Wine Making Articles

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November 25, 2019

The Best Holiday Gift Guide For Wine Makers

For the makers, the crafters, and the do-it-your-selfers: give an experience that they'll remember for years to come! From wine making to homebrewing, Midwest Supplies has everything you need to complete your Christmas shopping from the comfort of your couch.  Step 1: Wine Making Gifts Step 2: Ho..... Read More

For the makers, the crafters, and the do-it-your-selfers: give an experience that they'll remember for years to come!..... Read More

November 15, 2019

How to Sweeten Wine

What can I use to sweeten my wine? So, you have opened the first wine bottle from a new batch, and it's too dry for your liking. It isn’t unusual for a homemade wine to be a little dry because we simply add wine yeast and let it ferment. A winery will take measurements throughout the fermentation..... Read More

What can I use to sweeten my wine? So, you have opened the first wine bottle from a new batch, and it's too dry for y..... Read More

November 05, 2019

How to Make Wine From Grapes

Here is a checklist of everything you will need to make wine from grapes: Fresh or Frozen Grapes Acid Testing Kit Tartaric Acid Hydrometer Wine Yeast Yeast Nutrient Wine Cap Punch Down Tool Ratchet Press Floating Thermometer 7.9 Gallon plastic fermenter 6 Gallon Carboy w/ a stopper and airlock R..... Read More

Here is a checklist of everything you will need to make wine from grapes: Fresh or Frozen Grapes Acid Testing Kit Ta..... Read More

October 29, 2019

Apple Wine Recipe (1 Gallon)

1 Gallon Apple Wine Recipe.. Read More

1 Gallon Apple Wine Recipe.. Read More

October 29, 2019

Improve Your Red Wine

Wine can, in fact, make itself, but it's up to us to make great wines and showcase the quality of the fruit we use. Step one is ultimately finding sound, well grow grapes. Step two is deciding what style of wine you wish to have in your glass once everything is said and done... Read More

Wine can, in fact, make itself, but it's up to us to make great wines and showcase the quality of the fruit we use. S..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I use a titret kit?

A titret kit is used to measure the amount of sulfur dioxide (SO2) in a wine. Sulfur dioxide has two main purposes when it comes to the storage of a wine. One purpose is it is an anti-microbial agent. This means that the SO2 will curtail the growth of undesirable yeast and bacteria. The second pu..... Read More

A titret kit is used to measure the amount of sulfur dioxide (SO2) in a wine. Sulfur dioxide has two main purposes wh..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Crystals formed in my wine bottle, why?

The crystals you see are potassium bitartrate. These will not actually hurt the wine, but are unsightly and a nuisance to get out of the bottles once emptied. This is excess tartaric acid that is precipitating out as a more complex compound. Potassium in the grape combines with tartaric acid to f..... Read More

The crystals you see are potassium bitartrate. These will not actually hurt the wine, but are unsightly and a nuisanc..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What is the difference in cork sizes?

"Does cork size really matter?" PDF Cork size can play a huge role on how long your wine is able to be stored because the size of the cork will determine howmuch air is allowed to transfer over time. What a lot of wine makers don’t realize is that you do want slight amounts ofair to come in cont..... Read More

"Does cork size really matter?" PDF Cork size can play a huge role on how long your wine is able to be stored becaus..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do you use a bladder press?

The Bladder Press was designed to improve the traditional wooden-basket ratchet-style press and has quickly become the preferred method for juice extraction. A rubber bladder expands from the stem outward using water pressure—pressing the fruit against the sides of the cage. This style of pressin..... Read More

The Bladder Press was designed to improve the traditional wooden-basket ratchet-style press and has quickly become th..... Read More

October 25, 2019

I am new to winemaking. How do I make wine?

Whether you're using one of our wine kits, or other wine ingredients, wine making is a lot easier than you might think. The recipe kits that Midwest offers come with pretty much everything that you need to make a great wine with your first recipe. They come with the wine yeast, sodium metabisulph..... Read More

Whether you're using one of our wine kits, or other wine ingredients, wine making is a lot easier than you might thin..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What equipment do I need to make wine from fruit?

The equipment needed to make Wine From Fruit is very similar to the equipment that you need to make Wine From Concentrate, so if you already have that equipment you will need very little else. We provide a complete list of all the equipment you will need to make fruit wine below, but keep in mind..... Read More

The equipment needed to make Wine From Fruit is very similar to the equipment that you need to make Wine From Concent..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I grow grapes from the vines I bought?

Introduction Planting and growing your own grapes for home winemaking can be one of the most rewarding steps in a home vintner’s process. With a little planning, education and luck, one can produce enough grapes to keep your household in wine for the whole following year. People have been growing..... Read More

Introduction Planting and growing your own grapes for home winemaking can be one of the most rewarding steps in a hom..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I use a ratchet press?

Our Italian made ratchet presses are very simple to use once you understand how they work. We’ll break it down for you here step-by-step. These instructions are for any of our ratchet presses, but note that the large ratchet presses (#40 and greater) have 2 ‘gears’. They have inner and outer slot..... Read More

Our Italian made ratchet presses are very simple to use once you understand how they work. We’ll break it down for yo..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I make wine from grapes?

First, here's a checklist of everything you will need to make wine from grapes: Fresh or Frozen Grapes Acid Testing Kit Tartaric Acid Hydrometer Yeast Yeast Nutrient Wine Cap Punch Down Tool Ratchet Press Wine making has been around for thousands of years. In its basic form, wine making is a ..... Read More

First, here's a checklist of everything you will need to make wine from grapes: Fresh or Frozen Grapes Acid Testing..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What equipment do I need to make wine?

You’ve made the decision to make wine, but want to know what type of equipment you need. We will give you a list of equipment to make things easier for you. Midwest also offers complete wine making kits that can make the process easier if you are just getting into wine making. For those that have..... Read More

You’ve made the decision to make wine, but want to know what type of equipment you need. We will give you a list of e..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What are the differences between the corkers? Will the plastic plunger corker that came with my kit be enough?

The plastic plunger corker does work fine, but it is more difficult to operate than the other corkers that we stock, and we recommend using only #8 corks with it. As for the other corkers, the basic rule of thumb is that the more you spend, the easier the corking chore becomes. The Metal Double L..... Read More

The plastic plunger corker does work fine, but it is more difficult to operate than the other corkers that we stock, ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What’s the difference between cleaning and sanitization? Why are they so important to winemaking?

90% of all winemaking failures can be traced to a lapse in cleaning or sanitization and yes, they are two different things. Cleaning chemicals remove visible dirt and residue from your equipment. Some good cleaners are: B-Brite, One Step, PBW, and Easy Clean. Sanitizing is treating your equipmen..... Read More

90% of all winemaking failures can be traced to a lapse in cleaning or sanitization and yes, they are two different t..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Is there anything to using a certain color, or shape, of bottle with my wine?

There are a lot of different choices available when it comes to the wine bottle. You have clear, amber, green, blue, frosted white or red for color choices. Then the bottles come in punted, semi punted, or no punt. What is a winemaker to do? Go with what you want to use. Yes, the bottle color and..... Read More

There are a lot of different choices available when it comes to the wine bottle. You have clear, amber, green, blue, ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I apply bottle wax to my wine bottles?

Use an old soup can: Take the label off and clean it out thoroughly. Pour 1/2 a bag of bottle wax into the soup can and place it in a saucepan that contains 3 inches of water. Then, heat the water until the wax is melted. Carefully dip the wine bottle into the wax. When you are done, simply cool ..... Read More

Use an old soup can: Take the label off and clean it out thoroughly. Pour 1/2 a bag of bottle wax into the soup can a..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I bottle my wine?

