Saturday, March 21, 2009

Recommended Levels of Acidity in Wine

When you drink a glass of wine, the acids which are present are what provide the crisp, tart taste. If a wine tastes flat it is because the wine has too little acid present. If your wine has too much acid present it has a sour taste (like a grapefruit). Wine which have what is referred to as proper balance are wines which have the correct level of acidity, alcohol, sugar, etc.).

Dry wines require a lower acidity level then sweet wines because the presence of sugar helps mask the tartness of the acids. Dry white wines should have an acidity level between 0.65% and 0.75% while dry red wines require a slightly lower acid level of 0.60% to 0.70%.

Sweeter white wines generally have an acid level between 0.70% and 0.80% or even slightly higher. Sweet red wines should have acid levels between 0.65 and 0.75% or slightly higher.

Wines made from lighter colored fruits (apples, pears, peaches, etc.) have a recommended acid levels between 0.55% and 0.65% while darker colored fruit wines (plums, raspberries, blackberries, etc.) need to have acid levels between 0.50% and 0.60%.

The percentages expressed are referred to as titratable acidity (or TA) by those making wine and are a percentage of volume.

For those who are wine making at home from wine kits such as the Cellar Craft and WinExpert wine kits that BlueStem Winery sells on our web site there is no need to test for acidity levels as the winemaking kits have been acid balanced when produced.

Our next blog article will provide information on how to measure the acidity present when you are making wine. The BlueStem Winery on-line wine making supply store has the acid testing kit you need.

In addition to keeping an inventory of everything you need for wine making at home our on-line store also has the supplies you need for making homebrew beer. Beer brewing is a great alternative to wine making with your finished product being ready for consumption in about 5 weeks (as oppposed to the much longer period required for aging wine).

1 comment:

Del Carpenter said...

Thanks for your help with acid level, Vern. Marv Heller brought 3 or 4 bushel of pears over this morning and we ground them up in my cider press. I kept 5 gallon of the juice. My little pink "recipe handbook" only gives 2-1/2 t per gallon of wine which actually turns out to be pretty close to the 2-17/32 I calculated to bring my must up from 0.25% to 0.60% (your note recommends 0.55% to 0.65%). Thanks again for your help, Del Carpenter - Cedar Falls