Wine country isn’t just for professionals. Thousands of amateurs make great wine at home every year and so can you. Being rooted in the heart of wine country gives us unique access to knowledge and products for home winemaking. We have been at it for over 30 years and we are still in the forefront of the fermentation movement. Today, we are extremely well qualified and fully equipped to help you achieve success in your new hobby. We have designed this website to help you find all the products you need and the information that you want. Wine making is easy and fun. You’ll see!

Our catalog/newsletter will get you started with instructions for beginners, as well as useful articles for experienced winemakers. From beginners kits, to presses and crushers, our whole inventory can be found here.

Our location in Sonoma County has kept us in constant contact with grape growers and winemakers who have shared their expertise with us. Let us bring award winning winemaking to you.

We're here to show you the way. Call us today. 707.544.2520

WINEMAKING ARTICLES

Cleaning and Sanitizing 101 - The Beverage People (PDF, 60 KB)

One of the most important aspects of any fermentation is keeping your equipment sanitary. This article outlines the basic steps and products for keeping it clean.


Winemaking Step by Step - The Beverage People (HTML)

For most beginners, the hardest thing about making wine is simply figuring out, in advance, what equipment is going to be needed. This list should set most of these fears to rest.


Red Winemaking Procedures - The Beverage People (HTML)

This article outlines the essential steps in making red wine, from grapes to glass.


White Winemaking Procedures - The Beverage People (HTML)

This article outlines the essential steps in making white wine, which differ slightly from the above red winemaking procedures.


Barrel Care Procedures - The Beverage People (PDF, 45 KB)

A reference guide for general barrel care including swelling, acidifying, cleaning, as well as short and long term storage.


Cellaring Products Fact Sheet - The Beverage People (PDF, 152 KB)

A concise, comprehensive information sheet that covers oak and oak extract products to help you decide what (or what not) to add when cellaring your wine.


Great Oak Flavor Without A Barrel - The Beverage People (PDF, 69 KB)

There are several ways of adding oak flavor and aroma without using a barrel.


Homemade Oak Flavoring - The Beverage People (PDF, 83 KB)

Homemade oak extract is a sound alternative to barrel storage.


Wine Chem 101 - Bob Peak (PDF, 108 KB)

So why chemistry? Without knowing some of the chemistry of wine, a home winemaker may be flying blind—or at least wearing dark glasses with the lights off.


Kitchen-Table Winemaking Trials - Author: Bob Peak (PDF, 376 KB)

While some rules of thumb and general guidelines can point the winemaker in the right direction, there’s nothing like a trial for really pinning down the best treatment.

After you read this article and feel you are ready to perform your own table trials, click here and print a full size trial placemat.


Drag Strip Or Wine Cellar? - Author: Bob Peak (PDF, 30 KB)

“Burnt rubber” is one of many unpleasant descriptors applied to the volatile reduced sulfur (VRS) compounds than can occur during the fermentation and aging of wine. If you detect this kind of aroma, fix it quick!


Fun With Chemistry: Home Harvest Analysis - Author: Bob Peak (PDF, 47 KB)

For the 2006 harvest, my wife Marty White and I decided to give several home kits and techniques a try. We used the SAP panel from Vinquiry as our reference and ran our own tests to match on our home-grown pinot noir and chardonnay.


The Nutrient Lowdown: SAP and SNAP panels - Author: The Beverage People (PDF, 572 KB)

The SAP and SNAP panels are a way you can test your wine for sugar, nutrients, acidity, and pH. With labratory testing performed by Vinquiry in Winsor, you'll then have the staff of the Beverage People to help with interpretation of your results.


Twins Separated at Birth - Author: Bob Peak (PDF, 48 KB)

Since Syrah does well as both rosé and port, and one seeks to produce less and the other more from the grapes, maybe we could make both from the same lot of grapes. For the 2006 harvest, my wife Marty White and I set out to do just that.


Dr. Frank E. Nococcus and his Wine Monster (Lysozyme to the Rescue!) - Author: Bob Peak (PDF, 128 KB)

Better known among home winemakers as malolactic bacteria, Oenococcus oeni bacteria are mostly a friendly beast. However, there are times that the work of Oenococcus is not welcomed by the winemaker. Eliminating residual Oenococcus may help prevent development of undesirable volatile acids, histamines, and other off aromas or flavors.


Do 100 lbs. of grapes fit in a 5 gallon bucket? - Author: Byron Burch (HTML)

Why is it that it's so hard to remember how many containers are needed for your batch of wine, or how much some odd lot of grapes will yield?


Making Cyser - Author: The Beverage People and Jeff Sternfeld (HTML)

Sonoma County produces a wide range of agricultural products in addition to wine grapes. Apples are especially abundant in the Sebastopol-Forestville area and high quality honeys are produced by local apiaries. Apple juice and honey combine to made a wonderful fermented beverage called Cyser.


Making Fruit Wines At Home - Author: The Beverage People (PDF, 232 KB)

Detailed instructions for making fruit wines.


Gimme Some Skin (Time) - Author: Byron Burch (HTML)

Nowadays, we hear a lot more people talk about "extended maceration" (long skin contact) than we did just a few years ago. This approach has now become widely recognized as a sophisticated "third way" of approaching red wine fermentation.


Varietal Winemaking - Author: Bob Peak (PDF, 352 KB)

This is a companion piece to the basic winemaking guidelines found in our newsletters. Here are modifications and extensions to the procedures you might want to employ to get the very best out of a particular wine variety.


Tired of Bottling? Keg Your Wine! - Author: The Beverage People (PDF, 229 KB)

"Draft wine" is wine that has been kegged and then served from the tap instead of the bottle. There are benefits to choosing draft wine over bottling.


Wine Magnet - Author: The Beverage People (PDF, 221 KB)

Fermentation is what we do. Let us guide you on your winemaking journey.


Simplified SO2 Additions - Author: The Beverage People (PDF, 621 KB)

This chart shows the simple preparation and addition of SO2 solution to your wines.


Making Fine Wine With Wine Enhancement Products - Author: Bob Peak (PDF, 263 KB)

We offer a group of wine enhancement products to help malolactic fermentation, contribute progress in cellaring, and achieve a better finish. Here are specific instructions in their use.


Using Wine Tannins - Author: The Beverage People (PDF, 209 KB)

In 2011 we introduced a new group of professional grade products to our home winemaking customers. Those enzymes, tannins and specialized yeast nutrients have been very popular ever since.


Tannins - Author: Bob Peak (PDF, 81 KB)

The primary role of these enological tannins is not to add anything, but rather to give themselves up as ‘sacrificial tannins’. Added early in the fermentation cycle, these tannins combine with proteins and other grape components and precipitate out into the lees.


Winemaking Articles and Info