So you are ready to bottle your wine? Great. Bottling wine is very easy to do, but there are a few things to know to make sure your wine will last for a long time. First, here’s a list of everything you’ll need to bottle your wine: Auto Siphon - 5/16" Racking Cane Bottle Filler About 30 750 ml W..... Read More

So you are ready to bottle your wine? Great. Bottling wine is very easy to do, but there are a few things to know to ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Can I use screw cap bottles for my wine?

Sure! Studies are finding that in many ways, screw capped wines are actually better than natural cork and synthetic corks. The number one reason to use screw caps, is that you will not encounter any wine that has "cork taint," developed from a fungus that grows on corks and spoils wine. Studies..... Read More

Sure! Studies are finding that in many ways, screw capped wines are actually better than natural cork and synthetic c..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I apply the heat-shrinkable capsules to my bottles after they’ve been corked?

After all of your bottles have been safely filled and corked, you can choose to put heat-shrinkable capsules (shrink-caps) over the neck of the bottle. While not necessary to preserve the wine, they give a nice finished look to your bottles, and when coordinated with labels give your wine a profe..... Read More

After all of your bottles have been safely filled and corked, you can choose to put heat-shrinkable capsules (shrink-..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How should I store my wine?

The main concerns to storing your wine are: Temperature Temperature Stability Humidity Ventilation Darkness Wine is best stored between 40-65°F (4-18°C), optimally between 55-57°F (13-14°C). Even more important is temperature stability. Optimally the temperature in the cellar shouldn't fluctuate..... Read More

The main concerns to storing your wine are: Temperature Temperature Stability Humidity Ventilation Darkness Wine is ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

I see there are different types of corks available, why?

What Type of Wine Cork Should I Use?Wine Corks are made out of different materials for several reasons, and some will impact your decision on what type of cork to buy. You also have different grades of cork to confuse things even more, but once you understand what each type can do for you we thin..... Read More

What Type of Wine Cork Should I Use?Wine Corks are made out of different materials for several reasons, and some will..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What size corks should I use with my Plastic Plunger Corker?

Midwest suggests using only #8 corks with the plastic plunger corker. Larger corks are just too difficult to load into the corker, and even more difficult to force into the bottle. The reason that the plastic plunger corker is the one we include in our starter kit is that most winemakers eventual..... Read More

Midwest suggests using only #8 corks with the plastic plunger corker. Larger corks are just too difficult to load int..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to prepare corks

If you are using a high quality, iris compression jawed floor Corker there is no need to soak or sulfite any of the Wine Corks that Midwest Supplies sells. Simply insert them dry without any additional preparation. If you are using a small, hand-held corker (plunger, single or double-lever types..... Read More

If you are using a high quality, iris compression jawed floor Corker there is no need to soak or sulfite any of the W..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What do I need to do to a brand new barrel to prepare it for use?

A new barrel should be filled with water for few days or so before filling with wine as a new barrel will often leak. For leaks there are three things to do: Wait a few days. Swelling will stop a lot of leaks. If it still leaks between staves, pound the hoops towards the middle of the barrel to t..... Read More

A new barrel should be filled with water for few days or so before filling with wine as a new barrel will often leak...... Read More

October 25, 2019

Do you carry anything other than boxed wine kits?

How to make wine without a kitSometimes you just want to be able to experiment when making wine. Wine kits are great because they include everything, and are very easy to make. However, maybe you want to make a blend, or you just want something different. Midwest offers a couple different options..... Read More

How to make wine without a kitSometimes you just want to be able to experiment when making wine. Wine kits are great ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What head space do I need in my secondary when making wine?

You’ve got your wine transferred and are ready to add the metabisulphite to your wine. Head space becomes important after you have added the metabisulphite because you are killing the wine yeast. Up until now, your wine has been fermenting and that creates a CO2 layer over the wine. This CO2 laye..... Read More

You’ve got your wine transferred and are ready to add the metabisulphite to your wine. Head space becomes important a..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why are my corks popping out of the bottle?

Your corks keep popping out because you are bottling your wine too early and it is continuing to ferment in the bottle. As the yeast consumes the sugar still in the wine, it produces both alcohol and carbon dioxide (CO2) gas. In your carboy, the CO2 escapes through the airlock as bubbles. Once yo..... Read More

Your corks keep popping out because you are bottling your wine too early and it is continuing to ferment in the bottl..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why are my corks turning red?

Your corks are probably turning red because wine has gotten between the cork and the sides of the bottle neck. This happens because when you force a cork into a bottle, the air between the cork and the wine gets compressed. If you leave the bottle standing upright for 2-3 days, the pressure will ..... Read More

Your corks are probably turning red because wine has gotten between the cork and the sides of the bottle neck. This h..... Read More

October 25, 2019

I’ve noticed a little bit of mold on top of the corks of some of my wines. Is the wine spoiled? Is the bottle leaking?

This isn’t necessarily a sign that your wine has leaked through. It could be that a small amount of wine stayed on top of the cork at bottling and has molded there. Carefully wipe the top of the cork and the bottle neck with a clean damp cloth before extracting the cork, and the wine should be fine... Read More

This isn’t necessarily a sign that your wine has leaked through. It could be that a small amount of wine stayed on to..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What causes hydrogen sulfide (HS2) contamination (rotten egg smell)?

There are many things that can cause hydrogen sulfide contamination, all are preventable: Too much sulfite, usually the result of grapes being dusted with too much sulfur during the growing season. Lack of proper nutrients (nitrogen, yeast hulls) during fermentation. Yeast combining with various ..... Read More

There are many things that can cause hydrogen sulfide contamination, all are preventable: Too much sulfite, usually t..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why does my wine have a brown tint to it?

The reason your wine browns is because it is oxidizing. All wines oxidize, but well-made, well-protected, and well-balanced wines resist oxidation for many, many years, and exceptional wines can last for 50-100 years without doing so. To last that long, the wine has to have three characteristics:..... Read More

The reason your wine browns is because it is oxidizing. All wines oxidize, but well-made, well-protected, and well-ba..... Read More

October 25, 2019

My wine is too dry, the gravity is below 0.990, and tastes pretty lousy. How can I fix it?

The first step is making sure the wine has stabilized and will not re-ferment in the bottle. Midwest also suggests adding one crushed Campden tablet per gallon to the wine and let it sit 24 hours before sweetening or bottling--to keep the wine from absorbing oxygen during the process. Next is cho..... Read More

The first step is making sure the wine has stabilized and will not re-ferment in the bottle. Midwest also suggests ad..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I use an acid testing kit?

Acid testing kits can help you know how much acid you are dealing with in your wine. Specifically, these kits are testing for tartaric acid. By testing the acid level in your wine, you are able to adjust it as you need to, but you can only adjust the wine so much otherwise you end up with a chalk..... Read More

Acid testing kits can help you know how much acid you are dealing with in your wine. Specifically, these kits are tes..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why does it take so long for my wine to be drinkable? I want it now!

Wine kits are ready to bottle in 28 or 45 days. This does NOT mean that they are ready to drink. If you really, really can’t wait, the minimum time before a kit tastes good is about one month after bottling. This is long enough for the wine to get over the shock of bottling, and begin opening up ..... Read More

Wine kits are ready to bottle in 28 or 45 days. This does NOT mean that they are ready to drink. If you really, reall..... Read More

October 25, 2019

I have a 5 gal bucket that was used for pickles or Sauerkraut. Can I use it for Winemaking?

