first stepGrape tasting
The quality of the grapes determines the quality of the wine more than any other factor. The quality of the grapes is influenced by the variety, as well as by the time during the growing season, the minerals and acidity of the soil, the time of harvest and the method of pruning.
The harvest is the picking of the grapes and in many respects the first step in the production of wine. The grapes are picked either mechanically or by hand. The decision to harvest grapes is usually taken by the winemaker and informed of the level of sugar (called ° Brix), acid (TA or titratable acidity, expressed in tartaric acid equivalents) and pH of the grapes.
Crushing is the process of gently squeezing the fruit and breaking the skins to begin releasing the fruit contents. The process of removing the grapes from the rickets (the stem that holds the grapes) follows. In traditional and large-scale winemaking, the harvested grapes are sometimes crushed by trampling them barefoot or with the help of cheap crushers.
Low-milk fermentation occurs when lactic acid bacteria metabolize malic acid and produce lactic acid and carbon dioxide. This is done either as a deliberate procedure in which specially bred strains of such bacteria are introduced into the maturing wine, or it can happen accidentally if there are uncultured lactic acid bacteria.
Filtration in winemaking is used to achieve two goals, clarification and microbial stabilization. To clarify, large particles are removed that affect the visual appearance of the wine. In microbial stabilization, the organisms that affect the stability of the wine are removed, which reduces the likelihood of re-fermentation or spoilage.
A final dose of sulfite is added to preserve the wine and prevent unwanted fermentation in the bottle. Wine bottles are then traditionally closed with cork, although alternative wine closures, such as synthetic corks and screw caps, which are less subject to cork contamination, are becoming increasingly popular. The last step is to add a capsule to the top of the bottle, which is then heated to close tightly.