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Grapes for sugar?

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bluedart

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I am curious whether it is possible to incorporate more grapes and less sugar. How is the standard set for the quantity of grapes used in making wine? Are there disadvantages in using higher amounts of grapes or is it just a waste of money and resources?
 

Johnd

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I am curious whether it is possible to incorporate more grapes and less sugar. How is the standard set for the quantity of grapes used in making wine? Are there disadvantages in using higher amounts of grapes or is it just a waste of money and resources?
I'm not sure exactly what your question is, but offer the following: Grape wine is generally made from nothing but grapes. If the grapes you are using have enough sugar in them (most wine grapes, when properly grown and ripened, have enough sugar), then you don't need to add any sugar. If you do end up with grapes that are low in sugar, adding more grapes that are low in sugar won't bring up the BRIX, but sugar will. If you have low sugar grapes and have some high sugar grapes to mix in with them, that could be a solution to the problem. Does any of that answer your question? If not, be more specific with your question.
 

bluedart

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OK. So is it possible to make a gallon of wine with nothing but grapes ( assuming that the BRIX is of a sufficient value) and no added water or sugar?
 

Johnd

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OK. So is it possible to make a gallon of wine with nothing but grapes ( assuming that the BRIX is of a sufficient value) and no added water or sugar?
Yes, it is, that's how wine is made from grapes, nothing but grapes...........
 

bluedart

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Yes, it is, that's how wine is made from grapes, nothing but grapes...........
So (continuing on in my understanding of wine making) why do most of the recipes I find on the internet call for 4-6 pounds of grapes. Here is one, for instance:

6 pounds wild grapes
2 pounds sugar
6 pints water
 

cmason1957

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That recipe suffers from the same problem that many recipes suffer from that you find on the internet. Here, add this much fruit and this much sugar and you have the sugar level at the proper level. In any recipe I find, I check two things minimum, often three. Add 1/2 Sugar suggested, measure SG then add more sugar if required. Add 1/2 the Acid called for then measure the Ph and most times the TA of the mixture. Add more if required.

Oh and fruit, almost always double or triple and add less water than is called for, oftentimes none.
 

bluedart

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That recipe suffers from the same problem that many recipes suffer from that you find on the internet. Here, add this much fruit and this much sugar and you have the sugar level at the proper level. In any recipe I find, I check two things minimum, often three. Add 1/2 Sugar suggested, measure SG then add more sugar if required. Add 1/2 the Acid called for then measure the Ph and most times the TA of the mixture. Add more if required.

Oh and fruit, almost always double or triple and add less water than is called for, oftentimes none.
OK thanks.
 

Johnd

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So (continuing on in my understanding of wine making) why do most of the recipes I find on the internet call for 4-6 pounds of grapes. Here is one, for instance:

6 pounds wild grapes
2 pounds sugar
6 pints water
If you want to make grape wine, skip the water and sugar, otherwise what you will produce is grape flavored wine.
 

mainshipfred

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I don't want to complicate thing but this fall I had a Tempranillo with a SG of 1.084 so I needed to add sugar and a Sauv Blanc of 1.100 that I had to water back to get around 12%ABV. But nowhere near the percentages in the recipe.
 

bluedart

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I don't want to complicate thing but this fall I had a Tempranillo with a SG of 1.084 so I needed to add sugar and a Sauv Blanc of 1.100 that I had to water back to get around 12%ABV. But nowhere near the percentages in the recipe.
I was thinking that maybe to aim lower on the alcohol level. Is this something that is mandatory? If you have an SG of 1.084 than that's 11.2%ABV. For my tastes that's fine. In that way you don't have to add any sugar. What do you think?
 

mainshipfred

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I was thinking that maybe to aim lower on the alcohol level. Is this something that is mandatory? If you have an SG of 1.084 than that's 11.2%ABV. For my tastes that's fine. In that way you don't have to add any sugar. What do you think?
Just my opinion but for me it depends on the wine. Whites in general I think I like around 12 to 12.5%, Reds anywhere between 13 and 16. Again depending on the varietal.
 

Dennis Griffith

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He did say 'wild grapes'. Taking that he is referring to fox grapes, they can be quite tart and in need of sugar if making wine. Since I don't know what part of the world he is getting his grapes, this is only a guess.
 

Maynard123

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I would like to add that taking a hydrometer reading you can see what the potential alcohol is and if you are using wild grapes they may not have enough sugar so you may need to add some. Which is probably why your recipe calls for it. I have found that I have to add sugar for most fruit wines I make, however as previously stated when using wine grapes you shouldn't nee to add sugar.
 

bluedart

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He did say 'wild grapes'. Taking that he is referring to fox grapes, they can be quite tart and in need of sugar if making wine. Since I don't know what part of the world he is getting his grapes, this is only a guess.
The "wild grapes" was part of a recipe I found online. I was just using it as an example. For my own wine I was using 3 pounds of Baco Noir.
 
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