Re-using plastic pails from other sources, like buckets that previously held food products, is always a mistake. The food odors will have sunk into the plastic, and will taint the wine. Also, plastic items not intended for food purposes, such as brand-new garbage pails must never be used for wine..... Read More

Re-using plastic pails from other sources, like buckets that previously held food products, is always a mistake. The ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Do I need to use preservatives in my wine?

Preservatives (sulfites) are an important part of wine making. Don’t worry about adding them to your home-made wine. Not only do they keep wine from developing infections, they also keep the wine from oxidizing. If you are concerned about the use of sulfites in wine read on! The preservative we m..... Read More

Preservatives (sulfites) are an important part of wine making. Don’t worry about adding them to your home-made wine. ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why do I need to stabilize my wine before bottling? Can I bottle it immediately after it is stabilized, or should I wait ten days?

Wine is stabilized to stop fermentation so that remaining yeast do not ferment added or residual sugar after bottling and cause the bottles to explode. After stabilizing, suspended yeast die off and lay down a thin layer of lees. If the wine has been bottled, the lees are trapped and are not only..... Read More

Wine is stabilized to stop fermentation so that remaining yeast do not ferment added or residual sugar after bottling..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What is the best temperature to ferment my wine?

Most wine ingredient kit instructions tell you to ferment your wine within a specific temperature range. Midwest recommends 65 °F to 75 °F. Yeast thrives at these temperatures, and also likes to be kept at the same temperature until its done doing its work.If the fermentation area is too cool, th..... Read More

Most wine ingredient kit instructions tell you to ferment your wine within a specific temperature range. Midwest reco..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I make wine with Alexander's Red Wine Concentrate?

Here is the 5 gallon recipe, which requires two 46 oz. can's of Alexander's (red wine) concentrate: Alexander's Concentrate: two 46 fl. oz. cans Cold water (approximately 50°F): 11 1/2 cans White Granular Sugar: 8 cups Yeast Nutrient:\t3 tsp. Bentonite: 4 tsp. (3/4 oz.) Wine Yeast: 1 pkg. (1/3 oz..... Read More

Here is the 5 gallon recipe, which requires two 46 oz. can's of Alexander's (red wine) concentrate: Alexander's Conce..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I make wine from Alexander's White Wine concentrates?

Here is the 5 gallon recipe, which requires two 46 oz. can's of Alexander's (white wine) concentrate: Alexander's Concentrate: two 46 fl. oz. cans Cold water (approximately 50°F): 11 1/2 cans White Granular Sugar: 5 cups Yeast Nutrient:\t3 tsp. Bentonite: 4 tsp. (3/4 oz.) Wine Yeast: 1 pkg. (1/3 ..... Read More

Here is the 5 gallon recipe, which requires two 46 oz. can's of Alexander's (white wine) concentrate: Alexander's Con..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What's the difference between yeast nutrient, yeast energizer, and diammonium phosphate?

Diammonium Phosphate is a form of Yeast Nutrient, so this will be a discussion about the difference between Yeast Nutrient and Yeast Energizer. Yeast Nutrient is a collection of vital building blocks that yeast need to preform healthy fermentation. The process of alcoholic fermentation is an ardu..... Read More

Diammonium Phosphate is a form of Yeast Nutrient, so this will be a discussion about the difference between Yeast Nut..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I lubricate the gears on the Mini Jet Pump?

Tools required: Philips screw driver, small flat screw driver and/or pen knife. Petroleum jelly. Remove four screws located around the black front face of the pump. If you lay your filter on its back, looking down at the pump, it will be easier to work. Inside you will find a black plastic piece..... Read More

Tools required: Philips screw driver, small flat screw driver and/or pen knife. Petroleum jelly. Remove four screws ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

My Super Jet Filter won't prime?

This particular Wine Filter works on a check-valve system. The check-valve is a functioning part of the pump and will deteriorate due to the acidity from the wine. It is easily replaced. By not allowing solid particulate like oak chips etc. to get into the pump your check-valve will last longer. ..... Read More

This particular Wine Filter works on a check-valve system. The check-valve is a functioning part of the pump and will..... Read More

October 25, 2019

My Mini Jet pump isn't working

This is a problem which most users of the Mini Jet will not encounter. It is caused by a gear inside the pump becoming stuck due to: failure to flush out the pump properly after the last filtering session oak chips becoming trapped between the gears or allowing the pump to run dry. This problem i..... Read More

This is a problem which most users of the Mini Jet will not encounter. It is caused by a gear inside the pump becomin..... Read More

October 25, 2019

I have air going into my pump and my wine is foaming.

There are 3 possibilities that your wine may be foaming... The wine is very young and carbon dioxide (CO2) is present. The pump will release this gas simply due to the action of the pump. Release of CO2 from the wine is a good thing; most kits recommend agitating the wine to help release this gas..... Read More

There are 3 possibilities that your wine may be foaming... The wine is very young and carbon dioxide (CO2) is present..... Read More

October 25, 2019

I have no suction on my Super Jet Filter, do I need a new motor?

There are a few reasons that the Super Jet Wine Filter can lose suction, most of which can be fixed with a simple adjustment. The following is a list of troubleshooting points to check for: The intake hose is loose on the pump. The vinyl intake tube can get stretched over time and allow air to le..... Read More

There are a few reasons that the Super Jet Wine Filter can lose suction, most of which can be fixed with a simple adj..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine is leaking out of the Buon Vino pads.

Please read the Suggestions and Recommendations sheet supplied with the product. A small amount of leakage is normal from a plate and frame filter, due to the capillary nature of the filter pads. Allow the drip tray to drain into the fermentor you are filtering from. If you did not rack your wine..... Read More

Please read the Suggestions and Recommendations sheet supplied with the product. A small amount of leakage is normal ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why Should I use "Buon Vino" Filter Pads?

You should use Buon Vino Filter Pads for your Wine Filter because the micron sizes and consistency of Buon Vino Filter Pads have been designed to give optimal performance when used with Buon Vino wine filters. The flow rate of the pump is designed to work in conjunction with the Buon Vino Filter ..... Read More

You should use Buon Vino Filter Pads for your Wine Filter because the micron sizes and consistency of Buon Vino Filte..... Read More

October 25, 2019

My gauge on my Super Jet Filter is not registering.

Due to the acidity in wine, the small plate that registers your pressure will deteriorate and you simply need to replace it. Unscrew the gauge to remove it and replace it with the new one. Make sure you put Teflon tape on the threaded portion to prevent any leaking... Read More

Due to the acidity in wine, the small plate that registers your pressure will deteriorate and you simply need to repl..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I store my wine for a long time?

"What do I want to do if I plan on storing my wine for several years?" PDF Properly storing a wine can be just as important as how you made the wine. There is nothing worse than pulling out a bottle of your own vino for friends to try only to find out that it has gone bad. A few simple things tha..... Read More

"What do I want to do if I plan on storing my wine for several years?" PDF Properly storing a wine can be just as imp..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why should I filter my wine? What are the advantages?

Whether or not to use a Wine Filter has been debated by winemakers as long as there have been filters. Some winemakers feel the only way to make wine is the 'natural way', letting the wine clear on its own, even if it does take a year or so. Other winemakers filter their wines to clear them so th..... Read More

Whether or not to use a Wine Filter has been debated by winemakers as long as there have been filters. Some winemaker..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wines and Acids

Wine grapes naturally produce organic acids, including tartaric, malic and citric acid (in smaller quantities). Other acids, such as lactic acid, are produced during fermentation. In the proper amounts they give a pleasing and refreshing taste to the wines.When excessive acid is present the wine ..... Read More

Wine grapes naturally produce organic acids, including tartaric, malic and citric acid (in smaller quantities). Other..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why do I need to stir my wine when adding stabilizers and fining agents?

