Step 3: Racking, Aging, and Bottling

Racking: Racking is essential in the fermentation phase; this is defined as separating the wine from the sediment throughout fermentation by siphoning off the wine from the top of the fermentation vessel. When to do this can be determined using a hydrometer and evaluating the “specific gravity” of the must. When the specific gravity is around 1.03 it is ready for a separation at the end of the primary fermentation, and after the secondary fermentation, it will also be required before bottling the wine as you want all the yeast sediments to...

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Step 2: Fermentation

Fermentation is the most important step in the process of learning how to make wine, and definitely the most involved, I’ll go into further detail later on as well as the chemistry involved but I’ll go over the basics. Fermentation occurs in two steps, the primary stage is the aerobic stage, and secondary stage which is anaerobic. In general terms fermentation is a natural process in which the yeast in your must eats the dissolved sugars, (glucose and fructose) and as a byproduct creates alcohol (ethanol) in addition to aromas and flavors,...

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Step 1: Flavor Extraction

Step 1:  Flavor Extraction In this step you are making the basic liquid you will later ferment. An important thing to consider in this step is obviously going to be what kind of wine you are making. When learning how to make wine it’s important to understand that there are over 300 unique grapes that can be used to make red wine alone, and over 200 varieties of grapes for white wine, not to mention other ingredients that can be used for different wines including most of the berry family, fruits such as apple or peach, and even flowers...

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How to Make Wine: Sonoma County

A few months back, the state of California passed a law concerning wine makers.  The law requires that wines produced in Sonoma must say “Sonoma County” while already designated with other Sonoma appellations such as Sonoma Coat and Russian River. While there has been some resistance, the movement is substantially supported in favor of the inclusion.  The idea of the addition is to somewhat brand the particular cast of wine into a widely-recognized regional specialist, much like Napa Valley.  Several smaller wineries insisted that the...

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Can You Spot Your Wines?

I did pretty well at guessing which was which, but I must admit I was off a a couple *blush*. See if you can do better:

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