Have you ever wondered what the process for making wine is? If you are reading this article, you enjoy exploring the world of wine and perhaps are curious how the wine making process works. More good news, you are still in the right place!
First of all, when we refer to how wine is made step by step, we are referring to natural wine and not artificial wine. We are discussing wine made by grapes cultivated naturally.
“ How wine is made step by step”? It depends on the grapes
If you want to learn every single step of how wine is made you need to read these pieces of information carefully.
To simplify the explanation, we start by listing the most important steps of how wine is made:
- vineyard treatments ( antiparasitic products)
- grape harvest
- pressing grape and fermentation
- must blending
As you can see, there are many steps to follow in the winemaking processes and this is a list of only the most important ones.
The first step to take care of vineyards, after the plants have grown, is the pruning step. We prune our grapes only once a year in January or February, the best periods for doing it.
What pruning is about
Pruning is like taking care of your child. While the grapes are growing up, they need your help to grow healthy and as best as possible. So, pruning consists in naturally modifying the growth of the plant by cutting some branches.
By cutting them the winemaker gives a precise shape to the plants so they can grow without problems.
In fact, pruning allows the vineyard to support a huge weight and a large number of grape clusters.
That’s the reason why pruning is one of the most important steps in the wine making process.
Vineyards can be treated with a large amount of products. Herein lies the big difference between a healthy wine and unhealthy one.
We’re sure you ‘ve heard of pesticides. They are very dangerous not only for the plants but also for your health.
Especially when they are used in a large amounts, they become toxic and, even if we can’t see their effects immediately, over time they will cause many diseases that affect human beings every single day.
Moreover, treating vineyards and plants in general with pesticides cause the plants to lose their organoleptic characteristics. Be aware of unhealthy wine!
Not to worry because there are many safe vine treatments that also protect your health.
Vineyards need antiparasitics to keep the plant healthy, however these antiparasitics exist also in natural form.
When you drink our Papavince wine your health is safe since our vineyards are treated purely and simply with natural antiparasitics that keep away parasites and preserve the fruit characteristics as well as your health.
3.Grape harvest, the funniest step in wine making process
Grape harvest is a sacrosanct tradition in Sicily. When you visit Santa Ninfa, our hometown, in the summer, you will find many young and old men harvesting grapes in spite of the very hot summer temperatures.
It is touching to see two, often three generations all engaged together in harvesting. When we tell you that this is a sacred tradition for Sicilians, that is exactly what we mean.
The grape harvest time largely depends on the grape variety. White grapes are generally harvested in August :
- Muller Turgau variety in the first ten days of August whereas
- Viognier at the end of August.
- Catarratto variety, despite being a white grape, is picked in the second half of September.
With regard to red grapes, instead, they are generally picked in the first ten days of September.
The harvesting time is more or less a fixed rule but it obviously depends on the kind of year and on the climate that affects the ripening times of the grapes.
Papa Vince Wine harvesting is done exclusively by hand, putting grapes inside big crates.
You should know that most winemakers harvest grapes with machines that accelerate the harvest but ruin grapes causing them to become overheated and crushed. As a result, the grapes will begin to ferment early and will lose many of their organoleptic properties.
In stark contrast, Papa Vince grapes are harvested in the cool hours of the day in order to avoid the fermentation process. In this manner, we can be sure that our grapes are fresh and safe and that they will not ferment early.
4. Pressing grape
During the pressing step, the grapes are pressed with a soft closed compress.Grapes are kept at low temperatures, adding dry ice at -80°C/ -112 °F.
Once this step ends, the must is placed in refrigerated tanks at a temperature of 10°C/ 50°F for 24 hours. During this period of time grapes impurities fall down and the clean part is then placed in another refrigerated tank where the grapes ferment. The fermentation period lasts about 15 days.
5. Must blending
After fermentation time the grape must is stirred for about 6 months so that the remaining yeasts release the wine aromas.
Finally, the juice is filtered and then the winemaker can proceed to the bottling phase.
Red wine making process is a little bit more complicated
In the pressing step red grapes are light pressed to gently split the berries.
Once the berries are splitted, they macerate for 8-10 days. During the maceration phase, replacements are made to keep the peel grapes wet. Then, the must grape is separated from the grapes and put in steel tanks.
After it is separated from the peel , the must is put in French durmast barriques for 12,18, or 24 months. Durmast wood is essential for giving wine its particular aromas.
Last but no least, sulphites
In the step-by-step wine making processes, people often ignore the addition of sulfites phase, maybe because they take it for granted, as sulfites are considered necessary for wine preservation.
In Papa Vince Wine very few sulfites are added because the harvested grapes are fresh and therefore do not spoil easily.
Sulphites are mainly needed when the grapes are hot or they have been harvested for many days, causing a rapid fermentation.
In fact, sulfites are added to correct and block the spontaneous fermentation of the fruit. This is the reason why large amounts of grapes which are transported in large trucks before being pressed, immediately require sulfites because the fermentation process begins very quickly and causes the product to spoil.
Papa Vince adds the minimum amount of sulfites required just to ensure the product is safeguarded. The fresher the grapes are, the less time transpires from harvesting to processing and the less sulfites are necessary.
And now, some advantages of drinking wine with no or very few sulfites:
- No headaches - generally caused by large amount of sulfites found in wine
- It’s good for your health - thanks to the organoleptic characteristics of the grape
- It will give you moments of pleasure and relaxation, whether you’re enjoying a glass of wine alone or with friends.
We just have to say 'Salute' and enjoy your wine!