Small Batch Winemaking Techniques

Making wine in small batches, usually from 3 to 5 liters (3 to 5 quarts), is both easier and at the same time more exacting than making wine in much larger batches. Usually the province of country (non-vinifera) wines, Vitis vinifera grapes may also be made in small batches for the harvest of a single grape vine, the harvest of two young vines, or an experimental batch to devise a method for vinification of a new or unusual base, style or technique. Commercial wineries define small batches differently, and even some home winemakers consider 5 gallons (19 L) as a small batch. For the purpose of this discussion we will adhere to small batches of about a gallon in volume, give or take variations of a liter or so. Why Small Batches Small batches are easy on the pocketbook and can be made almost anywhere, especially if space is limited. Apartment dwellers are often forced by circumstance into making small batches. Kitchens of all sizes make perfect work areas for small batch winemaking, and small jugs can easily be hidden