GRAPES 101

By chris Gerling

Grapes 101 is a series of brief write-ups highlighting the fundamentals that cool climate grape and also wine production.

You are watching: Pounds of grapes per gallon of wine

How plenty of grapes are in a party of wine? It's a question many consumers ask together they gaze at a vineyard outside a winery. It's likewise a concern wineries ask together they survey the tanks and try to calculate manufacturing costs.

As with any kind of question that this nature, there room a the majority of variables come consider. What type of grapes are we talking about? have they swelled up v rain or dehydrated because of sunlight or noble rot? exactly how were castle pressed? to be it gentle, whole-cluster pressing or to be enzymes and press-aids supplied after crushing each and also every berry? Therefore, the variability of products and processes is part of the equation, and also the other component is conversion factors.

What we can learn

Pounds the grapes in a bottle of wine

The number

150 gallons the wine every ton of grapes

Range

120-180 gallons in typical conditions

A standard bottle of alcohol is 750 milliliters (ml), definition a case of 12 bottles has 9 liters, or 2.378 gallons. At 150 gallons every ton, a ton that grapes becomes 150/2.378 gallons per case, or a little an ext than 63 instances of wine. V 12 bottles per case, we have 756 bottles in total.

But how numerous grapes are we talking about? We have the right to go about this two ways. V the numbers us have, we can see that one party is about 1/756 or about 0.12% the a ton. 0.13% x 2000 pounds every ton is near to two and half (2.6) pounds that grapes every bottle. A grapevine could have seven pounds of fruit (or more, or less), so v 2.6 pounds of fruit every bottle, one vine can produce between two and three party of dry wine.

1,600 grams that sugar can increase the volume of wine by one liter, so if 2,000 (7,570 liters) gallons of dry wine is going to be sweetened to 50 grams/ liter of residual sugar (5%), we're adding 50 x 7,570 = 378,500 grams the sugar. 378,500 separated by 1,600 grams per liter equals 236.5 liters, or 62.5 gallons. This number can impress girlfriend or it can not, however the winery now practically has the identical of 26 situations of alcohol (236.5/9 liters per case) to sell that is actually sugar.

What we deserve to learn

How countless grapes room in a bottle of wine

The number

0.2 pounds per cluster of grapes

Range

0.1-0.5 pounds per cluster

Conversely, we deserve to look at swarm weights the grape varieties and see the they selection from 0.2 pounds as much as a pound or more per cluster. Because that example, for Cabernet Franc, a the majority of data native the eastern joined States shows cluster weights about 0.22 pounds/cluster. This means it would take a little much more than 11 swarm (2.6 pounds/ 0.22 pounds per cluster = 11.8 clusters) to fill one bottle. Actually, we won't include the stems and seeds, i m sorry we'll speak to 15% the the swarm weight, so we deserve to bump it as much as 13 clusters.

If we use berry weights the 1.6 grams per berry, i m sorry is about the typical we've seen at harvest in the Veraison to Harvest news the past few years, we can transform again: 28.3 grams/ounce separated by 1.6 g/berry amounts to 17.7 berries every ounce. 2.6 pounds is around 41.6 ounces, and when multiplied by 17.7 berries/ounce we arrive in ~ 736 berries. Berry or clusters that are lot heavier or lighter would change the number significantly, the course. If a cluster of grapes has around 100 berries, we've acquired a little more than seven clusters in the bottle, and given every the variability in this counter one can get away through saying a cluster of grapes amounts to a glass the wine there is no being dubbed a liar.

What we can learn

How to stroked nerves a viticulturist

The number

4 lots of grapes every acre

Range

1-30 tons per acre

An acre, together we know, is the amount of soil tillable by one man and one ox in a day or the size of an American football ar subtracting 10 yards and the finish zones, i.e., a rectangle 90 yards long and 53 yards wide. The difficulty isn't the area, yet all the various things that can be excellent within the area. Aside from the different grapes that can be grown there, the vines have the right to be planted close together or much apart. The training system will pat a large role in the yield, no to mention the floor characteristics and climate. Relying on the details acre, a yield of 4 tons per acre could be far too much or much too little. In Europe, alcohol production numbers are regularly reported as hectoliters every hectare. Neither of these figures is really familiar stateside, yet a hectoliter (hl) is simply 100 liters and a hectare (ha) is a soil measure identical to 10,000 square meters, or around 2.47 acres. A recent farming survey native the european Union detailed a range of 35 to 400 hl/ha. If we convert these numbers to tons/acre utilizing 150 gallons every ton, we acquire a selection of 2.5 come 28.5 tons/acre.

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So over there you have actually it. We've traveled from macro come micro to metric and back. While ns think that most of the numbers I've used are reasonable, there room obviously numerous ways to arrive at very different answers. That is generally ideal to track a given wine indigenous vineyard come bottle, and when the data has actually been crunched for that wine, you have actually some accurate information about that specific wine, period. Currently you have some rapid numbers you have the right to run to kind estimates, however. The gallon to liter counter won't readjust even together the lots per hectares, acres, oxgangs, and also furlongs waver wildly. If all of the conversions are getting out of hand, simply remember that there was enough volume to fill the existing bottle, and in the finish isn't that all that really matters?

Chris Gerling is one enology extension associate at Cornell's new York State agricultural Experiment terminal in Geneva, NY.