Why is the acid content of your wine so important? When it comes to wine making, wine acidity is crucial to creating that first taste you experience when the wine comes in contact with your tongue. Having the right amount of acid in a particular wine is what gives wines their refreshing, crisp flavors, and allows different wines to pair well with certain foods! As a wine maker, you’ll want to understand proper acidity levels for the wines you make, so that you are able to adjust the levels properly and create the best flavor for your home brew.
Why different wines need acid:
In general, white wines will have a higher acidity level than red wines. Dry wines, such as Sauvignon Blanc, need adequate amounts of acid in order to give the wine balance and liveliness (crispness). Too much acid, and the wine becomes a bitter experiment that few will enjoy. Sweeter wines, like Port, need acid so that the sweetness isn’t overpowering to the point where the wine becomes dull.
Many wine makers abide by the following guideline for acidity. Keep in mind that this all comes down to personal taste! Some like their wine with more acid, and some with less. If you are brewing for the first time, however, this is a good baseline to go off of.
- Dry White Wine—0.65 % – 0.75 %
- Sweet White Wine—0.70 % – 0.85 %
- Dry Red Wine—0.60 % – 0.70 %
- Sweet Red Wine—0.65 % – 0.80 %
How can you test wine acidity?
Our acidity products offer several ways for you to check the acid levels of your wine.
-The quickest and easiest way is with a digital pH meter:
-You can also get a titratable acidity test kit:
What should you do if you need to adjust the acid levels of your wine?
To increase acid levels, most wines will benefit from an acid blend (containing tartaric, malic & citric acids). You can add 1 teaspoon to raise the acid by .15% in ONE gallon. (1 tsp = 4.5 gms.)
To decrease acid levels, you can use calcium carbonate. (1 3/4 teaspoon) of calcium carbonate per gallon reduces acidity by 0.2%. It’s important to note that reducing the acidity by more than 0.4% can affect the flavor and stability of the wine!
Got other questions about wine acidity? Call or email us and we’ll be happy to help!