punch down

Discussion in 'General Wine Making Forum' started by Siwash, Sep 17, 2017.

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  1. Sep 17, 2017 #1

    Siwash

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    How often do you folks punch? I do a morning mid Pm and before I got to bed... how vigorous are your punch downs?
     
  2. Sep 17, 2017 #2

    cmason1957

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    I work from my house. I punch down morning, noon, evening and sometimes right beside going to bed. I punch down vigorously enough to get all the must as wet as I can get it. I use a rake to do my punch downs.
     
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  3. Sep 17, 2017 #3

    GEM

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    A couple three times a day is usually sufficient.
     
  4. Sep 17, 2017 #4

    GEM

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    A couple three times a day is usually sufficient. You can do it more if you have the time.
     
  5. Sep 17, 2017 #5

    NorCal

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    3-4, if I worked from home, it would probably twice that.
     
  6. Sep 18, 2017 #6

    ceeaton

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    I try not to punch my wife or kids, they don't like that too much. :h
     
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  7. Sep 18, 2017 #7

    Billpizzaiolo

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    I do the same if I am around during the day. Otherwise it is when I get up in the morning and before going to sleep in the evening. Today it is reading 1.013 S.G. and I think that tomorrow I will press the must and start Malolactic.
     
  8. Sep 18, 2017 #8

    dralarms

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    3 times a day. Morning noon and night.
     
  9. Sep 18, 2017 #9

    GreenEnvy22

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    I'm at work during the day so I usually just do morning and evening, or sometimes once right after work too. Weekends I might get an extra one in.
     
  10. Sep 18, 2017 #10

    Boatboy24

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    Before work, after work, before bed.
     
  11. Sep 18, 2017 #11

    pooldude

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    i do 3 to 4 a day. i use a homemade tool made of pvc pipe 4 90s 3 tees.
     
  12. Sep 18, 2017 #12

    balatonwine

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    Like all things in wine making, the frequency of punching down the cap will change the type of wine created. To understand that it is important to understand why the cap needs to be punched down. The basic reasons include are related, but not limited, to skin and pulp contact with the fermenting juice below and to aerate. Minimum rule of thumb is at least twice a day. More vigorous fermentations may require more. So there is not really one "simple" answer. You do what you think is best given your time constraints and the type of wine you want to create. For example, doing more punching creates more cap contact with the fermenting juice, which results in different color and flavor profiles in the final wine due to this action.


    The cap should be punched down and broken up each time so the top of the fermenting wine is all wet, even and smooth(ish).
     
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  13. Sep 18, 2017 #13

    KevinL

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    I punch down when I get the opportunity. So sometimes 2 times a day, sometimes 4. Depends if the kids will let me after I get home from work. In that way, I guess my 2 year old is helping to shape the flavor profile of my wine.
     
  14. Sep 18, 2017 #14

    JohnT

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    I punch down twice a day, when I first get up in the morning, and the minute I get home from work.

    I punch rather vigorously to provide some level of aeration as well as exposure of the skins.

    I also take temp and brix measurements at each punch down to track how fermentation progresses.
     
  15. Sep 19, 2017 #15

    Siwash

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    thanks everyone...
     
  16. Sep 19, 2017 #16

    jgmann67

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    Twice a day till it stops making a cap. Then it's time to press.

    Question - how hard do you press: just enough to get the grapes under the wine; or, do you mash to the bottom?
     
  17. Sep 19, 2017 #17

    Johnd

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    I push the skins down gently, repeatedly, until all are completely saturated and none are floating above the surface of the wine. I typically avoid smashing to the bottom, my stainless punch down tool would break seeds if they are mashed, you don't want that.............
     
  18. Sep 19, 2017 #18

    VanMkr

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    What about no punch at all? My grandparents were devout about never touching the must and their wine was pretty good by all accounts!

    Maybe I'll experiment and report back with punched and un-punched!
     
  19. Sep 19, 2017 #19

    Siwash

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    wow! never heard of that... my must would overflow if i did that!
     
  20. Sep 19, 2017 #20

    Johnd

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    Cannot speak from experience, as my must is always punched down, I have read that the risk is that it gets exposed to oxygen and starts to grow unwanted microorganisms which can infect your wine.

    From the MoreWinemaking Manual:

    "Punching the cap protects the wine, aiding with extraction of color and flavor compounds from the skins, along with the dispersal of built-up heat. If the cap is exposed to the air for too long, the surface can dry out and allow the colonization of airborne bacteria. The most common one is acetobacter, (vinegar bacteria), though pretty much any one will ruin your wine. Since the rising alcohol levels in the fermenting must are high enough to kill airborne bacteria when it washes over them, submerging the skins helps to protect the wine from spoilage throughout the fermentation."
     
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