When it comes time to stabilize and fine the wine, it has to be stirred vigorously enough to drive off all of the CO2 that has accumulated during fermentation.This is because the dissolved gas will attach to the fining agents, preventing them from settling out. You need to stir hard enough to mak..... Read More

When it comes time to stabilize and fine the wine, it has to be stirred vigorously enough to drive off all of the CO2..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What are the proper conditions to store my wine?

The main concerns to storing your wine are: Temperature Temperature Stability Humidity Ventilation Darkness Wine is best stored between 40-65°F (4-18°C), optimally between 55-57°F (13-14°C). Even more important is temperature stability. Optimally the temperature in the cellar shouldn't fluctuate ..... Read More

The main concerns to storing your wine are: Temperature Temperature Stability Humidity Ventilation Darkness Wine is b..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What is the correct acid level for wines? How do I adjust the acid level up or down?

The following are guidelines for the desired acid levels in various types of wines- Individual tastes may vary, so make adjustments according to your own palate. Dry White Wine—0.65 % - 0.75 % Sweet White Wine—0.70 % - 0.85 % Dry Red Wine—0.60 % - 0.70 % Sweet Red Wine—0.65 % - 0.80 % These figur..... Read More

The following are guidelines for the desired acid levels in various types of wines- Individual tastes may vary, so ma..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I create more tannin flavor in my wine?

Tannin is usually added to the must before fermentation begins, but this is not absolutely necessary and, in your case, not even desired. We add it to most non-grape wines before fermenting, but often adjust it upward by taste, just before bottling. This can be a delicate process. When the wine h..... Read More

Tannin is usually added to the must before fermentation begins, but this is not absolutely necessary and, in your cas..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Use Bentonite

Bentonite as a fining agentBentonite is, indeed, a fining agent. Fining is the action of removing particles that make a haze in wine by combining them with materials that bind to them and force them out of suspension, leaving the wine clear and bright. It not only improves a wine’s appearance; it..... Read More

Bentonite as a fining agentBentonite is, indeed, a fining agent. Fining is the action of removing particles that make..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Is testing the pH of my wine that important?

Is testing the pH of my wine that important?When a vintner makes a wine from juice concentrate, testing for acid or pH levels really isn't that important because the juice is pretty well balanced by the manufacturer. Unless you know you are using an out of balance water, there is very little reas..... Read More

Is testing the pH of my wine that important?When a vintner makes a wine from juice concentrate, testing for acid or p..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I determine the alcohol content of my wine?

Simple subtraction. Take a hydrometer reading right before you pitch the wine yeast into your must (see “How do I take a hydrometer reading?” in FAQs). Make a note of this reading, which should be in the range between 1.060 and 1.120, depending on the recipe and style you are making. After the fe..... Read More

Simple subtraction. Take a hydrometer reading right before you pitch the wine yeast into your must (see “How do I tak..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What wine styles benefit from oaking?

Several types of wine lend themselves well to oaking, most notably Cabernet, Chardonnay, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Bordeaux, Chianti, Burgundy, Fume Blanc, Semillon, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Gris, Shiraz, and Pinot Blanc, just to name a few. Generally speaking, German wines are not us..... Read More

Several types of wine lend themselves well to oaking, most notably Cabernet, Chardonnay, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc, Pin..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why bother with a barrel?

Oak adds a compelling complexity to wine. You should make sure the kind of wine you want to make is well suited for oak, since it is more expensive and more work. For example, just about any high tannin red wine will benefit. Many whites such as chardonnay or Sauvignon blanc will benefit as well...... Read More

Oak adds a compelling complexity to wine. You should make sure the kind of wine you want to make is well suited for o..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What is a cap? What is "punching down"? Why is it important to punch down?

If you’ve ever attempted to make a big red wine at home from fresh grapes - but the finished product lacked color, taste, or tannin structure - chances are, your wine could have benefited from a winemaking technique known as “punching down”. If you make wines from kits, you will certainly benefit..... Read More

If you’ve ever attempted to make a big red wine at home from fresh grapes - but the finished product lacked color, ta..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Is my wine ready to bottle?

If your wine is clear, stable, and free of CO2, its ready. Clear means free of particles that could later fall out of suspension and leave a deposit in the bottles. Stable means finished fermenting and with enough sulfites (SO2) present to prevent oxidation and spoiling. Free of CO2 means that al..... Read More

If your wine is clear, stable, and free of CO2, its ready. Clear means free of particles that could later fall out of..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I care for my oak barrel?

Welcome to the amazing world of Barrel ownership! With your new friend you are entering a new and exciting level of wine making. With due diligence and proper up keep of your barrel it will serve you in your wine making for years to come. First let’s get to know your barrel with a little anatomy ..... Read More

Welcome to the amazing world of Barrel ownership! With your new friend you are entering a new and exciting level of w..... Read More

October 25, 2019

General Barrel Information

Don’t reuse a barrel in which wine has turned to vinegar; it’s impossible to get rid of the vinegar bacteria from the wood. Use the barrel as a planter in your yard. It’s generally not a good idea to mix wine types in a barrel, or white and red wine. You will taste the previous wine in the subseq..... Read More

Don’t reuse a barrel in which wine has turned to vinegar; it’s impossible to get rid of the vinegar bacteria from the..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I use Sparkolloid?

Derived from algae, this clarifier is good for reducing haze-causing proteins in light wines. Mix one teaspoon per gallon of wine into 1 or 2 cups of boiling water. Boil for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. While solution is still warm, mix into 6 gallons of wine and stir gently. For best resul..... Read More

Derived from algae, this clarifier is good for reducing haze-causing proteins in light wines. Mix one teaspoon per ga..... Read More

October 25, 2019

I just put a new set of pads in my filter and my gauge shot up very quickly.

Check to see if you have placed your pads and/or filter plates in the filter housing correctly. Identify the type of wine you are making to the grade of pad you are using. If your gauge rises quickly, this means that your pads are blinding (clogging) quickly. You may need to filter with a coarser..... Read More

Check to see if you have placed your pads and/or filter plates in the filter housing correctly. Identify the type of ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How long should I store a wine before I drink it?

Although the concentrate wine kits can be done quickly, some winemakers elect to store the wine longer before they start to drink it. The reason is because a good wine can become a great wine when you allow it to age. However, this is all a matter of taste to the individual. Some wine drinkers re..... Read More

Although the concentrate wine kits can be done quickly, some winemakers elect to store the wine longer before they st..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I use a crusher/destemmer?

A crusher/destemmer is one of the best items you can own when it comes to wine making. These units are great for grape wines, but they can also make softer fruits easier to press. Keep in mind that this unit is not designed to take the stem off strawberries, but it can help pulp them up a bit. Th..... Read More

A crusher/destemmer is one of the best items you can own when it comes to wine making. These units are great for grap..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why Blend Wines?

There are several reasons a home winemaker might want to utilize blends. A good example is to blend a wine that is too dry with one that is too sweet to create a more balanced wine. In this instance, the two wines should be similarly based, both Merlots, for example. You may also want to blend wi..... Read More

There are several reasons a home winemaker might want to utilize blends. A good example is to blend a wine that is to..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How do I make wine with one of your kits?

