Monday, October 24, 2011

Wine Making

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The art of wine making is thousands of years old; it was around in the time of Jesus, and there have been archeologists that have found clay wine jars dating back to about 1000 B.C. No one really knows when the tradition started, but it has been important to many different cultures like the Romans, Chinese, and even the Turkish people. With an unknown birth, wine making is still a very important part of today’s cultures, and after being around for more than three thousand years many different styles and techniques have developed, so there is no one correct way to make wine. People all over the world make different wines different ways where each wine having its own character and flavor. One of the simplest wines to make is an apple wine; this is a fresh fruit wine. To make this wine there are simple steps that will be give explanation so that any one will be able to make a gallon of this particular type of wine.

The first thing must be done is that the Equipment must be gathered. Two one gallon carboys; this is use for stage of fermentation. Also Airlocks and stoppers will be needed to stop oxygen from getting the wine while fermenting in the carboy. In aid of moving the wine from one carboy to the other carboy a large funnel can be used. Next there will be long handled spoons for mixing; make sure that wooden spoons are not use at all. The wooden spoon is bad for the wine; it will comprise an appalling flavor. Also a Hydrometer will be required to tell how much sugar that is dissolved in the wine; it is the most useful tool in determining when the wine has completed fermenting, but not mandatory. A siphoning assembly is the next tool that will be tool needed; it will be used to bottle the wine. Mainly the siphoning assembly is a pipe and tube used for moving the liquid. After bottling the wine a cork will be needed, and this can be done with a corker. A corker will simply put the cork all the way in the mouth of the bottle, sealing the bottle. Most of these tools can be very difficult to find, and to make it easy there are kits that have all of the tools needed to make the wine. Theses kits maybe found at most wine aeries, or are found on the internet pricing at about thirty-five dollars.

After getting all of the tools that are needed; next the listed ingredients are need

1 1oz. can of frozen apple juice

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1 6 oz. can of frozen lemonade or the juice of two lemons

1 lb. of sugar (two cups) or 1.5 lb. of mild honey

1 gallon of water, boiled and cooled while covered

1 packet of wine yeast (champagne or Montrachet)

½ teaspoon of pectic enzyme (optional)

5 Campden tablets (optional)

These are all of the ingredients that will be needed in the first day of wine making; now on to the procedures. The first procedure is to boil a gallon of water, and add the two cups of sugar or a pound and a half of mild honey. Boiling the water dose two things it makes the sugar or honey more soluble in the water, and also it cleans the water. Cleaning the water is very important; in tap water there are enzymes, and other living organisms that will be bad for the fermentation stages. It can alter the timing of completion and the over all flavor may become bitter. Next the water needs to go into the carboy, but before that is done the carboy must be cleaned. It can be cleaned two different ways, and nether way is better than the other. One is to sterilize with boiling water, and two use an unscented bleach to disinfect the carboy. The reasoning for cleaning the carboy is the same as boiling the one gallon of water.

Step two is to pour the sugar-water into the carboy; this is where the funnel will come in use. Because the carboy has a small opening it is best to use the funnel to get all of the mixture in it. Next, while the sugar-water is still warm the 1 ounces of apple juice and 6 ounces lemon juice will need to be added. The apple and lemon juices are for the flavoring of the wine; without them just ethyl alcohol would be made. After adding the juices it is helpful to stir the mixture. At this time the packet of wine yeast will need to be added. This is what causes the fermentation. Finally, this part is an optional part, the addition of the ½ teaspoon of pectic enzyme or the five campden tablets. The enzyme and the campden are merely just activating agents to help start and speed up and the fermentation process; doing so will cut down on the time needed. Following the addition of the activating agents use the rubber stopper, and let the mixture sit in a warm (60°F-80°F) dark place where it will not be disturbed for one month.

What is fermentation? It can simply be expressed with the chemical formula C6H1O6  CO + CH5OH. But for those that are not that good at chemistry; “fermentation is a chemical reaction that takes place when yeast turns sugar into alcohol.” according to Wine Maker magazine. The yeast that is put into the wine (at that point it is more like sugar water) will brake down the sugar; making 51 to 55% of the sugar into ethyl alcohol, and the remaining 45 to 4% into carbon dioxide gas. It sounds pretty straightforward right? But fermentation is the most important part of making wine. It is the part that can make a wine great or the worse thing anyone has ever tasted.

In one month the wine will go through most of its fermentation, but it is not finished fermenting. At the bottom of the carboy there will be a lot of sediment form the fermentation. To get rid of the sediment the wine can be siphoned in to the second carboy. This is done by putting the carboy with the wine put hirer than the new carboy that is it having the wine transferred to; a table top will work just fine. This is where the siphoning assembly will come in use. Place the part that is the pipe in the carboy with the wine, and make sure that the pipe is not in the sediment; it may be wise to have a friend help hold the pipe while siphoning. Next, suck gently on the tube part drawing the wine through the tube. Try not to get any in the mouth, but it will not be dangerous if some dose; it will just leave a bad flavor in the mouth of the one siphoning. After drawing the wine through the tube cut of the tube by squeezing both sides, and places the tube in the second carboy. Let the wine siphon until some of the sediment is staring to be sucked up then stop; yes some of the wine will be lost but it won’t be much. After siphoning, plug the new carboy with the rubber stopper. Again store in the same conditions as before for another month; the second month will farther continue the fermenting process.

After the second month of fermentation it will necessary to check the amount of alcohol in the wine. This is done by the use of a hydrometer, but if a hydrometer is not present another method is to tap the side of the carboy. When tapping the side if there are bubbles it means the fermentation is complete, and if it doesn’t bubble the wine will need more time. It should be put back in to storage, and checked weekly until bubbles appear. When the wine is finished there are two things that can be done; one to drink it right then, or it can be bottled and stored for three to six more months. The extra time will ripen, and mature the flavor. Bottling the wine is a very simple part, and the final step. For a gallon, about five 750ml bottles will be needed (this type of bottle is the most common). The best method for bottling is to siphon the wine into each bottle; again it would be best if a friend was to help. Put the pipe of the siphoning assembly into the second carboy just about the sediment that is at the bottom, and then slowly suck the wine through the tube. After drawing the wine squeeze both sides of the tube, and place tube in the mouth of the bottle. Fill the bottle; after the first one is full squeeze and repeat with the rest. Next the bottles will need to be corked; that is done with a corker. After bottling store the wine for any given amount of time in any conditions, but a warm room and a longer time is best.

So the next time some friend come over they can be treated to some home made wine. Keep in mind that there are thousands of different wines that can be made, and this was just one of them. The particular hobby of wine making take a lot of time, but is a fun hobby. A hobby that is an art.

Garey, Terry. The Joy of Home Winemaking.

New York Publishers Inc. 15

Chorniak, Jeff. “trouble-free Fermentation.”

Wine Maker Oct.-Nov. 00 +

In To Wine a Division of M Communications

In To Wine How Wine is Made, 16-1, Sept. 0, 00


Steinbart Wholesales Company of Portland, Oregon USA

Equipment needed for using wine kits, copyright 001, Sept. , 00


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