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Bianco Nero

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Hi everyone,

This site is great with tons of information, however, when I'm reading this information there are so many topics I seem to get a tad flustered and not quite sure where to start.

Are there any logical places to start - like a guide of some sort?

My goal is to understand the winemaking process, at first at home small production with the eventual goal to buy a plot of land with the long term goal of running a successful vineyard.

Any direction would be greatly appreciated.

cheers
 

cmason1957

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Welcome to the site. I started at Jack Kellers site, on this page: Lots to read and hard to read, but lots of information. http://winemaking.jackkeller.net/starting.asp

After reading of bunch of the pages there, I bought a wine starter kit and my first wine kit. Some folks start with 1 gallon, not me, I started at 6 gallons and never make just one gallon. I know many do. To much work for 5 bottles.

Eventually, I moved on from wine kits and made a bunch of fruit wines, juice buckets and all grape wines, pretty much all in the same breath. These manuals come in really handy for that. https://morewinemaking.com/content/winemanuals

Then lastely, after learning how to use and read a hydrometer and ph meter, I asked a bunch of questions here. Folks are very willing to jump in and help, once we know enough information to get a clue what needs to happen.
 

BernardSmith

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My rule of thumb is to look for a trade rather than self published book on wine making and I would look for a book that was written by a commercial wine maker with a good history or making good wines and an even better history as a teacher of wine making. That means Daniel Pambianchi's Techniques in Home Winemaking. His focus is on grape wines and on making wines at home using the same kind of mind set as commercial wine makers use. There are chapters that go into technique and process quite deeply and chapters that don't. He begins at the very beginning and guides you through to the end. He used to be a fairly regular contributor to this forum.
 

Lara Hart

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Hello Bianco! I concur 100% with what CMason suggests. That's exactly what I did. Everyone on this forum is amazingly helpful. Cheers!
 

G259

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The way I got started was to buy the 1 gallon equipment kit from Midwest Supplies or Northern Brewer, I forget which one though. I used those 100% juices (like Juicy Juice) from the supermarket, that can help you to understand the process before moving up to larger quantities. Hey i figured that my mistakes would be smaller, but I am also making several 3 gallon batches now.
If you do go the store juice route, just make sure the ingredients don't contain potassium sorbate, or any other preservatives. Sorbate is what we use to stop any fermentation when it is finished.
I think those sites can point you to some winemaking reading as well. After all, it's in their best interest, if you think about it.
 

Bianco Nero

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Wow, thanks for all the get replies and nformation. In terms of a starting point we (my family) buy grapes from our local supermarket, say 25-40 cases. We have the old school grinder and press. Photo attached. So I would like to understand the process from this point.

Any suggestions on what I should focus on first?
I will read the linked threads also.

View media item 4618
 

G259

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I'm going to guess that they are not 'wine-making' grapes, if you get them from the grocer. Can you still make wine out of it? Yes, but understand going in that it won't (probably) turn out like a commercial wine. If they are wine-making grapes, and you can get them from the grocery store, how cool is that?! Yeah, I'd have to be making a LOT more wine!
 

Jal5

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Is there a wine grape supplier near you? That would be best route if you want to press grapes right off the bat. I would recommend doing wine from juice first to get your basic methods down before going the all grape route.
Joe
 

mainshipfred

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I started by reading Daniel Pambianchi's Techniques in Home Winemaking. The first few chapters are very informative and east reading. After that it got too technical for me as a beginner and had to stop. It was probably about this time I joined the forum. Even though I'm no longer a fan of kits I think it is a good way to get your feet wet. You should follow the instruction to a point however heed the following quotes.
Captian Barbosso -
@sour_grapes - Kit instructions are "for amusement purposes only."
 

Bianco Nero

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I'm going to guess that they are not 'wine-making' grapes if you get them from the grocer. Can you still make wine out of it? Yes, but understand going in that it won't (probably) turn out like a commercial wine. If they are wine-making grapes, and you can get them from the grocery store, how cool is that?! Yeah, I'd have to be making a LOT more wine!
The grapes are actually from local vineyards and are only in the store in October every year. The grapes are Merlot or Shiraz variety, I hope that they are winemaking grapes lol. this year I will document the process and share it here.

Is there a wine grape supplier near you? That would be best route if you want to press grapes right off the bat. I would recommend doing wine from juice first to get your basic methods down before going the all grape route.
Joe
Oh yes, there are tons of local suppliers in the area. thanks for your input.

I started by reading Daniel Pambianchi's Techniques in Home Winemaking. The first few chapters are very informative and east reading. After that it got too technical for me as a beginner and had to stop. It was probably about this time I joined the forum. Even though I'm no longer a fan of kits I think it is a good way to get your feet wet. You should follow the instruction to a point however heed the following quotes.
Captian Barbosso -
@sour_grapes - Kit instructions are "for amusement purposes only."
Thanks for the reply, I will look into Daniels techniques.
 
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