Skip to content
Make Wine Lab

From Vine to Bottle: The Fascinating Process of Making Wine From Concord Grapes

wine from concord grapes

Welcome to From Vine to Bottle: The Fascinating Process of Making Wine from Concord Grapes. If you're a wine lover and enjoy the unique taste of Concord grape wine, you'll be delighted to learn about the intricate process involved in making it. From harvesting the grapes to fermenting them into wine, and finally aging it to perfection, this article will take you on a journey through the entire process. You'll also discover interesting facts about Concord grape wine and how it differs from other types of wine. So, grab a glass of your favorite wine, sit back, and let's delve into the fascinating world of Concord grape wine.

Harvesting the Grapes

Gathering the grapes is a crucial initial step in crafting Concord grape wine. It is imperative to select them at the optimal period, when they are ripe and have reached their peak flavor. Harvesting can be accomplished by hand or machine, depending on the vineyard's size. Ensuring that the grapes are not bruised or split during gathering is essential, as this can impact the quality of the wine. After harvesting, the grapes are transported to the winery for processing.

It is essential to remember that the quality of the wine depends on the quality of the grapes. Before harvesting, they must be thoroughly inspected to ensure that they are free from illness or decay. Additionally, harvesting at the appropriate time is necessary to ensure that they have the perfect balance of sweetness and acidity. The gathering process is a crucial element in making Concord grape wine, and requires expertise and familiarity to do correctly.

Crushing the Grapes

Gently removing the stems, the next crucial stage of winemaking is crushing the grapes. This action enables the juice to be extracted, which is then poured into a fermentation vessel. Here, yeast is added to begin the fermentation process. To ensure the wine isn't overly tannic, the grapes should be squeezed carefully, rather than harshly compressed. Some winemakers opt to do this manually, while others use a mechanical crusher. The aim is to get as much juice as possible without extracting unwanted tannins.

Once the juice is in the fermentation vessel and yeast has been added, the fermentation process begins. Depending on the type of wine, this can take anywhere from days to weeks. During this time, the yeast transforms the sugar into alcohol, while simultaneously developing the wine's flavor and aroma. It is essential to monitor the fermentation process attentively, checking temperatures, sugar levels, and periodically tasting the wine. When the fermentation process is complete, the wine is prepared to be aged and bottled.

Fermenting the Grapes into Wine

Turning grapes into wine is an essential part of winemaking. After crushing the fruit, the juice is poured into a fermentation vessel, where yeast is added to initiate the process. This transformation of grape juice into an alcoholic beverage is made possible by yeast consuming the sugar and producing alcohol and carbon dioxide as a result. Depending on the alcoholic content and flavour profile desired, the fermentation could take few days to weeks. For wine from Concord grapes, it is recommended to keep the container cool to retain the fruity and floral flavours.

Once fermentation has concluded, it is time to rack the wine. This involves transferring the liquid away from the sediment at the bottom of the vessel, helping to clarify the beverage and eliminate undesirable tastes and smells. The wine is then moved to a new container and aged for at least 6 months, allowing the flavours to mature and a secondary fermentation to take place. When the wine has reached its desired flavour and aroma, it is filtered and bottled. Wine from Concord grapes can either be aged or enjoyed immediately, and the hard work of making the perfect bottle is worth the effort.

Aging the Wine

Aging is a pivotal step in the winemaking of Concord grape wine. After fermentation is finished, the beverage is moved to either barrels or containers for maturing. This transformation period develops the wine's special flavors and fragrances. The sort of barrel or bottle used for maturing can also influence the taste of the wine. Oak barrels are generally employed for aging red wines as they provide a woody and spicy taste, while stainless steel or neutral barrels are preferred for white wines to save their fruity and floral notes. The length of time the wine is aged fluctuates with the winemaker's preference, though red wines are typically aged for a longer duration than whites. The aging process can range from a few months to multiple years, and throughout this time, the wine is inspected regularly to guarantee its development is progressing properly.

During the aging process, the wine goes through a chain of chemical reactions which modify its flavor and scent. The tannins in the wine become milder, thus making it more pleasant, while the acidity decreases, making the wine less tart. The flavors become more intricate and multi-layered, with hints of oak, fruit, and spice. The aroma also changes, becoming more prominent and refined. Aging the wine allows it to reach its greatest potential and transform into an exquisite and flavorful beverage. After the aging process is complete, the wine is sealed and ready to consume. The outcome is a token of the winemaker's skill and patience, as well as the distinctive characteristics of the Concord grape.

Planting the Vines

Soaking and planting the vines are essential components of crafting Concord grape wine. Prior to planting, it is imperative to submerge the vines in water, allowing them to become hydrated. After, any broken or weak roots must be cut away to ensure healthy growth. When planting, one should direct the roots downward and disperse them, ensuring the plants have a secure base. It is advisable to space each vine at least eight feet apart for adequate room for expansion and maturation.

