Basic Wine Chemistry – WMA027

Basic Wine Chemistry – WMA027

http://traffic.libsyn.com/winemakersacademy/wma027.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: iTunes | Android | RSSBasic Wine Chemistry In this episode of the Winemaker’s Academy Podcast I go through the recommended values for various chemistry related aspects of wine such as: pH Titratable Acidity Alcohol Residual Sugar Sulfites For each of these I share the recommended values you can shoot for when making wine to help produce a more balanced wine. As you’ll hear in the show I don’t recommend making wine by the numbers and you certainly shouldn’t see these ranges as hard and fast rules. There may certainly be great wines with chemistry outside of these ranges but it is helpful to know where most balanced wines fall on the various scales. Aside from starting with great fruit and keeping your wine safe from spoilage getting the chemistry right is just as important to making a better bottle of wine. Questions Answered How can I lower my final specific gravity? When is wine technically start aging? Is it okay to use a sanitizer comprised of hydrogen peroxide and acetic acid? Resources & Products Mentioned Winemaker’s Answer Book by Alison Crowe Wine Alcohol Content Calculator Winemaker Magazine Measuring Residual Sugar Calculating Correct Sulfite Levels Kurt’s Temperature Control System Star San 3 Ways You Can Support the Podcast (as mentioned in the show) Become a Patreon Supporter Submit a wine making recipe Leave a review in iTunes or Stitcher Photograph by: CaptMikey9...

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Evaluating Your Own Wines – WMA026

Evaluating Your Own Wines – WMA026

http://traffic.libsyn.com/winemakersacademy/wma026.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: iTunes | Android | RSSEvaluating Your Own Wines In this podcast you’ll discover why it is so important to take a systematic approach to evaluating your own wines. This is, I believe, an essential part of learning to make a better bottle of wine. Whether you’re an amateur winemaker or professional you will benefit from this as will your wines. Here are just a few of the different systems used by wine professionals to evaluate wines. Take a look at each and see which one feels right to you. If these are too involved you could always write out a list of questions to answer when tasting your own wines to see where you can improve. UC Davis 20 Point Wine Scoring System Guild of Sommeliers Tasting Grid Wine and Spirits Education Trust Tasting Grid As I mentioned in the podcast the point of evaluating your wine is not to assign it a numeric score. The point is to take a structured approach to tasting and evaluating your wine. Questions Answered How long can you age kit wines? Can I add extra tannins to my kit wine? How does that affect aging? Can I age my kit wine in a 5 liter barrel? Resources & Products Mentioned Winemaker’s Academy Podcast Episode 23: Tasting Wine with the Wine Curmudgeon Matt’s Strawberry Melomel Nomacorc #9 Premium Corks Private Preserve Solid Cork Closures Overrun corks from wineries If you enjoy the podcast and would like to become a supporter click here to learn...

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Interview with Winemaker Paul Bonacquisti – WMA025

Interview with Winemaker Paul Bonacquisti – WMA025

http://traffic.libsyn.com/winemakersacademy/wma025.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: iTunes | Android | RSSFrom Hobby Winemaker to Pro with Paul Bonacquisti Paul Bonacquisti, formerly a radio DJ, made the jump from a hobby wine maker to a professional winemaker when he opened Bonacquisti Wine Company, a very popular Colorado winery. Paul joins Matt on the podcast to share his story of how he became a professional wine maker as well as advice on how others can do the same. We also talk about synthetic closures, selling wine in growlers, and even kegging wine. This was a really fun interview to record and there’s also a lot to learn. If you’re interested in learning more about Paul and to see what he’s up to check out his website: Bonacquisti Wine Company Resources & Products Mentioned International Wine Guild Nomacorc Wine Closures DOW...

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How Sparkling Wine is Made – WMA024

How Sparkling Wine is Made – WMA024

http://traffic.libsyn.com/winemakersacademy/wma024.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: iTunes | Android | RSSHow Sparkling Wine is Made Sparkling wines are an amazing product of fermentation. They must be made with utmost care not only for the sake of the wine but also for the well being of the wine maker. Taking a still wine in the bottle and then adding sugar, then yeast, and then capping can lead to some significant pressures building up in those glass bottles. Pressurized glass is a recipe for danger if you don’t have the hang of how sparkling winemaking is done. This podcast episode will show you how sparkling wines are made and we’ll also discuss how to stay safe should you decide to give it a try. Questions Answered I was supposed to have racked already. Should I wait until fermentation is over? My watermelon wines smell like rotting watermelon fields. What’s going on? Should I not have degassed my right before bottling? Resources & Products Mentioned Wikipedia Article on Sparkling Wine Production Montrachet Yeast Champagne Bottles (by the case) Sparkling Wine Corks Plastic Sparkling Wine Stoppers Winemaker’s Answer Book by Alison Crowe Photo of riddling rack by Manikom (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons Photo of sparkling wine by Andrea Parrish – Geyer...