It's really very easy! First, make sure that all of your equipment from your wine making kit is clean and sanitized. Then, you carefully pour the juice into your primary fermenter, and top it off to 6 gallons with water. Next, pour your wine yeast in, and stir the mixture with a sanitized spoon...... Read More

It's really very easy! First, make sure that all of your equipment from your wine making kit is clean and sanitized...... Read More

October 25, 2019

Once I purchase a Winemaking Equipment Kit, what other equipment will I need to make wine?

Our wine making kits are a great place to start making wine at home, but there are a few extra things you’ll need to complete the process. When it’s time to bottle your first batch, you will need 30 wine bottles for your 6 gallon batch of wine. Our winemaking equipment kits come with 30 corks, af..... Read More

Our wine making kits are a great place to start making wine at home, but there are a few extra things you’ll need to ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Liquid malt vs. dried malt, What is the difference? Do I use the same amount?

The primary difference between liquid and dry malt extract is the amount of water in each. Because the two types of malt are different in water content, a pound of liquid extract and a pound of dry extract differ in sugar content as well. Therefore, liquid and dry extract are not interchangeable ..... Read More

The primary difference between liquid and dry malt extract is the amount of water in each. Because the two types of m..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Grilling and Wine

Beer goes with outdoor cooking, there's no question. But there are wines that go well--or perhaps, better--than beer with your grilled foods. Here are my top tips for enjoying your wine in the backyards, along with some Master Vintner pairings that will set off your food and impress your gu..... Read More

Beer goes with outdoor cooking, there's no question. But there are wines that go well--or perhaps, better--than..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine Crystals

If you make wine long enough, chances are you're eventually going to see a strange phenomenon in your bottle. You'll be all set to enjoy a glass of your delicious white, red or pink wine, pull the wine cork and there are tiny little shards, looking like crystal or glass, either on the cork ..... Read More

If you make wine long enough, chances are you're eventually going to see a strange phenomenon in your bottle. Y..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine Storage Temperature

The Snow Miser I'm Mister White Christmas I'm Mister Snow I'm Mister Icicle I'm Mister Ten Below Friends call me Snow Miser What ever I touch Turns to snow in my clutch I'm too much! --The Snow Miser I'm pretty sure that Rankin-Bass didn't include any w..... Read More

The Snow Miser I'm Mister White Christmas I'm Mister Snow I'm Mister Icicle I'm Mister Ten ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Degassing Your Wine

Degassing is one of those things that seems like it should be really easy to accomplish, but in practice it’s one of the most vexing areas of kit winemaking, to both amateurs and experienced vintners alike. The important thing to keep in mind is that when you use an implement to degas..... Read More

Degassing is one of those things that seems like it should be really easy to accomplish, but in practice it’s o..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Keeping Fruit Flies Out of Wine

Summer is here: for winemakers that heralds the inevitable return of our sworn enemy, Drosophila Melanogaster — the common fruit fly. A tiny little flying monkey of doom, it’s hard to exclude them from your winemaking areas, and while easy to kill, by the time you've swatted one, thirteen m..... Read More

Summer is here: for winemakers that heralds the inevitable return of our sworn enemy, Drosophila Melanogaster —..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Use a Hydrometer in Wine Making

Understanding Your Hydrometer A hydrometer is a sealed, hollow, cylindrical glass tube with weight at the bottom and a graduated scale running up the tube. Like a thermometer, your hydrometer tells you something about your wine--and it has even more tricks than plain old temperature. ..... Read More

Understanding Your Hydrometer A hydrometer is a sealed, hollow, cylindrical glass tube with weight at the bott..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Choosing Wine Yeast

We spend a lot of time thinking about yeast--unless someone is a professional baker they probably don't think about yeast very much at all, but as a winemaker, you need a good feel for how your yeast is going to work. Without it you won't get wine, just sweet grape juice--and that's no fun ..... Read More

We spend a lot of time thinking about yeast--unless someone is a professional baker they probably don't think a..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Can I Make Non-Alcoholic Wine?

First, while there’s no satisfactory way to make wine without alcohol (that’s just fruit juice) there is a way to get the alcohol out of your wine after it’s finished. But the wine will be absolutely awful. There are some acceptable-tasting commercial non-alcohol wines. I can’t say ..... Read More

First, while there’s no satisfactory way to make wine without alcohol (that’s just fruit juice) there is a way ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Organic, Vegan, Gluten-Free Wine

We get a lot of questions about winemaking, our wines, and our wine ingredients. Today we'll talk about two that come up frequently. First, Angela from San Diego writes: Dear Master Vintner, I've been making wine for a while and I love it. But one of my friends is celiac and has a te..... Read More

We get a lot of questions about winemaking, our wines, and our wine ingredients. Today we'll talk about two tha..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Tim's Favorite Wine Kits

I get asked all the time, “What’s your favorite wine?” That’s like asking a parent, “Who’s your favorite child?” Of course you have one, but who wants to say out loud? I rarely have less than a dozen wines in my cellar or on tap at home. But there are a few that I return to again and again,..... Read More

I get asked all the time, “What’s your favorite wine?” That’s like asking a parent, “Who’s your favorite child?..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Taste Wine

If you're like most home winemakers, you love your wine, enjoy making it and sharing it with family and friends, but you may not be as confident in your general wine knowledge as you are with your vinting skills. You can tackle the book learning part of your knowledge base pretty easil..... Read More

If you're like most home winemakers, you love your wine, enjoy making it and sharing it with family and friend..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Should I Chill a Red Wine?

Chilling Out: A Frosty Glass of Red Wine, the Perfect Summer Drink Sunshine in a glass Almost all wine books and guidelines will tell you to serve your reds at 'cellar temperature', which is 55-60°F. That's because the tannins in a really bold red wine like Cabernet Sauvigno..... Read More

Chilling Out: A Frosty Glass of Red Wine, the Perfect Summer Drink Sunshine in a glass Almost a..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Age Wine

The top question beginner winemakers always ask is, “How long will my wine last?” It's surprisingly difficult to answer that question. If you look at historical purchase patterns for most home winemakers you could say, “About a month and a half, because your friends and family love it so mu..... Read More

The top question beginner winemakers always ask is, “How long will my wine last?” It's surprisingly difficult t..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Does Wine Need to Age?

Modern society loves new things. The latest smartphone, the current fashion, the new movie release, we all want to be up to date and fresh. But fresh isn't always better. On the other hand, it isn't necessarily worse. Fresh is just 'fresh' and quality comes from other sources than mere ne..... Read More

Modern society loves new things. The latest smartphone, the current fashion, the new movie release, we all want..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine Alcohol by Volume (ABV)

One of the things about home winemaking that eventually occurs to everyone who does it is that you're actually making alcohol--that's kind of the point. Unlike the bottles you get from commercial vineyards and liquor stores, the wine you make won't come with a label attesting to the ABV. ..... Read More

One of the things about home winemaking that eventually occurs to everyone who does it is that you're actually m..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Taking Care of Wine Corks

What is a Cork? Corks, the original kind are made from the bark of the cork oak, which is harvested once every 20 years without endangering the trees’ life. For centuries they were simply punched-out cylinders of cleaned bark, but innovation has brought many kinds of manufactured corks..... Read More

What is a Cork? Corks, the original kind are made from the bark of the cork oak, which is harvested once e..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Filtering Wine

Sometimes it seems like filtering is the final frontier of home winemaking. For every winemaker who filters, there are dozens who don’t. Some because the wine is just fine without filtering (and it is!), others because they don’t want to bother with the extra step or the expense, and others..... Read More

