White Wine Making
Anyone who has watched the winemaking process has to believe it is simply magical. In both red and white wine making, the process is pretty much the same. The biggest difference being that in white wine making, you removed the juice from the skins as quickly as possible. There are really only a few steps to the process: the first is to harvest the grapes at just the right time; the next step is the fermentation process; the third step is to clarify and stabilize the wine and the final step is to have patience and let it age.
The first picture below shows the four main steps and the second picture adds in the little steps needed to go from grapes to wine.
Now let’s go through all the steps for white wine making, one at a time so it will make sense to you.
First you need to harvest the grapes (for white wine making you can still use red grapes), plucking only the ones that are ready.
Crush the grapes and remove all the stems.
Place the grapes into a plastic bucket and crush them, discard the leftover stuff (pumice).
At this point you should have clear juice left
Now is the time to add 0.1 gram sulfite powder per liter. It is best to dissolve it in one cup of warm water using plastic or wooden spoon.
Check Brix of juice. It should be around 22 to 24 degrees
If Brix is lower than 21 degrees, add sugar to juice
Check and adjust acid level. Should be about 6.5 to 7.5 g/liter
Check temperature. Should be between 55-65 degrees F
Transfer juice to glass fermenters and fill only 2/3 full. Attach a fermentation lock.
Leave it sit for 24 hours but make sure temperature stays below 60 F.
Add 1 gram yeast pellets dissolved in 1 cup warm water for every 3.8 liters of juice. Let yeast solution sit for 10 minutes before adding to fermenter. Attach fermentation lock.
During fermentation check Brix and temp twice a day
Wait for Brix to reach 0
Siphon the sediment off and rack
Add sulfite with a fermentation lock
Rack every 3-6 weeks when sediment settles
Add fining materials
Rack and add sulfite
Let it age
Bottle it with getting no air in
So now that you have delved into white wine making, let it age long enough for you to enjoy the full flavor.