Good planting techniques are vital for a bountiful grape harvest. To make Concord grape wine, one requires specific ingredients; including sugar, yeast nutrient, pectic enzyme, grape tannin, and Campden tablets. After soaking and planting, it is prudent to pause for 24 hours before introducing wine yeast to the mixture. This recipe is specially designed for Concord grape wine, which has a unique foxy flavor. Another popular homemade recipe for sweet Concord grape wine incorporates water, sugar, Concord grapes, Campden tablet, yeast nutrient, lemon juice, and wine yeast. By applying the correct planting techniques and a delicious recipe, one can easily make Concord grape wine from home.

Recipe for Concord Grape Wine

Developing a great recipe for Concord grape wine is critical for success. All the necessary components must be present, such as sugar, yeast nutrient, pectic enzyme, grape tannin, and Campden tablets, in addition to the grapes. Waiting 24 hours after adding the Campden tablets before introducing the wine yeast is essential to ensure sulfites dissipate. Following the recipe carefully will lead to a successful fermentation process and a tasty final product.

Producing a homemade sweet Concord grape wine includes considering the unique foxy note of the grapes. Obtaining the perfect balance of sweetness and acidity involves using the correct amounts of sugar and lemon juice. Additionally, water, yeast nutrient, and wine yeast should be included in the recipe. With patience and attention to the details, crafting a delicious and special homemade Concord grape wine is achievable.

Unique Flavor and Characteristics of Concord Grape Wine

Concord grape vino stands out for its one-of-a-kind flavor and personality. Its deep, dark purple hue is a testament to the high amount of antioxidants found in these grapes. The wine has a sweet taste, complemented by a slightly tart aftertaste. It also carries a unique aroma of grape jelly and a slight musky earthiness. The singular flavor and scent of Concord grape wine make it beloved by both connoisseurs and casual tipplers.

A defining feature of Concord grape wine is its foxy note. This refers to the distinctive musky taste and fragrance that the wine gives off. This is due to the high presence of a compound called methyl anthranilate, which is found in Concord grapes. While some drinkers may not be keen on the foxy note, other folks appreciate its contribution to the flavor profile.

Another aspect that sets Concord grape wine apart is its natural sweetness. Concord grapes are rich in sugar, thus their vino tends to be sweeter than other varieties. To balance this, acid can be added during winemaking, though many just enjoy the sweetness as is.

The aging process of Concord grape wine is also special. Unlike other wines that may benefit from aging in oak barrels, Concord grape wine is typically left to mature in stainless steel tanks or glass bottles. This is because it already contains high levels of tannins, which are responsible for red wine's dry sensation. Aging it in oak barrels will only serve to increase the tannins, making it too astringent.

How Concord Grape Wine is Different than Other Types of Wine

Distinguishing itself from other wines, the distinctive flavor of Concord grape wine is something special. This foxy note is derived from the dark purple grape skin, which contains high tannin levels. These tannins give the wine a rounded, full-bodied taste that lingers on the palate.

Not only does the flavor of Concord grape wine set it apart, but its production process does too. Unlike other wines that use one grape variety, this wine is a blend of multiple grape varieties. This combination gives Concord grape wine an intricate flavor that is difficult to replicate. Furthermore, this wine is generally crafted in small batches, allowing vintners to carefully control the fermentation process and create a unique product.

In addition, Concord grape wine has little need for additives. Many wines require sulfur dioxide or other chemicals to stop spoilage, but this type does not. This allows the natural components of the grapes to take center stage, creating a healthy and delicious wine. To further enhance the flavor, natural additives such as lemon juice and yeast nutrient are used, but not enough to mask the wine's character.

Finally, Concord grape wine is meant to be enjoyed chilled. This makes it perfect for hot days, when a cool glass of it is just what one needs. Its light, fruity taste also pairs well with a variety of dishes, from rich desserts to spicy Thai food. Whether by itself or with a meal, Concord grape wine is an exquisite and unique beverage that any wine connoisseur would appreciate.

I made a concord grape wine recipe 1 gallon and the taste was awesome. This year we will prepare 5 gallon concord grape wine recipe for the family to share in Xmas.

Matt Craig (UK)


In conclusion, the process of making Concord grape wine is truly a labor of love. From harvesting the grapes to aging the wine, every step requires patience, skill, and attention to detail. However, the end result is a delicious and unique wine that is perfect for any occasion. Whether you want to try your hand at making your own wine using one of the many wine recipes with Concord grapes, or simply enjoy a glass of this distinctive wine, you are sure to appreciate the hard work and dedication that goes into each and every bottle. So raise a glass and toast to the grape, the vine, and the art of winemaking!

From Vine to Bottle: The Fascinating Process of Making Wine From Concord Grapes
Article Name
From Vine to Bottle: The Fascinating Process of Making Wine From Concord Grapes
The Process of Making Wine From Concord Grapes is truly a labor of love. From harvesting the grapes to aging the wine, every step requires patience, skill, and attention to detail.
Publisher Name
Publisher Logo