Sometimes it seems like filtering is the final frontier of home winemaking. For every winemaker who filters, th..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Coffee Roasted with Wine

Wine and Coffee, a Match Made In the Roaster A darn fine cup of coffee Last year I was visiting Master Vintner HQ and while I was there, Brewmaster Brad gave me a couple of pounds of green coffee beans that had been aged in a bourbon barrel. They smelled strongly of vanilla and ..... Read More

Wine and Coffee, a Match Made In the Roaster A darn fine cup of coffee Last year I was visiting Mas..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine and Beef Pairings

Pairing wine and food should be fun. It intimidates some people, as though there were really a wrong way to enjoy good food and good wine, and it could spoil your whole day. Nothing could be further from the truth—the one real rule is that any wine you want to drink, with any food that you w..... Read More

Pairing wine and food should be fun. It intimidates some people, as though there were really a wrong way to enjo..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine Braised Beef Short Ribs Recipe

The tannins in Cabernets Sauvignon make it a fantastic pairing for red meat and rich sauces, especially beef that's been slow cooked. Here's one of my favorite recipes for short ribs. Braised Beef Short Ribs 4 pounds boneless beef short ribs, cut into 1/2 pound portions 2 cups Sommelie..... Read More

The tannins in Cabernets Sauvignon make it a fantastic pairing for red meat and rich sauces, especially beef that..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Red Wine Ribs Recipe

Summertime can mean only one thing: barbecue. Whether it’s succulent brisket, tender, smoky chicken or falling-off-the-bone ribs, barbecue is just about the best food you can eat on a sunny day, and my personal favorite is without a doubt ribs, especially if I get to enjoy it with a great g..... Read More

Summertime can mean only one thing: barbecue. Whether it’s succulent brisket, tender, smoky chicken or falling-..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Sulfite Allergies: The Facts

There's no such thing as an allergic reaction to sulfite. As someone once observed, that's a bold statement. It's probably the most controversial thing I've ever said, and I say it a lot. And, I’m going to say it a bunch of times, right here. Sadly, the Internet seems to have become a..... Read More

There's no such thing as an allergic reaction to sulfite. As someone once observed, that's a bold statement. ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Do I Have to Use Sulfite in my Wine?

Readers Write, and we Answer! Do I have to use sulfite in my wine kit? I'm concerned about additives in my food and I wonder if I can avoid it. I know it prevents spoilage, but could I pasteurize my wine or filter it to keep it from going bad? Concerned in Connecticut Dear C in C, ..... Read More

Readers Write, and we Answer! Do I have to use sulfite in my wine kit? I'm concerned about additives in my f..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Residual Sugar in Wine

Dear Tim, I love your Master Vintner™ wine kits, and really like the wine I'm making with them. I've recently started exercising, and I've gone on a ketogenic diet and I want to figure out how many total carbohydrates there are in my wine Master Vintner™ Sommelier Select Old Vines Merlot. ..... Read More

Dear Tim, I love your Master Vintner™ wine kits, and really like the wine I'm making with them. I've recently ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Water and Wine Making

Rime Of The Ancient Mariner Water, water, everywhere, And all the boards did shrink; Water, water, everywhere, Nor any drop to drink. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner Samuel Taylor Coleridge, 1798 I was toddling around an internet winemaking forum this past week ..... Read More

Rime Of The Ancient Mariner Water, water, everywhere, And all the boards did shrink; Water, wa..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Bentonite Clay in Wine Making

Readers Write: The Case of the Missing Bentonite An astute winemaker contacted me with a very pertinent question. Tim, I did the Master Vintner Pinot Noir yesterday and was kind of surprised that there was no Bentonite. I thought that you had thought this was a good thing in kit wi..... Read More

Readers Write: The Case of the Missing Bentonite An astute winemaker contacted me with a very pertinent ques..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Headspace in Wine Making

Headspace is the gap between the top of your wine and the bottom of the airlock or lid. Sometimes you need the space for foam to rise up and subsequently collapse, and sometimes it's a detriment because it can allow oxygen to affect the wine. Here's how to decide when headspace is beneficia..... Read More

Headspace is the gap between the top of your wine and the bottom of the airlock or lid. Sometimes you need the ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Why Do You Concentrate Wine?

I get a lot of questions--hundreds and hundreds of them--but fortunately I have a great big pile of answers. Today's question comes from Rod from Missoula--Hi Rod! He writes: "The label on my kit says it contains concentrated grape juice along with the other ingredients. How is concentra..... Read More

I get a lot of questions--hundreds and hundreds of them--but fortunately I have a great big pile of answers. To..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine Skins in Recipe Kits

I was on the Facebook home winemaking forum (I hang out there quite a bit, so if you have questions, drop by) the other day when I got hit up with a really good question. Below is my expanded answer to SD. Just a general question on wine kits . . . I like kits that come with the skins. ..... Read More

I was on the Facebook home winemaking forum (I hang out there quite a bit, so if you have questions, drop by) t..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Making Fruit Wine with Wine Kits

Grapes are the only fruit that can make wine without any other additions--they don't need water, or extra sugar or much of anything except a place to ferment. Other fruits take a bit more work: many need to be peeled or crushed and mixed with sugar and water to get the most flavour from th..... Read More

Grapes are the only fruit that can make wine without any other additions--they don't need water, or extra sugar..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Fermenting Wine has Sulfur Smell

Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is the rotten egg odor you smell, and it usually forms at the end of fermentation. Most home winemakers won’t notice a smelly problem until the first racking. If you do smell rotten eggs, the quicker you can act, the better your chances of saving the wine. If your wine is n..... Read More

Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is the rotten egg odor you smell, and it usually forms at the end of fermentation. Most home w..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Cleaning and Sanitizing Wine Equipment

A question popped up in a FaceBook group I follow and I thought it was something worth sharing Jessica wrote: I have a question about sanitizing. The Master Vintners wine kits instruct to clean with Oxygen Wash, rinse thoroughly, then sanitize with metabisulfite solution. If you are u..... Read More

A question popped up in a FaceBook group I follow and I thought it was something worth sharing Jessica wrote..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Setting up your Wine Making Space

If you search a bit on the internet, you'll see a lot of different home wine making setups. Some will make you sigh with envy--an entire converted garage or outbuilding, or part (or all!) of a basement, and even dedicated cellar spaces that look like a generation of professional winemaker..... Read More

If you search a bit on the internet, you'll see a lot of different home wine making setups. Some will make yo..... Read More

October 25, 2019

The Secret History of Wine Kits

Modern wine kits, like Master Vintner, are excellent examples of consumer-friendly DIY products: high quality ingredients, complete with everything you need, designed to work with custom built wine making kits, and packed into a sleek box with instructions that help you make great wine from..... Read More

Modern wine kits, like Master Vintner, are excellent examples of consumer-friendly DIY products: high quality i..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Shiraz

Master Vintner Spotlight: Shiraz This is the fifth in our series of blog posts taking a look at the type of grapes we use in Master Vintner wine kits. Grape varieties each one have their own unique character and response to the sunlight and soil of the region they're grown in. I'll be talk..... Read More

Master Vintner Spotlight: Shiraz This is the fifth in our series of blog posts taking a look at the type of gr..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Rosé

In honor of International Rosé day, lets talk about pink wine—that’s what the word means in French, pinkish. In modern times, pink wine has been associated with either cheap and cheerful sparkling wine from Portugal (Mateus) or quite sweet ‘blush’ wines like White Zinfandel, invented in the..... Read More

