There’s no doubt that making wine is a complex process. However, there are some fantastic wine making resources that are available for free. Here are a list of my most used resources.
Gary’s Winemaking Spreadsheets
Academy member, Gary, was kind enough to share a suite of spreadsheets he uses for winemaking. One spreadsheet is a winemaking log and the other is a tool used to convert refractometer readings to specific gravity so you can skip the hydrometer!
If you don’t have a copy of Microsoft Office you can use Libre Office, an open source, free office suite. Using that software you can open either download above.
Composition of Grapes – Murli Dharmadhikari
As the cornerstone of quality wine the grape is no simple berry. This professional paper explores the chemical components of grapes, what they contribute to the finished wine, and how they can vary from one varietal to another. This is a must read for serious winemakers.
The Home Winemaker’s Manual – by Lum Eisenman
This free ebook is 179 pages of detailed winemaking how to. In addition to how to make wine there are several chapters explaining the science behind winemaking, the “why”. This definitely worth reading.
Jack maintains an amazing winemaking webpage and blog. With tons of in depth articles on every aspect of winemaking this is a resource you don’t wan to miss.
UC. Davis Home Winemaking
Making Table Wine at Home – By Cooke and Lapsy
This is considered to be the bible for home winemakers. Published in 1988 this book is available for free. It’s about 50 pages long and contains dynamite explanations of what to do and how to do it with respect to making wine at home.
Yes, it was published a long time ago. Remember though that wine has been made for thousands of years and the process is the same. There may be newer tools on the market that make certain aspects of wine-making easier, however, the concepts and methods are the same.
Wine For Normal People
Looking to widen your wine knowledge? Wine For Normal People Radio is probably the funnest way to explore the world of wine and wine making. The show if entertaining and informative. To get you started I made a list of my favorite episodes for wine makers in this post: Studying Wine to Become a Better Winemaker.
Wine Making Manuals
MoreWineMaking.com offers tons of stellar manuals on various aspects the wine making process. If there are any aspects that you’re not comfortable with or you want to know more about head over to MoreWineMaking.com and see if they’ve got a manual for you.
I highly recommend you check out their manual on Yeast & Grape Pairing. You’ll learn a lot. I promise.
Some of these manuals were written for their site, MoreBeerMaking.com, however, the information is just as applicable to wine as it is to beer.
Lellemand Wine Yeast Quick Reference Guide
This quick reference guide is a table of many many wine yeasts and how the vital characteristics of the yeast. For each yeast they compare its competitive nature, nitrogen requirements, alcohol tolerance, ideal fermentation temperatures, etc. There’s a lot of data in these tables that would be really handy for picking out yeasts. This in combination with the Yeast & Grape Pairing guide mentioned above will be all you need to get started.
Looking for information on making ciders from fresh apples? The best resource I’ve found on this topic is Cider Sage. This site includes how-to tutorials as well as reviews of different ciders that the author has tried.