Looking for orange/maceration winemaking tips

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julcharl

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I want to try white maceration for the first time with the objective of getting an "orange" wine. There isn't much info and tips online about this but here is roughly what I would plan it. I'd be very interested in getting the thoughts of someone with experience making this type of wine.

Grapes are homegrown La Crescent and Acadie Blanc. On harvest day, I would destem, crush, and pitch EC 1118. I'd target to leave the skins for 60 days before pressing, but readjust the duration as I see/taste how it progresses. It might be a bit short but I'd rather play it safe. This would be done in food-grade plastic buckets with airlocks. I'd maintain it around 16C/60F to minimize tannin extraction. I assume I would need to punch the cap every day too. Then I'd press, leave in carboys and finish with my usual "white wine procedure".

Any thoughts on this or just general tips when making a orange/maceration wine?
 

crushday

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I want to try white maceration for the first time with the objective of getting an "orange" wine. There isn't much info and tips online about this but here is roughly what I would plan it. I'd be very interested in getting the thoughts of someone with experience making this type of wine.

Grapes are homegrown La Crescent and Acadie Blanc. On harvest day, I would destem, crush, and pitch EC 1118. I'd target to leave the skins for 60 days before pressing, but readjust the duration as I see/taste how it progresses. It might be a bit short but I'd rather play it safe. This would be done in food-grade plastic buckets with airlocks. I'd maintain it around 16C/60F to minimize tannin extraction. I assume I would need to punch the cap every day too. Then I'd press, leave in carboys and finish with my usual "white wine procedure".

Any thoughts on this or just general tips when making a orange/maceration wine?
Good morning. I'm making my first batch of "orange wine" now - made from Roussanne grapes. I pitched the yeast, DV10, a few days ago. So, I'm tracking right along with you.

I read through your plan. You said, "I assume I would need to punch the cap every day or two." The context of this is after AF and what seems like an extended maceration. My advice is this: Right as AF (alcoholic fermentation) is completing (1-2 brix) - if you want an extended maceration - snap on your lids under air lock and let it sit (no more punch downs) for your EM. There is going to be enough CO2 coming off the wine to protect an undisturbed vessel for your 60 days. I've done EM on red wines this way without incident. Even after the wine disperses all the CO2, it being heavier than oxygen, will protect the wine. You're likely going to have a spontaneous MLF also which will help blanket the wine too. Of course, my advice is not considering whether or not you really want an oxidized wine. If so, your plan will produce an oxidized wine. I'd be careful to not let the skins begin to decay - which is likely with all that oxygen introduced by continuing to punch "every day or two". In general, decay needs the catalyst of oxygen to rot...

My plan is somewhat different than yours. My "OW" project is basically the same process as a red wine ferment. I'm not interested in oxidizing the wine in anyway, rather, desiring light/med tannins and the all the goodies from the skins while keeping the wine fresh and, orange in color.
 
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julcharl

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Thanks for the reply. Your point on punching down makes total sense, good call. I have only white grapes so never experienced with the red wine ferment process. I won't oxidize the wine, I'll limit the experimentations! But when you say that your orange wine plan is the same as red wine ferment, I'd be curious to hear what that means and how it differs from mine: EM duration, temps, etc.
 

crushday

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Here's a bit more information about my project. I'm fermenting in a cooled environment with an ambient temp of 60 degrees. Currently, my ferment is 64 degrees as the yeast will produce some warmth as they party it up. I'm expecting the temp to rise to about 68, maybe 70, which will help extract phenols and light tannins from the skins and seeds. This will also aid in color extraction - although my color is really good right now. But, I also know that color will change and fall out before it's bottled.

I'm punching down on the sixes - meaning at 6am and 6pm. I expect a 21 to 24 day ferment, but the wine will tell me when it's done and every ferment follows its own path. This qualifies as an extended maceration.

There's lots of information available on this site and other sites. Check out my current red wine string and/or this red wine manual from MoreWine: Red Wine Manual
 

balatonwine

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I answered a similar question 5 years ago:


It may need an update.

Mostly in the "red wine" style of making "orange wine" (which I now prefer to call Amber wine --- which I understand is the more traditional name from the Georgian: “ქარვისფერი ღვინო” (karvisperi ghvino) -- but I may be wrong, not speaking Georgian).

In short, I have played more with the soaking on skins, punching down method used by red wine makers. And I can say... it is different. I am perfecting my technique, but is not the same fully as with red wine making. Red wine grape skins have a different chemistry than white wine skins and need some different considerations. And they need some slight different approaches.

To be brief: To the best best results if you are punching down, focus on bouquet and taste not on color or the aroma (aroma is what the varietal produces from the grape, bouquet is what happens during the wine making -- so do not bother getting the most aromatic grapes as the bouquet will be very different). Doing it wrong, risks over oxygenation of the wine, and astringent flavors.

Example: My 2021 Amber wine from Muscat grapes. 15 days on the skins. Not much color extraction, but bursting in bouquet and wonderful on the palate.

DSC01218.JPG

And grape varietal matters. Compare my 2021 Pinot Gris (white wine style) and my 2022 Pinot Gris (Amber wine -- 9 days on the skins -- not filtered yet or clarified):


DSC01232.JPG

Hope this helps.
 
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balatonwine

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Is this wine after filtering? What do you use for filtering, pump?
I only use a fine mesh sieve at press time, after fermenting on the skins, to catch larger material. That is what I call "filtered".

After that I let the wine fall clear on its own. I add no clarifiers. I do not filter it any more.

Clarifying can take two to four months (longest took 5 months).

Hope this helps.
 

zappoid

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I only use a fine mesh sieve at press time, after fermenting on the skins, to catch larger material. That is what I call "filtered".

After that I let the wine fall clear on its own. I add no clarifiers. I do not filter it any more.

Clarifying can take two to four months (longest took 5 months).

Hope this helps.
I had to use 2 sieves: one for replacing and cleaning during pressing. Next year I want to try make white fresh crispy wine, but not sure I will manage to keep right temperature, only after retirement))
 
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