In honor of International Rosé day, lets talk about pink wine—that’s what the word means in French, pinkish. In..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Riesling

Riesling History: Riesling wines are versatile white wines that easily dance the spectrum between intensely sweet to extremely dry. A massive planting of Riesling grapes at Schloss Johannisberg in 1720 contributed to Germany becoming the Riesling capital that it is today. If you’re thinking of t..... Read More

Riesling History: Riesling wines are versatile white wines that easily dance the spectrum between intensely sweet to..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Pinot Noir

Maya: So why are you so into Pinots? They’re like a thing with you. Miles: “It’s a hard grape to grow, as you know. It’s thin-skinned, temperamental. It’s not a survivor like Cabernet that can grow anywhere and thrive even when neglected. Pinot needs constant care and attention, you know..... Read More

Maya: So why are you so into Pinots? They’re like a thing with you. Miles: “It’s a hard grape to grow, as yo..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Pinot Grigio

Master Vintner Varietal Spotlight: Pinot Grigio This is the fifth in our series discussing the grapes we use in Master Vintner wine kits. Grapes all have their own unique character and response to the sunlight and soil of the region they're grown in. I'll be talking about all of the grapes..... Read More

Master Vintner Varietal Spotlight: Pinot Grigio This is the fifth in our series discussing the grapes we use i..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Moscato

Master Vintner Varietal Spotlight: Moscato This is the fourth in our series of blog posts taking a look at the type of grapes we use in Master Vintner wine kits. Grape types are known as 'varietals' and each one has its own unique character and response to the sunlight and soil of the reg..... Read More

Master Vintner Varietal Spotlight: Moscato This is the fourth in our series of blog posts taking a look at th..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Merlot

Master Vintner® Varietal Spotlight: Merlot This is the third in our series of blog posts taking a look at the type of grapes we use in Master Vintner® wine kits. Grape types are known as 'varietals' and each one has its own unique character and response to the sunlight and soil of the regi..... Read More

Master Vintner® Varietal Spotlight: Merlot This is the third in our series of blog posts taking a look at the ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Chardonnay

Master Vintner Varietal Spotlight: Chardonnay In this series of blog posts I'm taking a look at the type of grapes we us in Master Vintner wine kits. Grape types are known as 'varietals' and each one has its own unique character and response to the sunlight and soil of the region they're g..... Read More

Master Vintner Varietal Spotlight: Chardonnay In this series of blog posts I'm taking a look at the type of gr..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine: Cabernet Sauvignon

Master Vintner Varietal Spotlight: Cabernet Sauvignon I'm taking a look at the type of grapes we use in Master Vintner wine kits. Grape types are known as 'varietals' and every one has its own unique character and response to the sunlight and soil of the region they're grown in. Winema..... Read More

Master Vintner Varietal Spotlight: Cabernet Sauvignon I'm taking a look at the type of grapes we use in Master..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Types of Wine

The different types of wine are named after the wine grapes that are used to make them. Each one bringing a unique flavor, color, mouthfeel, and overall experience. Finding your favorite is fun, but so is trying something new. Here we have the history, description, suggested pairings, and m..... Read More

The different types of wine are named after the wine grapes that are used to make them. Each one bringing a uniqu..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine is not Fermenting

My wine has no fermentation after 72 hours... So you're a wine maker. Maybe you've just received some of our wine making equipment or one of our wine making kits, maybe you're making wine with your own wine ingredients; fruit concentrates or grapes. This time however, there seems to be a problem..... Read More

My wine has no fermentation after 72 hours... So you're a wine maker. Maybe you've just received some of our wine ma..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine Making Troubleshooting

From fermentation issues, to cork problems, to color queries: we want to answer all of your wine making questions. How to Make Wine at Home | Fruit Wine Making | Fruit Wine Recipes | Cooking with Wine Recipes | How to Make Hard Cider and Mead | Types of Wine | Wine Making How To ..... Read More

From fermentation issues, to cork problems, to color queries: we want to answer all of your wine making questions. ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Make Hard Cider & Mead

From apples and honey to the perfect ambrosia. You too can make a delicious beverage from the fruits of Mother Nature's labor. Go ahead and give it a whirl. The next thing you know you'll be entering competitions, winning awards, and walking away with honor and valour. How to Make W..... Read More

From apples and honey to the perfect ambrosia. You too can make a delicious beverage from the fruits of Mother N..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Chocolate and Red Wine Cupcakes

Prep: 20 minutes Cook: 20 mins Yield: 18 servings If cupcakes give you flashbacks of the spongy confections served up at kids’ parties, or sky-high swirls of sickly-sweet frosting…here’s a great way to cleanse your palate. The richness of dark chocolate and sweet, ..... Read More

Prep: 20 minutes Cook: 20 mins Yield: 18 servings If cupcakes give you flashbacks of ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Red Wine Marinated Flank Steak

Prep: 4-8 hours Cook: 15 min Yield: 4 servings Want to secure your rep as a grill god or goddess? Then add this dish to your repertoire. With minimal prep, most of the heavy lifting is done by the wine and herbs. All you need to worry about is a quick sear over the gril..... Read More

Prep: 4-8 hours Cook: 15 min Yield: 4 servings Want to secure your rep as a grill god or g..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Pomodoro Sauce with Wine

Prep: 5 min Bake: 15 min Yield: 4-6 servings Homemade tomato sauce, or gravy as it’s known in some Italian families, is all well and good when you can spend your entire Sunday perfecting it. But here’s a delicious secret Italians have been guarding for centuries Pomodor..... Read More

Prep: 5 min Bake: 15 min Yield: 4-6 servings Homemade tomato sauce, or gravy as it’s known..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Pork Chops and Peach Glaze with Wine

Prep: 20 min Cook: 25 min Yield: 4 servings Peaches and Riesling are a natural partner, and all the better when drizzled over delicious pork chops. Brining makes the chops juicy and tender. The secret to the juciest, most tender pork chops you’ve ever tasted? Treat y..... Read More

Prep: 20 min Cook: 25 min Yield: 4 servings Peaches and Riesling are a natural partner, an..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Slow Braised Lamb Shanks with Wine

Prep: 20 min Cook: 2 ½ hours Yield: 4-8 servings Tough cuts like shanks are transformed into fork-tender lusciousness with long braising, but the secret to good flavor is browning the lamb well before braising it. If you’re tempted to skip or rush that step...don’t! I..... Read More

Prep: 20 min Cook: 2 ½ hours Yield: 4-8 servings Tough cuts like shanks are transformed ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Fruit Wine Making Equipment

The equipment needed to make Wine From Fruit is very similar to the equipment that you need to make Wine From Concentrate, so if you already have that equipment you will need very little else. We provide a complete list of all the equipment you will need to make fruit wine below, but keep in mind..... Read More

The equipment needed to make Wine From Fruit is very similar to the equipment that you need to make Wine From Concent..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How To Make Fruit Wine With Fruit Purees

There are many ways to make wine with the Vintner's Harvest Fruit Purees. It comes down to personal preference. The Vintner's Harvest Fruit Puree one gallon recipe (see chart) calls for one can of puree with enough sugar to bring the original gravity to 1.090 or higher. This produces a wine with ..... Read More

There are many ways to make wine with the Vintner's Harvest Fruit Purees. It comes down to personal preference. The V..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Coq au Vin

Prep: 10 min Cook: 45 min Yield: 6-8 servings Coq au Vin is a brilliant dish that shows how well red wine can work with white meat. If you don’t have the time to slave over an elaborate dish, this shortcut version can be prepared on a weeknight and is delicious serve..... Read More

