American beverage-type brandies contain less than 50 ethanol (100 proof). In contrast, brandy used for fortification purposes usually contains 70 to 95 ethanol (140 proof to 190 proof). Due to evaporation, long aging can substantially reduce the ethanol concentration.

Spoilage by bacteria

The acetic acid bacteria that are most important in wine spoilage belong to one of three genera Acetobacter, Gluconoacetobac-ter, and Gluconobacter. The main species involved in wine spoilage are Acetobacter aceti, Acetobacter pasteurianus, and Gluconobacter oxydans. They are Gram negative, catalase-positive rods capable of oxidizing alcohols to acids. These bacteria also are considered as obligate aerobes however, it now appears that limited growth and metabolism can occur even under the mostly anaerobic conditions that prevail during wine making. Although acetic acid bacteria are generally found at relatively low levels in vineyards and in must (

Grape Composition

Given that the two major constituents of wine, water and ethanol, have no flavor, color, or aroma, it is not surprising that the other grape components contribute so much to the organ-oleptic properties of wine. Some of these substances can be problematic, causing a variety of defects. In addition, the composition of grapes changes during growth and maturation on the vine, such that the time of harvest influences the chemical constituents of the grape as well as the wine.For example, the sugar concentration increases as the grape ripens on the vine, due to increased biosynthesis, and to a lesser extent, to water evaporation and subsequent concentration of solutes. In contrast, acid concentrations decrease during maturation. Finally, in discussing the composition of wine, it is often more useful to consider the liquid juice just after the grapes have been crushed as the starting material, rather than the intact grape. As listed in Table 10-2, the juice, or must, consists of several...

Simple distillation

As mentioned before, the fermentation of sugars derived from grapes, barley, corn, potatoes, molasses, milk or any other source produces a wide variety of chemicals, the major one being ethyl alcohol (ethanol). Minor constituents will be methyl, propyl, butyl and amyl alcohols, aldehydes, ketones, esters, and a host of other organic compounds in small amounts. Analytical methods such as chromatography reveal that there are literally hundreds of compounds present after a fermentation. These minor constituents are the congeners and the amount of each will determine the flavour, bouquet and colour of a particular beverage. They are also responsible for unpleasant side


Other than water, which is 70 to 85 of the total juice volume, simple sugars represent the largest constituent of grapes or must. Depending on the maturation of the grape at harvest, must usually contains equal concentrations of glucose and fructose, with the latter increasing somewhat in over-ripened grapes. Sucrose is usually present at very low concentrations (less than 1 ), except for musts from V labrusca grapes, which can contain as much as 10 sucrose. In general, most grape cultivars contain about 20 sugar (i.e., 10 glucose and 10 fructose), but the actual amount of total


Grape cultivation (viticulture) and wine making appears to have begun in the Zagros Mountains and Caucasus region of Asia (north of Iran, east ofTurkey). Domestication of grapes dates back to 6000 B.C.E., and large-scale production, based on archaeological evidence, appears to have been established by 5400 B.C.E. A fermented wine-like beverage made from honey and fruit appears to have been produced in China around 7000 B.C.E., and rice-based wines, similar to modern day sake, were produced in Asia a few thousand years later (Chapter 12).Wines were imported into France, Italy, and other Mediterranean countries by seafaring traders sometime around 1000 B.C.E., and vines and viticulture techniques were likely introduced into those regions several centuries later.

