Vintage refers to the process of harvesting grapes from their vines when they are perfectly ripe. Winemakers consider the grape’s ripeness, sugar, acid, and tannin levels to determine when they are ready to be picked.
In Australia, Vintage runs for between two to four months, depending on the region and the types of grapes. Temperature plays a significant role in the quality of the harvest - with heat, rain hail, frost and bushfires threatening the quality of the product.
Once the grapes are picked, winemakers transform their fruit into wine.
To be ready for vintage, wineries generally take stock of their equipment, spares and parts to ensure they are ready for the two to four months of hard work.
Global Pumps answer some of your top questions…
Is all your machinery on-hand, ready and serviced?
It’s important you check the state of your equipment. At most wineries, the following machinery is utilised in the wine making process:
- Crusher-destemmers / destemmers-crushers: these are devices that separate the grapes from the stems, with manual or motorized models available depending on the volume of fruit you are processing.
- Wine press: pressing the grapes is one of the most fundamental processes in winemaking. Wine presses exert controlled pressure over the grapes to extract the juice.
- Wine tanks: these tanks are large acid-resistant containers that can be made out of wood, concrete or stainless steel. There are two different varieties, one typically used for mash and the others used for fermentation. Components within these tanks usually include pressure regulators, cooling/heating systems, insultation, an agitator and mash plunger.
- Must and wine pumps: In order to transfer the wine and its by-products, must and wine pumps must be capable of handling thicker substances. They must also be gentle to the wine - as to not damage the product.
Consider organising spare parts and servicing your equipment before vintage to ensure no downtime or waste product.
Do you have the right pump for vintage?
As with all equipment, pumps are a crucial component of the winemaking process. Without reliable pumps, you are unable to transfer the product from one tank to the next.
There are a wide variety of pumps suitable for winemaking, these include:
- Must pumps - mechanical, hydraulic and frequency drive of these pumps allows you to control the speed. Common must pumps are helical rotor pumps and lobe pumps.
- Transferring pumps - as the name suggest these transfer the liquids from one place to another. They are generally lobe pumps, centrifugal pumps, hose pumps or RV series Inoxpa.
Do you have spares available?
Whether your equipment has been serviced or not, Global Pumps suggest having a few parts and spares on hand. Worst case scenario these are kept on hand in future. They provide you with the assurance that if your equipment were to breakdown, you have parts available and ready to be fitted.
Need more advice on your set-up for vintage?
Our teams have been working with wineries throughout Australia, implementing pumping systems of all sizes. Whether you’re looking to optimise your system before vintage, or are after some advice on a new set-up, chat to our Wine Team today!