Prep: 10 min Cook: 45 min Yield: 6-8 servings Coq au Vin is a brilliant dish that shows ho..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Shrimp Scampi Al Fresco with Wine

Prep: 10 min Cook: 22 min Yield: 6-8 servings Quick, simple and elegant, this dish makes a fabulous meal with crusty garlic bread and a salad. As the name indicates, it’s best enjoyed outside. This is my go-to summer twilight dining on the patio recipe. It looks impre..... Read More

Prep: 10 min Cook: 22 min Yield: 6-8 servings Quick, simple and elegant, this dish makes..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Cooking with Wine Recipes

"I love cooking with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food."    --attributed to Julia Child Adding wine to your favorite recipe is a great way to build flavor, but too much or the wrong style wine can throw off an otherwise delicious meal. With a few simple tips you can use an addi..... Read More

"I love cooking with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food."    --attributed to Julia Child Adding win..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Plum Wine Recipe

How to Make Plum Wine If you’re reading this article it’s a safe bet that you’re interested in fruit wine making, more specifically plum wine making. An equally safe bet would seemingly be that I, your illustrious unnamed author, am also interested in making wine from plums. And you would be c..... Read More

How to Make Plum Wine If you’re reading this article it’s a safe bet that you’re interested in fruit wine making, ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Cherry Wine Recipe

From The Joy Of Home Winemaking by: Terry Garey Ingredients for Cherry Wine 3 ¾ quarts of water 2 lbs white sugar 4-5 lbs of fresh or frozen sweet cherries 2 tsp acid blend or juice Zest of two lemons ¼ tsp tannin 1 tsp yeast nutrient 1 campden tablet ½ tsp. Pectic enzyme 1 pac..... Read More

From The Joy Of Home Winemaking by: Terry Garey Ingredients for Cherry Wine 3 ¾ quarts of water 2 lbs whit..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Fruit Wine Recipes

Peaches, pears, melons, berries and many other fruits can be used to create the most delectable fruit wines. Like fruit? There’s no way you won’t enjoy wine made from it. Here’s a collection of fruit wine recipes that are perfectly ‘ripe’ for the making: Cherry Wine Recipe How to Ma..... Read More

Peaches, pears, melons, berries and many other fruits can be used to create the most delectable fruit wines. Like..... Read More

October 25, 2019

What Yeasts Make Fruit Wine

The history of fruit wine may feature fruit, but it has always included yeast. They are the conversion factor that turns sugar into alcohol. Yeast also come in a huge diversity that can yield a nearly endless variety of wine profiles. Some yeasts are super aggressive while some are extremely ..... Read More

The history of fruit wine may feature fruit, but it has always included yeast. They are the conversion factor tha..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How To Use Juice Concentrate To Make Fruit Wine

Although we highly recommend you use fresh fruit or even frozen fruit, it’s possible to make fruit wine with 100% juice frozen concentrate. The legacy of wine, especially fruit wine, has proven that anything with a fermentable sugar can be converted into alcohol. 100% juice concentrates ..... Read More

Although we highly recommend you use fresh fruit or even frozen fruit, it’s possible to make fruit wine with 10..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How To Freeze Fruit For Fruit Wine

Freezing extra fruit after a harvest is a good way to plan ahead and not be wasteful. To start, make sure you have enough space in your freezer. Don’t wash your fruit. Washing will increase the water content within the fruit and make it more vulnerable to freezer burn. Remove any fruit that..... Read More

Freezing extra fruit after a harvest is a good way to plan ahead and not be wasteful. To start, make sure you h..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How To Process Fruit For Fruit Wine

Winemakers have been preparing fruit to create fruit wines throughout history. While a bit more troublesome to process than the average grape wine, fruit wines are still splendid and well worth the effort. Before you begin, make certain you have an area large enough to prepare and proces..... Read More

Winemakers have been preparing fruit to create fruit wines throughout history. While a bit more troublesome to ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Where To Get Fruit For Fruit Wine

Historically speaking, the best fruit for fruit wine is plucked fresh from the field, vine, or tree. Rub the dirt off & get yours from a nearby farmer or grow it in your own backyard. This ensures the fruit you use is in season & well ripened. Plus, you get the added benefit of experi..... Read More

Historically speaking, the best fruit for fruit wine is plucked fresh from the field, vine, or tree. Rub the dirt..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Make Fruit Wine

Fruit wine is wine made with any fruit that doesn’t include grapes. Commonly known as ‘country wines’, they require a little more human attention than grape wines, but are just as delicious. First get your recipe. All fruit wine recipes involve some combination of fruit, sugar, water, and wi..... Read More

Fruit wine is wine made with any fruit that doesn’t include grapes. Commonly known as ‘country wines’, they requi..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Fruit Wine History

Nature has been making wine for thousands of years. The conversion of fruit into alcohol is a process that happens quite organically. All sugar naturally ferments and humans have merely fine tuned the system to suit their preferences, especially when it comes to wine. The grape is not the onl..... Read More

Nature has been making wine for thousands of years. The conversion of fruit into alcohol is a process that happen..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Fruit Wine Making

How to Make Fruit Wine at Home Have you ever wanted to get into home winemaking, but weren't really sure where to start? Have you ever tasted fruit wine and thought, I wish I could make something like that. Well I'm Tim Vandergrift for Master Vintner, and today I'm going to demonstrate..... Read More

How to Make Fruit Wine at Home Have you ever wanted to get into home winemaking, but weren't really sure where..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Make Mead

Mead, or honey wine, is the oldest alcoholic drink known to man. In prehistoric times, honey would drip from bee hives and collect in pools of rain water. Wild yeast would consume the sugar and produce the nectar of the gods. Almost every civilization has lore and myths associated with the consum..... Read More

Mead, or honey wine, is the oldest alcoholic drink known to man. In prehistoric times, honey would drip from bee hive..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Make Hard Cider

Brewing hard cider from nonalcoholic or “sweet” cider is a simple process, and the inebriating end product is as delicious as it is discombobulating. Checklist of ingredients and equipment needed to make hard cider: Hard Cider Making Starter Kit 5 Gallon Carboy (Optional but recommended) Growl..... Read More

Brewing hard cider from nonalcoholic or “sweet” cider is a simple process, and the inebriating end product is as deli..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Small Batch Fruit Wine Equipment

I don't want to invest in expensive equipment, is there anything cheaper to make a small batch of fruit wine? You've got some fruit lying around, but you've never tried to make wine before and you aren't sure if making wine is for you. This is something that we hear all the time at Midwest, and t..... Read More

I don't want to invest in expensive equipment, is there anything cheaper to make a small batch of fruit wine? You've ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

How to Make Wine at Home

How is wine made? Well, people have been making wine at home for millennia, and it is a craft that persists to this day. With some simple equipment, quality Wine Ingredients, and a little patience it's easy to make your own wine at home. In recent years advances in Wine Recipe Kit technology has..... Read More

How is wine made? Well, people have been making wine at home for millennia, and it is a craft that persists to this ..... Read More

October 25, 2019

Wine Making How To

Your source for all things Wine Making; style descriptions, food pairings, recipes, history, Q & A, troubleshooting, and helpful hints. How to Make Wine at Home | Fruit Wine Making | Fruit Wine Recipes | Cooking with Wine Recipes | How to Make Hard Cider and Mead | Wine Making Trouble..... Read More

Your source for all things Wine Making; style descriptions, food pairings, recipes, history, Q & A, troublesh..... Read More