Other Pretreatments

It is permissible to add other materials, besides sulfites, to the must to enhance extraction, modify the composition, or promote fermentation. For example, pectic enzymes can added during crushing to facilitate extraction of juice from skins and later during pressing to improve clarification. This practice is quite common for white wines manufactured in the United States.As noted above, it is not uncommon for some grapes, and juices from those grapes, to have either too low or too high of a pH.Thus, either acids, such as tartaric acid, or neutralizing salts, such as calcium carbonate, can be added to adjust must pH. Finally, nutrients that enhance yeast growth and fermentation can be added.These yeast growth factors

Wines and Brandies

By far the most common wine is made from grapes. Grape juice is quite acidic, and falls between malt extract and honey in nutrient levels. Mature grapes usually have a coating of wild yeast on the outside of the skin, living on the sugar that leaks out of the grape. This means that simply crushing the grapes to release the juice will result in the production of a wine - but a wine that will often be sour and unpleasant to drink. These high levels of acidity allow one to make wine with lower sanitation levels than are required for beer and mead, but as a general rule better sanitation will always result in a better wine. Be sure to wash your feet very carefully before using traditional methods

Sweet wines

Wine that is definitely sweet, but not necessarily one that would be acceptable to many con-sumers.A similar and more common approach is to add unfermented juice, preferably from the same grapes used to make the wine. Alternatively, sweet wines can be made by stopping the fermentation before all of the glucose and fructose have been fermented. In some cases, sugar may be added to the juice prior to fermentation, such that when the fermentation is complete, residual sugar (and sweetness) remain. This is one of the more common practices in the United States, and many of the sweet wines from New York state are produced this way. tional techniques.These are based on concentrating the sugar in the juice or grapes. The juice, for example, can be partially concentrated by heating. In contrast, the grapes can be dried via atmospheric drying, or frozen so that the ice can be removed. However, the most well-known traditional technique for concentrating sugars in grapes is to dehydrate the...

Wine Fermentation

I do like to think about the life of wine, how it is a living thing. I like to think about the year the grapes were growing, how the sun was shining that summer or if it rained . . . what the weather was like. I think about all those people who tended and picked the grapes, and if it is an old wine, how many of them must be dead by now. I love how wine continues to evolve, how every time I open a bottle it's going to taste different than if I opened it on any other day. Because a bottle of wine is actually alive it's constantly evolving and gaining complexity like your '61 and it begins a steady, inevitable decline.


The main polysaccharide in grapes or must is pectin, a structural carbohydrate that provides structural integrity to the plant cell walls. The pectin concentration in the must can be as high as 5 g L,which could potentially cause the wine to become cloudy. However, most of the pectin is either precipitated out during fermentation or is hydrolyzed to soluble sugars by exogenous

Stuck Fermentations

Among the possible causes of a stuck fermentation are those that are due to the must composition, the handling of the must and wine, or the presence of wild yeasts that inhibit desirable wine yeast. The must may contain, for example, an insufficient level of nitrogen or other nutrients necessary to support adequate yeast growth. The sugar concentration in the grapes or must may be too high, resulting in osmotic pressures that inhibit the yeasts. Some yeasts also are inhibited by high ethanol con-centration.As noted previously, the ethanol fermentation is exothermic, and if the temperature is not controlled or cooling is inadequate, the resulting high temperature ( 30 C) may cause the fermentation to come to an abrupt halt. In contrast, too cool an incubation temperature (e.g.,

The Workshop

You don't have to grow your own grapes make wine, nor do you need to make all of your own equipment to become a practical distiller. However, it is very useful to know how to make things yourself, even if it's just how to connect prefabricated parts together in different ways. In this chapter, we'll cover workshop basics and several small projects that will help you with your equipment.

Organic Acids

The main fixed acids, depending on the grape, condition, and maturity, are tartaric acid and malic acid. The ratio of these two acids is usually about 1 5 (tartaric malic), but it can be reversed in some grapes. These acids are important in wine for several reasons. Since malic acid contains two carboxylic acid groups, it contributes more protons in solutions, and makes the must more acidic. If the malic acid concentration is too low, as might occur in overly mature grapes grown in warm climates, the wine pH will be too high. The wine will lack the desirable acid flavor and may be more prone to spoilage by bacteria. In contrast, although a minimum acidity is desirable in wine, excess acidity is also a defect and results in an inferior sour-tasting wine. Musts obtained from grapes grown in cool climates may contain high levels of malic acid, and are, therefore, problematic. A natural, biological method for deacidifying wine is commonly used for such musts (see below). Finally, it...

