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lovethepirk

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I am doing another Pinot kit and I am also doing a wheat beer :)

I am wondering about real grapes though and have some questions:

1) If you use 100-100 pounds of grapes to do 6 gallons do you have to add any water?

2) Do you have to add any sugar

3) Can you be less sanitary when crushing the grapes given that you are going to use some sulfites to disinfect the grapes prior to pitching yeast?

Thanks....
 

grapeman

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There is variability in grapes as to yield of juice so it requires slightly differing amounts of grapes. Do not add water. Only add sugar if the variety you use is too low in initial brix at picking. Get as ripe as you can get the grapes. Adjust whites to about 22-23 brix and reds 24-26 brix. It isn't necessary, but raises the ABV a bit.

Sanitation is still necessary, but the S02 helps prevent bad bacteria from getting established.
 

rodo

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Do not add water
Unless, like last year here in the east when it rained all summer driving the acid content higher and not making any sugar in the grapes. When we picked up our juice at the winery I was instructed to add a certian amount of water and (X) pounds of sugar to make 6 gallons.
 

lovethepirk

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Thanks, I watched some videos and some people stomp on the grapes some use a plank of wood(2x4) or some use a press. Each of these seem unsanitary.

Is this too early to worry about sanitization bc we are going to toss metabisulfite in there to kill all the bad bacteria?


Thanks!
 

frankr3

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you add sulfite to the grapes at the crush not only to kill bacteria, but to stun the natural yeast so you can inoculate with your cultured yeast

rule for grapes to final wine:
multiple lbs of grapes by 0.1 to get gallons of must
then multiple gallons of must by 0.8 to get final gallons of wine

two things you should definitely go after after the crush:
get your brix to 24-26, if too high add water (acidified), if too low add sugar
get your ph to 3.5 , if too high add TA to reduce ph
 

jet

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Thanks, I watched some videos and some people stomp on the grapes some use a plank of wood(2x4) or some use a press. Each of these seem unsanitary.

Is this too early to worry about sanitization bc we are going to toss metabisulfite in there to kill all the bad bacteria?


Thanks!
Week before last, we used a 2x4 wrapped in several layers of plastic wrap to crush about 120lbs of grapes. I'd say it was fairly sanitary, but not very effective. We ended up re-crushing by hand and re-pressing.
 

Wade E

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The bad thing about wood is that bacteria can get in deep to the point where you cant get at it with sanitizers, the good thing is that when you sanitize it you are killing the germs at the surface and those bacteria deep in dont effect your producthence why using a wooden cutting boatrd for food is still good and a press for grapes is still good or even a barrel for your wine. Yes you should sanitize all of thei stuff with a sulfite solution and adding ctric acid to this solution makes it even more effective. This solution is 3 tbls of kmeta and 3 tbls of citric acid per gallon and this is very effective. I also recommend Star San or Iodophor as sanitizers as they are no rinse products. Star San and K-meta can be put in a vessel sealed and will last months for your next use, Iodophor will only last about a day.
 

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