What is Brix? Winemaking Secrets

    If you’ve ever traveled to wine country or glanced at a wine bottle tech sheet then you’ve probably come across the words “Brix” with a number after it, such as 19.5, 23 or sometimes up to 26. Brix measures must levels (sugar) in wine grapes that ultimately determines how much alcohol a wine will have. Learn the secrets to what Brix tells you on a wine stat sheet.

    8 readers - By Madeline Puckette/ Wine Folly

    Harvest 2014: Week 10 – Rounding Up the Stragglers

    Like a duck gliding slowly, wings spread wide, feet reaching for landing on a pond, we are slowly coming to the end of an extremely fast harvest. Last week we saw extreme temperatures. Extreme cold in the mid 40s and extreme heat in the mid 90s. I have seen some vineyards in Calistoga with frost damage at this point and that only reconfirms my belief that the season is coming to a close.

    6 readers - By Nova Cadamatre

      From VINTAGES for Thanksgiving, in wine and with song

      Godello - - 5 readers - Le Clos Jordanne Vineyard Photo: ( Whatever your plans are for Canadian Thanksgiving weekend, I highly recommend they include wine and music. Last year my picks to meet the bird emanated from a Loire state of mind. A new Sancerre makes this year’s shortlist because “you can always use a good Sancerre.

      This Crush Is Almost Done

      notes from the winemaker - - 5 readers - 03 Oct 2014 at 22:34 John Kelly Harvest, Journal, Vineyard, Winemaking, Winery This crush is nearly over for me. In my last post I talked about leaving Westwood and starting something new. Thanks to all who have contacted me expressing support. I assure everyone that leaving Westwood has not been especially traumatic.

      A cultivated tale of two Okanagan wineries

      Godello - - 5 readers - Blue Mountain Vineyards Photo: (c) Some wine is made all in the family. These days I am particularly intrigued by the ancestral homestead turned grape-growing entity. This past summer I paid a visit to Lightfoot & Wolfville Vineyards in Nova Scotia’s Gaspereau Valley.

      A Year in Burgundy [Film Review]

      50 States of Wine - - 4 readers - 'One year with the people who make wine like no-one else in the world' I'm not much of a theater-goer, and, for the most part, most wine-related movies (documentaries) are not being shown in the local multiplex anyway. It's great when I get the opportunity then to see a wine documentary at home. This week, over several evenings, I watched "A Year in Burgundy," a film that follow ...

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    • You Never Forget Your First Crush

      … this adventure some four years ago. We took classes on viticulture and enology at Piedmont Virginia Community College, did lots of research on our own, debated which clones and which rootstocks to order, and finally planted our vineyard in the (very) early spring of 2012. Since then, we’ve invested a lot of sweat, a couple of tears and even a little…

      3 readers - Bob Garsson/ Project Sunlight - A Winemaker's Education
    • Yet another 10 reasons to pour a glass of wine on Halloween

      … will have settled. It won’t be smokeless but it will be extinguished. “A smoke signal, no matter where you are.” Tasted October 2014 @Rosewoodwine Ravenswood Old Vine Zinfandel 2011, Sonoma County, California (673798, $21.95., WineAlign) From 60-80 year-old vines in three different sub-regions of Sonoma and from the how can we thank you enough 2011…

      Michael Godel/ Godello
    • Sonoma peaks from out of the fog

      … Sonoma Coast Photo (c): Sonoma County is so massive a wine region it’s really quite futile to take account of a singular, defining personality. Diversity of wine styles and viticultural approaches are what elucidate Sounty County and its 16 AVA’s (American Viticultural Areas). That much is true but the sheer…

      Michael Godel/ Godello
    • Garagistes for Real - Or, Festival Time!

      …Five years ago, when the crazy idea struck to make a few barrels of wine in our garage, we started this blog to chronicle the process. We called it "Garagistes-in-Traning." The proudest early moment of our inaugural vintage was when a Very Talented and Then-Soon-To-Be-(Now-)Famous winemaker visited the garage, tasted what we'd made, and opined…

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    • How Wine is Made: From Grapes to Glass

      … of winemaking machinery that does exactly what it says, removes the stems from the clusters and lightly crushes the grapes. These Chardonnay grapes are being sorted on a ‘sorting table’ before going into the destemmer and crusher at Donnafugata Winery in Sicily. White grapes being put directly into a crusher where they are separated from the skins…

      1 readers - Wine Folly
    • Wandering through Germany: Part 1 – Pfalz

      … Wachenheimer Gerümpel Riesling (Calcarious) We also had a fantastic discussion regarding the aroma of petrol in Riesling. Jürgen weighed in on this and stated that his opinion was that Petrol showing up within the first 2 years is definitively a fault in the winemaking process that comes from high pressure in the press and a high level of phenolics…

      Nova Cadamatre
    • Are you ready for a Punch Down?

      … (this process is known as “maceration”). Maceration is the winemaking process where the phenolic materials of the grape are leached from the grape skins, seeds and stems into the must. Since 99% of all grape juice (with the exceptions of teinturiers) is clear, the maceration process extracts the color, flavor and tannins. The cap needs to be mixed through…

      2 readers - The Sommelier Update
    • José Maria da Fonseca: Portuguese Pride

      … 390, and met Domingos Soares Franco, the senior winemaker and vice president at José Maria da Fonseca. Domingos is part of the 6th generation of the Soares France family, and three members of the 7th generation are currently involved in the winery too. Domingos was the first Portuguese national to graduate in Fermentation Sciences (Viticulture…

      2 readers - Richard Auffrey/ The Passionate Foodie
    • What is Brix? Winemaking Secrets

      … alcohol level. This technique is called Chaptalization and it’s commonly practiced in cooler climate countries such as France where it’s very hard to ripen grapes properly. For example, before 2011, Bourgogne Blanc (a.k.a. French Chardonnay) allowed a minimum must weight 153 g/L which would only make a wine with 8.5% ABV. Oddly enough, the minimum…

      8 readers - Madeline Puckette/ Wine Folly
    • Wine on company time

      … Algonquin Park, October 2014 From the Middle English octobre and the Latin October, meaning “eight,” just how the month of October became the Julian and Gregorian 10th is a matter of bad juju. The corporate bumbling by way of the insertion of January and February into the Roman calendar screwed up all available etymological kismet. Perhaps…

      Michael Godel/ Godello
    • Fourteen wines that should be on your restaurant list

      … Fish and Chips at Small Town Food Bar I taste a lot of wine. Lots of wine. Were I to manage a restaurant list with room for everything that deserves a place to call home, to share with the world the honest and the natural, a long list I would indeed create. The wine list at Barque Smokehouse I build is predicated on that premise but you can…

      Michael Godel/ Godello
    • Winners at the 2014 Austin County Wine Show

      … operation are to be commended. The Palacios family have been growing vinifera grapes with some success for several years not to far from here in Brenham. I have been the beneficiary, as I made the wine, but Jack should get an award for growing the grapes.” Then, John added an additional note that indicated he was looking for further winemaking…

      3 readers - Vintage Texas Blog
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