Spoilage by fungi

Fungal growth and spoilage rarely occurs during the wine fermentation, since most fungi are aerobic and sensitive to ethanol. Rather, molds are most important before and after the wine is made. Fungal growth on grapes is one of the most serious problems encountered in grape viticulture, causing considerable loss of crop.If not controlled, rots, mildews, and other fungal diseases can wipe out an entire vineyard. As noted earlier for sweet botryized wines, a fine line sometimes separates spoiled, rotten grapes from desirable, noble rot growth of B. cinerea. Some fungi, such as Penicillium, Aspergillus, Mucor, and Rhizopus, can grow on freshly harvested grapes during transport to the winery. Pesticides, sulfiting agents, and other antimycotics can be applied to help control this problem, but care must be exercised to minimize their impact on the wine and during fermentation.


The grape vines employed for the base wine for cognac production are nearly all from Charente and the adjacent regions of Deux-S vres and Dordogne. Furthermore, the grape varieties must be either Ugni blanc, Colmbard or Folle Blanc, with the exception that up to 10 can be wines from Juran on blanc, Semillon, Montils, Blanc ram or Select.

Vinegar Quality

The other main characteristics on which vinegar quality is based are those that relate to flavor, aroma, and other organoleptic properties. Vinegar flavor is particularly influenced by the raw ethanolic material from which it was made. Thus, wine vinegars contain a mixture of phenolic compounds that are ordinarily present in grapes. And although acetic acid is by far the predominant flavor present in vinegar, other volatile flavor compounds are also present and contribute to the overall flavor profile of vinegar. The enzymes alcohol dehydrogenase and aldehyde dehydrogenase that oxidize ethanol and acetaldehyde, respectively, also oxidize other alcohols and aldehydes.Thus, if the must, mash, or other starting material contains these

Spoilage by yeasts

Yeasts represent a major cause of wine defects and spoilage. Moreover, since yeasts are an expected part of the natural flora of grapes and must, their growth before, during, and after the wine fermentation is difficult to control. For example, Kloeckera apiculata, one of the yeasts involved in the early stages of a natural fermentation, can produce high enough levels of various esters (mainly ethyl acetate and methylbutyl acetate) to cause an ester taint, which has a vinegar-like aroma. Once vigorous growth of S. cerevisiae begins, other yeasts are generally unable to compete and grow. However, if S. cerevisiae does not become well-established (i.e., during natural fermentation), other yeasts, including Zygosaccharomyces bailii, can grow and produce acetic and succinic acids. Growth of this organism is especially a problem in sweet wines, due to its ability to tolerate high osmotic pressure and high ethanol concentrations.


1 lb. grapes Soak the barley overnight in half a pint of (extra) water and the next day mince both grain and sultanas. Bring water to the boil and pour it over grain and fruit, then crush the grapes manually and add. Stir in the sugar and make sure it is all dissolved. Allow to cool just tepid, then introduce the nutrient, acid and yeast. Ferment closely covered for 10 days, stirring vigorously daily, then strain into fermenting jar and fit trap.


Champagne is made from Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier grapes grown in the Champagne district. This is a northern grape-growing region and the still wines made from individual cultivars (the Pinots make red wines and the Chardonnay is used for white) are not particularly remarkable (some might call them insipid). However, when the base wines are appropriately blended (a skill first perfected by the monk Dom P rignon), the wine assumes the best qualities of each individual cultivar. Manufacture starts, as for other white wines, with a rather fast pressing of the grapes, such that pigment extraction is minimized.The first press juice, called the cuv e, is then inoculated with selected yeasts (these are almost always proprietary strains), and the juice is fermented at about 18 C in oak barrels (stainless steel vats are also used). Because the base wines can be rather acidic (

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