What determines and how to check how many degrees are in homemade wine

What determines and how to check how many degrees are in homemade wine

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Various grape varieties are used for the production of wine drinks. The addition of fruits, spices or spices makes the wine bouquet unusual and memorable. The strength of a wine is expressed as a percentage of alcohol. When answering the question, how many degrees the wine contains, how to determine the strength at home, take into account the amount of added sugar, as well as the sugar content and acidity of the raw materials.

Strength of various types of wine

The traditional way of making wine involves the use of a specific grape variety. Often, the strength indicator becomes a criterion when choosing a drink for a home feast.

The calculation of the strength indicator directly depends on the variety and variety of grapes:

  • for the preparation of classic drinks, wine varieties are used. The wine grape is small and sweet and has a seed;
  • the table grape variety is large, without pits, it is suitable for making a table drink without specifying the area of ​​growth of raw materials;
  • for varietal wines, grapes of the same variety are used;
  • non-vintage wines are produced by mixing berries of different yields;
  • blended wines are produced by mixing several grape varieties.

Dining room

The direct purpose of the table drink is drinking at a meal. It is distinguished by the simplicity of the bouquet, the absence of memorable flavors, a certain strength, from 9 percent. For the production of table wine, only table grape varieties are used.

The manufacturer and the geographical location of the collection of raw materials can vary significantly. For example, a French vineyard can supply Argentinean table wine. Table wine can be white or red, it is served at the table during the reception of the second courses of meat, fish or poultry.


The amount of ethyl alcohol in a special wine ranges from 15 to 22 percent. This drink is obtained from an incomplete fermentation process. It differs from the table one in the strength indicator, since due to the high sugar content, this mark tends to increase.

The classic example of a special variety is the Cahors red wine.


Alcohol produced on the basis of grape wine, with the addition of sugar color or herbal extracts, can reach an alcoholic strength of 25 percent or more. Vermouth, which belongs to this type of alcoholic beverage, has a strength of about 40 degrees.


Sparkling wine is prepared using a special champagne technology, which includes several stages. To obtain a special effect, which is inherent in these types of alcoholic beverages, wine and gas are combined in special containers under a set pressure. The strength indicator is on the border between 9 and 13 percent.

Reference! Sparkling drinks are an attribute of celebrating significant events. Bottles with sparkling drinks are sealed with special corks, which, when the bottle is opened, produce a shot effect.


Carbonated alcoholic drinks are often referred to as sparkling. To obtain the desired result, carbon dioxide is artificially injected into the drink under pressure. Carbonated wine has a lower alcohol percentage than sparkling wine. It is on the border between 7 and 12 percent.

Methods for measuring strength

You can measure the strength indicator using special devices. In each case, it will take some time to analyze the result.

Capillary wine meter

A capillary wine tester is a device with which you can find out the strength of dry wine at home. Using the wine meter is quite simple, you must follow a few rules when using:

  • wine is poured into a funnel, filling the container to half;
  • after 2-3 drops are released from the bottom of the flask, the funnel is quickly turned upside down;
  • the base is placed on a flat surface;
  • a certain amount of liquid may pour out of the base, but the main amount will remain in the flask and stop at a certain level;
  • the strength is determined by the mark on the measuring scale.


To measure the alcoholic strength, the drink is poured into a cylindrical hydrometer and immersed in water with the wide side down. The main condition during the procedure is that the temperature of the liquid into which the meter is immersed should not be lower than 20 degrees Celsius.


This device helps to determine the strength by determining the refractive index of a liquid. One drop of the fermented raw material is enough for work. To measure the indicators, a drink is applied to the glass and the angle of refraction is read.

This method is suitable for those who understand the calculations using various coefficients, and have a table of the dependence of the angle of refraction on the percentage of alcohol.

The old way

The old way of determining the strength of a wine is a subjective assessment of the quality of the drink. Traditionally, one of the tasters was trusted to check the alcohol content. Mild intoxication, taking into account the analysis of the taste shades of the proposed drink, was considered a kind of indicator of the strength. This technique had no theoretical basis and could only be based on the individual feelings of the taster.

Analytical method

The analytical method, which allows you to measure the strength at home without using any type of alcohol meter, is based on the simplest mathematical calculations.

To use calculations, you need to have input data and adhere to a calculation plan:

  • 1 percent alcohol is obtained by using 22 grams of sugar per 1 liter of wort;
  • the sugar content of the grape variety determines further indicators of the sugar content of the must;
  • having information about the acidity and sugar content of raw materials, you can calculate the amount of added sugar.

1 percent sugar for the final product will be about 0.6 degrees or percent alcohol.

How to make wine stronger

Grape wine of any strength can be made stronger. For this, special methods are used that qualitatively affect the percentage of ethyl alcohol.

Chemical substances

Chemicals are added to the home drink to increase shelf life. Sulfurous acid, which is most often used at home, performs several functions at the same time:

  • destroys acetic bacteria;
  • discolors wine;
  • protects the liquid from darkening.

Sulfurous acid is represented by 1 gram tablets of potassium pyrosulfite. For every 10 liters of alcohol, add 3 grams of sulfurous acid. This method is suitable for fixing dry wines, the total strength of which before the procedure is from 12 to 14 degrees.

After adding the chemical, the alcohol is thoroughly mixed, filtered, and then poured into containers for further storage.

Increases in alcohol content

Alcohol acts as a preservative capable of fixing any type of wine. Alcohol prevents the formation of vinegar bacteria, prolongs the shelf life and eliminates fermentation.

For each liter of drink add 12 milliliters of alcohol. After adding alcohol, the wine is stirred and then poured into prepared bottles.


Pasteurization is one of the home canning methods. In the case of applying the pasteurization method to alcohol, it is necessary to take into account some peculiarities. Pasteurization is useful for extending the shelf life of homemade wine and killing disease-causing bacteria.

Basic rules for home pasteurization:

  • bottles are placed on the bottom of a wide pan, which should be covered with a special grate or covered with a cloth;
  • it is necessary to leave some distance between the bottles so that the walls of the bottles do not come into contact with each other, otherwise they may burst;
  • boiling only uncorked bottles is permissible, since when heated, water tends to expand and push out excess vapors;
  • after boiling, the bottles must be closed immediately.

Determining the strength of a wine involves the use of proven methods. To accurately measure the percentage of ethyl alcohol in an alcoholic beverage, you need to know which grape variety is used in the preparation of wine, its acidity and sugar content.

Watch the video: Wine making 101: How to store your home made wine (February 2023).