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Instructions for Winemaking Grapes

If you have winemaking grapes, you can download some basic instructions for making wine from winemaking grapes.

If you don’t know what sort of grapes you have, think if you would like to make wine using the grapes as you would any other fruit http://www.makewine.co.nz/instructions-and-recipes or take a punt and make as you would from winemaking grapes (8kg/5L approx.) wine from winemaking grapes.

Some of what you decide will be quantity of grapes you are harvesting; if you have enough you can try both ways and see what you prefer.  Also if you have freezer space you can freeze in batches so you can experiment.

You will need around 8kg of grapes to make 5L of wine.

 

Basic Outline of Process for Red Wine

1/ Crush grapes   (you will need a crusher/stemmer or suitable food grade container to stomp or crush by hand eg a bucket)
2/ Ferment grapes  (you will need a suitable food grade container (with headroom as the skins will be pushed up by the ferment) - could be the same container as you stomped the grapes in).
3/ Press grapes  (you will need a wine press or you can achieve it by hand using a colander to strain and squeezing the skins by hand)
4/ Store/settle/mature/bottle/drink (ideally glass carboy/s)

 

Basic Outline of Process for White Wine

1/ Crush grapes
2/ Press grapes
3/ Ferment juice
4/ Store/settle/mature/bottle/drink

So the big difference between red and white is that red is fermenting "on the skins" whereas with white wine, just the juice is fermented.

 

What you will need:

You can purchase an all-you-need winemaking package, but these kits were designed for fruit wines.

Crusher/stemmer.  If you don't get one of these you will need a way to crush your grapes.  This can be done by stomping which is very effective and quite alot of fun.  

Food grade container.  You will need enough room to fit in the amount of grapes you will be fermenting/stomping, with enough headroom if you are fermenting on the skins, as the skins will rise considerably (maybe by 30%) when they are in active ferment.  A 20 litre bucket is a good size for 8kg of grapes(to make 5L wine).  Or a 30 litre fermenter.  You can also source a range of larger containers quite cheapy off trademe, if there is no lid it is fine to cover the container with a clean towel or other cover - the main purpose at this stage is to keep out insects etc.   A second food grade fermenter will be helpful for when you press (or strain).

Wine Press.  You can also do this by hand using a colander to drain out the free-run juice, then squeezing the skins by hand. 

Secondary fermenter/s with bung and airlock:  Usually for home winemakers this is glass carboy/s: 23L, 5L, bulk 5L, 11L although you can use PET fermenters and some home winemakers have stainless steel tanks or oak barrels.  

Hydrometer:  Not entirely necessary but this will predict alcohol content and may indicate you should add sugar to get the required alcohol content.  It can also help you identify if you have a stuck or finished ferment.

Ingredients:  the minimum is sulphite, winemaking yeast, nutrient, and pectolase.  Many people choose the ready packed wine ingredients kits - the basic should suffice but some people prefer the extra ingredients in the deluxe kit.