Effects of Yeasts and Additives in Winemaking

The act of winemaking requires in-depth knowledge of grapes, processing methods and proper fermentation times. Also, you need to understand how yeasts and other additives affect your batch. They can bring about favourable results in the right amounts or disastrous ones when you add too much or too little of them. Read on for further facts about the effects of using additives and yeasts in winemaking.

The Role That Yeasts Play in Winemaking

Without yeasts, you will wind up with just grape juice since they help the juice ferment and transform into wine. In the fermentation stage, the yeasts help turn the sugar into carbon dioxide and ethyl alcohol. This is not the only effect yeasts have on wine, though, as they also provide aroma, character, mouth-feel and flavour to the batch. On top of all of this, yeasts can influence the colour of the wine. You need to monitor the yeasts closely to prevent spoilage and other negative effects from occurring during fermentation.

Examples of Other Additives and Their Effects on Winemaking

  • Sulfites prevent bacteria growth in the wine and the process of oxidation. Both sweet and white wines contain a high degree of these. While sulfur dioxide naturally forms during the winemaking process, there are times that you may need to boost the amount to obtain the desired outcome.
  • Sugar is necessary for the yeast to perform correctly during the fermentation process. While the grapes contain a certain amount of sugar on their own, at times, it is necessary to add extra sugar. Certain areas of the world have rules against adding cane sugar, though, so check your local regulations before proceeding with this. In place of cane sugar, you can add a grape concentrate that is rich with sugar to reach the same results.
  • Calcium carbonate is a de-acidifier and reduces the acid in the wine when it is too high for the type of wine that you are making at the time.
  • Citric acid is one example of an acidifier that increases the acid in wine.
  • Albumen and milk products are two examples of fining agents to add after the fermentation process to remove unwanted elements.
  • Isinglass and food-grade gelatin are examples of clarifying agents.
  • Tannins help the wine become less astringent when it hits the palate and therefore, softens the mouth-feel of it.

For all your needs for yeasts and additives for your winemaking efforts, turn to our company, Grapeworks Consumables. We carry a wide assortment of these ingredients along with other winemaking supplies and equipment.