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How Dark Should A Concord Grape Wine Be?


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#16 RSG

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    what if I just tweek it once more...

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Posted 24 July 2012 - 01:26 PM


You should give making Concord wine a try. You would think that with all of the vineyards around the Niagra area that grow grapes for Welch's, you should be able to pick some up fairly cheap.


I might just consider that sometime RAR ;)
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#17 Green Zeus

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Posted 02 August 2012 - 07:19 AM

Our concord has a very deep color--about as deep red as a Merlot. We DO use pectic enzyme. Doing a warm ferment,around 80 degrees, will really bring out the color. We get the vats in a small room and use an electric space heater to keep the temp consistant. Pressing also helps the color, but the warm ferment is what REALLY does it.

As a side note, it's very helpful to add some tannin at the primary when doing concord. It helps to stabilize this grape so you don't have a lot of plating out of color on the sides of the bottles.

#18 Truman

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Posted 10 September 2012 - 04:06 PM

Our concord has a very deep color--about as deep red as a Merlot. We DO use pectic enzyme. Doing a warm ferment,around 80 degrees, will really bring out the color. We get the vats in a small room and use an electric space heater to keep the temp consistant. Pressing also helps the color, but the warm ferment is what REALLY does it.

As a side note, it's very helpful to add some tannin at the primary when doing concord. It helps to stabilize this grape so you don't have a lot of plating out of color on the sides of the bottles.


I'm picking my Concord tomorrow and plan to make it without water as you suggest. I would love to end up with a Merlot color wine. I plan on adding peptic enzyme, opti-red, and tannin after crush along with the SO2, nutrients, etc. I will keep it as warm as possible but 80 F. is not possible for me as it will be room temperature.

I will check the s.g., pH, and TA after 24 hours and make adjustments. What is the best method, when, and what is the procedure to adjust the pH? I have calcium carbonate but am not sure how or when to add it.

Thanks for all your help.
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#19 Green Zeus

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Posted 11 September 2012 - 05:35 AM

The way we keep the ferment warm is to get it in a small room and put a space heater in there. Works great without a lot of messing around.

We never check TA on concord. We set the PH at 3.4 On the second day, after the addition of meta and pectic enzyme, that's when we start PH testing. A small amount of calcium carbonate goes a long way. It kind of depends on how much must we have in the vat, but basically you can add 1/4 tsp at a time. Stir it up REALLY well and take another PH reading. Keep doing this until you reach your target PH. But when you get close to the target, trim back how much carbonate you're using so you don't over-shoot the target by too much.

#20 Truman

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Posted 11 September 2012 - 04:41 PM

The way we keep the ferment warm is to get it in a small room and put a space heater in there. Works great without a lot of messing around.

We never check TA on concord. We set the PH at 3.4 On the second day, after the addition of meta and pectic enzyme, that's when we start PH testing. A small amount of calcium carbonate goes a long way. It kind of depends on how much must we have in the vat, but basically you can add 1/4 tsp at a time. Stir it up REALLY well and take another PH reading. Keep doing this until you reach your target PH. But when you get close to the target, trim back how much carbonate you're using so you don't over-shoot the target by too much.


Thanks! That's exactly what I wanted to know. I just finished crushing and I have about about 40 gallons of must with the k-meta added and will add pectin enzyme later tonight. I will check the pH tomorrow and adjust to 3.4 as you suggest. I'm considering adding opti-red and grape tannin or tan-cor. What do you think?
Truman "maker of mountain wine"

#21 Green Zeus

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Posted 12 September 2012 - 06:33 AM

Opti-red can be a good option for you if you don't do the warm ferment. We've tried it in the past and it didn't seem to make much difference for us. But then, we always do the warm ferment.

Absolutely, add some grape tannin. Concords are SO lacking in tannin, even when very ripe. Tannin helps balance the wine and gives some color stability

As a later option, you could oak the secondary--we really like oaked concord. We make a blend of oaked concord with elderberry and blackberry that is fabulous--people think it's some Calif. grape blend because it's so complex tasting!

#22 Truman

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Posted 12 September 2012 - 09:04 AM

Opti-red can be a good option for you if you don't do the warm ferment. We've tried it in the past and it didn't seem to make much difference for us. But then, we always do the warm ferment.

Absolutely, add some grape tannin. Concords are SO lacking in tannin, even when very ripe. Tannin helps balance the wine and gives some color stability

As a later option, you could oak the secondary--we really like oaked concord. We make a blend of oaked concord with elderberry and blackberry that is fabulous--people think it's some Calif. grape blend because it's so complex tasting!



Thanks. I will try some with oak, also.


Truman "maker of mountain wine"




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