Winemakers Say Chin Chin! – QNS.com

Winemakers Say Chin Chin!

Its a fall tradition that goes back centuries winemaking and every year at this time Europeans look forward to the process of selecting, pressing and fermenting the grapes to perfection.
But according to the wine experts at Queens Garden Nursery, its a tradition thats catching on with a whole new generation.
"Winemaking crosses cultures," said Louie Zuccarello, co-owner. "Right now its growing Americans, Greeks, everyone is interested in the process."
But before we go on, you must remove the "I Love Lucy" episode from your head no longer are the grapes pressed manually (or rather, by foot). In fact, the whole procedure has become quite easy thanks to modern marvels.
The first step after selecting the grapes is pressing. The fruit is placed in a mechanical press, forcing juice out. For those of who who are extremely busy, Queens Garden Nursery also offers grape juice (so one can forego the pressing process).
The juice is then transferred into containers and wine yeast is added. Approximately 24 hours later, fermentation begins.
After about seven days, the fermentation will halt, at which point the liquid should be transferred to another barrel. Once sealed, this secondary container will allow the fermentation process to continue. This will go on for about 60 days, after which the wine is ready for bottling.
According to Zuccarello, adding wine stabilizer or sulfites at this point may preserve the quality of the wines color and flavor.
After all that work and wait, theres no better way to celebrate than by raising a glass of homemade wine.
For more information or to purchase wine making equipment, contact Queens Garden Nursery at (718) 906-9621.
E-mail this reporter at toni@queenscourier.com.

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