2020 Winemaker Magazine Conference Substitute

As many of you know, Winemaker Magazine (WMM) is a great source of information and techniques for the serious home winemaker. This weekend many of us planned to attend the annual WMM Conference that was to be held in San Luis Obispo amid one of our favorite wine regions, the California Central Coast. In the interest of public health and safety, the meeting has been postponed. As of this writing, it is to be held next year May 20-23 in the same location. So we’re looking forward to that!

Discount codes!
The Vinmetrica Team would have been at the WMM Conference to share information about our products and to learn more about your needs. We can’t all meet this year, but we can provide the same discount codes for a brief time as we do every year at the conference!

If you order anything on-line from Vinmetrica before midnight on Sunday, you can take 15% off your entire order by entering this discount code Keep Reading More!

An Overview: Test Kits for Residual Sugar (RS) and Alcohol Levels (%ABV)

ABV reaction bottle
ABV Reaction Bottle
On the quest to fashion the best wines, we make multiple measurements to ensure that our wine ferments and ages properly.  We know that it’s important to keep our SO2 levels up; knowing the pH and acidity of the wines is essential to SO2 management as well as proper stability and flavor.  If we’re doing malolactic fermentation, we need to measure malic acid to know when that step is complete.

At some point prior to bottling, you’ll likely want to know the levels of residual sugar (RS), as this will impact your preparation for bottling. If you’re selling your wine, you need to measure your wine’s alcohol by volume (ABV); and even if it’s for your own use, it’s good to know the alcohol level, if for no other reason than to be able to prove you are on top of your process from vineyard to bottle.  In the last few years, Vinmetrica has released two new kits for assessing these post-fermentation parameters.  The Residual Reducing Sugar test and the Vinmetrica ABV kit are accurate and simple procedures for home winemakers and small wineries. Keep Reading More!

Vinmetrica – A Brief History

Rich making wine in his garage
By now you know that Vinmetrica has the reputation for providing simple, low cost, fast and accurate tests for winemakers…tools that let you make the best wine you can. In this installment of the winemaker’s blog, we’d like to give a brief account of our origins. Keep Reading More!

Malolactic Fermentation Tips and Tricks

Tired of Paper chromatography? Free yourself with the upcoming Malic Acid Tester from Vinmetrica.
I’m sure many of you are familiar with the technique of malolactic fermentation (MLF), typically carried out in most red wines and in some white varietals.  MLF plays an important role in the finished wine’s feel and taste. MLF reduces titratable acidity, increases pH, and produces flavors often characterized as “soft” or “buttery”.  In addition, carrying out MLF before bottling prevents an unintended development of carbon dioxide gas (CO2) due to MLF starting up in the bottle, which can lead to fizzy wine, or worse, exploding bottles! Keep Reading More!

The Benefits of Barrel Steaming

As many of you know, Vinmetrica shares a warehouse space with our sister company Little Oaks Winery. After years of private winemaking, our president Rich decided it was time to turn his garage operation into a business. We have grown from a one barrel, garage operation to a small winery producing about 350 cases a year.

Our winery has anywhere between 18-24 barrels at once and we were looking for a more efficient and cost effective way to clean our barrels and tanks after bottling. We followed all the usual methods and found that we were either using up too much water, potentially adding odd flavors to our barrels from the use of harsh chemicals, and we weren’t exactly sure if our barrels were getting clean. It dawned on us that we needed to find a better solution, and fast. We eventually determined that barrel steaming was the best way to go.

So what are the benefits of barrel steaming? Keep Reading More!

2017 WineMaker Magazine Conference & Kickstarter

Vinmetrica at the Winemaker Magazine’s annual conference. June 1-3 2017, Ithaca, New York.

Vinmetrica was at the Winemaker Magazine Conference, held at the Statler Hotel on the Cornell University campus, amid the beautiful Finger Lakes Region of upstate New York. Every year the conference hosts hundreds of wine and cider enthusiasts who are passionate about their craft. As always there were numerous presentations and workshops on vineyard practices, wine making, and of course, quality management Keep Reading More!

The Vinmetrica Dissolved Oxygen System

Introducing one of Vinmetrica’s newest products:  the Dissolved Oxygen  (DO) Probe, a tool for fast and accurate measurement of dissolved oxygen in your wine. Why measure DO in your wine? Oxygen plays a major role in winemaking, having both good and negative effects on the final product. Dissolved oxygen is helpful in small amounts, but too much could lead to an undesirable bottle of wine. By just taking a few measurements you can quickly take control of that. Keep Reading More!

The Wine Analyst

My career has been one of analysis. Yes, I’m one of those analytical types who dissects much of his daily experience into subjects for further investigation. Never could really get the hang of politics, religion or film criticism, but I do take an almost indecent interest in the technical workings of things. That curiosity led me into a career as a Ph.D. analytical chemist – and ultimately, into wine analysis, and making products for that endeavor.

As a 20-year veteran amateur winemaker, I knew there were better ways for home winemakers (and small wineries) to get the basic chemistry information they need for their craft. High on the “annoyance list was sulfite analysis. From desperately slogging my way through color test strips and unreliable Ripper set-ups, both commercial and homemade, I was motivated to find a better way to get that information. Keep Reading More!

What is residual sugar and why is it important?

Do you want to take your winemaking to the next level? We hope you already measure important parameters like free SO2 (sulfites), pH, titratable acidity and malic acid, but residual sugar has always been tricky, expensive, and/or subjective when trying to get a quantitative answer. Now Vinmetrica introduces its NEW Residual Sugar reagent kit.  Using the pH meter you already have, you can now get accurate and reliable residual sugar data. Keep Reading More!

Comparative analysis of Malic Acid testing methods

Do you wait for the completion of Malolactic fermentation before adding sulfite to your wine? This reduces the overall acidity of your wine, leading to a smooth, softer mouth feel and a pleasant complexity in nose and taste. If malic acid levels are not reduced below around 0.1 g/L, there is significant risk that fermentation will start up again in the bottle, popping corks and/or making that beautiful red you so lovingly put up in your cellar turn fizzy! So it’s important to have accurate information on your malic acid levels. Keep Reading More!