The Wine Making Process Explained
Updated: Aug 27
Wine is considered to be one of the oldest drinks in history. Over the eras, it has been used for rituals, religious festivals, and for its nutritional properties. It soon became an important aspect of the social sphere, rendering any social gathering incomplete without it. Wine making dates back to around 4,500 years and the first wines were made in the Middle East.
Wine making may sound complicated, but it is a relatively simple process in reality. Nowadays, one can find endless varieties of wine and different countries around the world have incorporated it into their cultures.
Below we will discuss the wine making process:
Picking the grapes
This is the first step in the wine making process. Typically, most vineyards will start off with white grapes then gradually move onto the red varieties. They are usually collected in bins and then taken to the crushing pad for further processing.
The grapes are harvested during the day and night both.
Crushing the grapes
In this step, it really doesn’t matter how the grapes were picked because they’re crushed in one way or the other. A destemmer is used to do this. This is an efficient winemaking machine that eliminates the stem and softly crushes the grapes without ruining their quality or taste.
When it comes to red wine for instance, the grapes are destemmed and crushed, and then are transported into a vat for fermentation with their skins. This is how the wine gets its red color. If it weren’t for this, the red grapes would end up making a white colored wine aka white wine!
Fermentation refers to the process of converting sugar into alcohol. Nowadays, advanced technology has given way to a range of techniques suitable for different varieties of grapes.
Many winemakers also choose to yeast nutrients to enhance the fermentation process.
Ageing the wine
How you choose to age your wine greatly depends on the kind of wine you’re looking to make. Oftentimes, ageing only adds to the flavor of the wine and intensifies it in nature.
Some ageing processes last for several months or years, and the wine is either stored in stainless steel or oak.
Bottle it up
After the ageing process is over and the winemaker decides to sell it, it’s time to bottle it up and the rest is history!
Many varieties of white wine are ready to be bottled after several months, whereas dry red varieties need a minimum 18-24 months before they can be ready for bottling.
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