Tasting Wine In Stages and Bottling Blues

As a winemaker evolves, learning how to evaluate their wine during different stages of maturation can be key. The Wine Wizard has some thoughts on what to expect when tasting wines at various young ages as well as kegging homemade wine.

Live Chat with Jef Stebben

Live Chat with Jef Stebben that took place on October 27, 2022.

Live Chat with Clark Smith

Live chat with Clark Smith, which took place September 28, 2022.

Microbial Stability

Chemical and microbial stability measures must be taken after fermentation but prior to bottle aging to protect the wine from contamination and subsequent off-aroma generation caused by microbial metabolism. Learn the most common methods for achieving microbial stability, both during aging in the cellar and at packaging.

Keys to Successful Fermentations

No two fermentations are the same, which means that there is always more to be learned with each one! Give your yeast the best chance for success by creating an ideal environment for a clean fermentation.

Whose Fault Was It?

Phil Plummer was one of the experienced judges at the 2022 WineMaker International Amateur Wine Competition. After three days of judging he found himself repeating similar comments on numerous entry sheets. Now he’s here to explain in greater depth the most common flaws he tasted and the techniques that can be employed to avoid them in your next vintage.

The Fruit of the Vine: Winemaking in Israel

Considered one of the great wine regions back in the days when Phoenicians ruled the Mediterranean Sea, Israel is seeing a big comeback in recent decades. Get the scoop on the burgeoning commercial and hobby scene in this holy land.

Trellising And Choosing Vines: Designing a modern backyard vineyard

Once you have your site selected, soil figured out, as well as irrigation; it’s time to start planning things like row and vine spacing, what type of wine grapes you are going to grow, and then finally what trellis system will best support those vines.

Graceful Garnacha: A grape with many facets

With origins in Spain, Garnacha grapes may now be more commonly associated with the Rhône and Languedoc-Roussillon region of France where it’s known as Grenache. Learn about Garnacha’s background and making the best version of wine with it.

Live Chat Roundtable with Frank and Christina Musto and Frank Renaldi

Live chat with Frank and Christina Musto and Frank Renaldi, which took place August 30, 2022.

Using The Smoke, Campden Tablets, Getting Grape Updates, and Some Pearls of Wiz-dom

With wildfires on the rise in many wine regions around the world, smoke taint has become a common phrase. Learn about it and ways winemakers may be able to try to make the best from affected grapes. Also learn about Campden tablets, getting news on grape growing conditions, and some other pearls of wiz-dom.

Live Chat with Dwayne Bershaw

Live chat with Dwayne Bershaw, which took place July 27, 2022.

Determining Ripeness in Wine Grapes

There is no more critical step in winemaking than picking at the often-fleeting correct moment. Yet ripeness determination is poorly understood and the associated picking logistics are often incompetently executed. If you

2022 WineMaker Magazine Conference Recap

Hundreds of home winemakers gathered in San Luis Obispo, California for WineMaker’s conference, where they took part in educational seminars, hands-on workshops, and shared their passion for wine.

When Grapes Throw You for a Curve

No matter how much you plan, the grapes received at harvest are not always as expected. It’s time to adjust on the fly, and there’s also a plan for that!

Group Winemaking

A group of winemakers create eight wines from the same grapes to explore the impact of each process.

Live Chat with Maureen Macdonald

Live chat with Maureen Macdonald, which took place June 29, 2022.

A Professional Hobby: Making wine in a dry county

When a young hobby winemaker finds out it is illegal to make wine at home in her city and county, she takes the next obvious step: She gets laws changed and starts her own commercial winery.

Classic Catawba: America’s first true wine grape

Some people have called Zinfandel “America’s grape,” others say it should be Concord. Chik Brenneman is here to make the case for the first true North American wine grape variety: Catawba.

Bottling Tips and Wine Judge Etiquette

Bottling is typically the final step towards producing wine where a winemaker can foul things up. Get some recommendations from the Wizard on when and how to bottle your wines. Also get some pointers on proper etiquette of being a wine judge.

Volatile Acidity Basics

It’s a dirty phrase in most winemaking circles, but volatile acidity is found in all wine and having a little can actually add complexity to a wine. Get the scoop on volatile acidity.

Practical Advice For Oak Chips and Volatile Acidity

Q I am using Flextanks and oak chips for my wine and am really liking the results. However, I put the oak chips in loose and they clog up the tubing and

2022 WineMaker International Amateur Competition Results

From April 22-24, 2022, a total of 1,772 different wines were judged at the Mount Snow Grand Summit Lodge in West Dover, Vermont. This year’s competition was again the largest wine competition

Live Chat with Pat Henderson

Live chat with Pat Henderson, which took place May 25, 2022.

Four ‘Cellos

Limoncello is the most popular citrus-flavored liqueur, but they can be made from other citrus fruits as well. Learn to make four citrus liqueurs: Limoncello, limecello, arancello, and mandarincello.