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Tasting Wine with the Wine Curmudgeon – WMA023

Tasting Wine with the Wine Curmudgeon – WMA023

http://traffic.libsyn.com/winemakersacademy/wma023.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: iTunes | Android | RSSTasting Wine with the Wine Curmudgeon As winemaker’s we’re always concerned with how our wines taste and whether or not there was anything we could do to improve upon them. To help us understand how to better taste our wines we have Jeff Siegel, the Wine Curmudgeon, on the show for this episode. Jeff is a wine writer, wine judge, and has literally written the book on how to purchase cheap wines. His specializes in helping ordinary consumers find wines that are reasonably priced. Jeff has tasted a lot of wines and shares the insights he’s gained along the way. Here are links to Jeff’s website, book, and Twitter account: Wine Curmudgeon Website The Wine Curmudgeon’s Guide to Cheap Wine @WineCurmudgeon on Twitter Questions Answered These great questions came in through the Facebook group and via email. When scaling up a wine recipe do I need to scale up the amount of yeast? I accidentally racked the sediment with my wine. What should I do now? I just started my wine kit and added the metabisulfite instead of the bentonite. Will it be okay? Resources & Products Mentioned The Difference Between Cheap Wine and Wine That is Made Cheaply Drink Local Wine Gross Lees vs Fine Lees How to Use Bentonite Sur Lie Aging of...

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Are Sulfites Necessary in Wine? – WMA022

Are Sulfites Necessary in Wine? – WMA022

http://traffic.libsyn.com/winemakersacademy/wma022.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: iTunes | Android | RSSAre sulfites really necessary to make wine? The debate over whether or not we really need sulfites has been heated in the last few years. There is a growing population of winemakers that believe you just don’t need them and shouldn’t use them. There are also those who swear by using them in order to make wines that are stable and will stand the test of time. Which answer is right? The only one who can say is you. In this episode you’ll hear what Winemaker’s Academy members have to say about this question. Unfortunately I was only able to share about 14 responses in the show (given how long it would have taken to share them all). If you’d like to read all the responses I received please read on below. Please share your own thoughts in the comment section below and we can keep the sulfite conversation goin. Resources & Products Mentioned International Wine Guild Vinmetrica Digital Sulfite Meter (affiliate link) Techniques in Home Wine Making by Daniel Pambianchi Wines and Vines Magazine Free SO2 Chart (scroll down about half way) I’ll Drink to That Interview (link coming soon!) Are Sulfites Really Necessary? – Winemaker’s Academy Member Responses Oliver Yes I believe that Sulphur is needed in the wine making process. The SO2 is a antioxidant, anti ageing, anti microbial/bacterial and binds with acetaldehyde causing wines to loose flat flavours. All of these are very beneficial to wine and outweigh the risk of loosing a wine. Whilst I say this I still believe that the level of sulfites used in a wine should be as low as possible, only just enough to have the desired effect to protect the wine. Adam I certainly use them but my best friend’s grandfather didn’t and they still have 15 gallons of plum wine in carboys that I sampled the other day (after 8 years) and it was pretty great! I bottled a little bit of it that he had in 1 gallon jugs after I filtered it and it was just as good as it was when he was around. No sulfites but I could certainly feel the alcohol. It was also kept in a climate and light controlled area. I wish I had been old enough or interested enough to learn from him when he was around! Aaron I’ve always felt that I’d like to minimize additives to my wine – especial ones that affect the flavor. Personally, I add potassium meta bisulfide only to kill the wild yeast immediately after crushing the grapes. I know others like to stabilize with it right before bottling but I’d rather suffer shelf life than add it. I don’t make enough wine to keep it more than a couple years so I just make sure every thing is clean and sanitary before bottling. I’ve kept homemade wines for as long as two years and have never had one start to go bad. I have a three-year bottle in my basement. I’ll let you know how that tastes if I ever open...

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