Wineries are the place to be with beautiful weather like this!

Norton grapes are being crushed and the deep dark fragrant juice is fermenting on the skins.  Since the 1800’s, Hermann has been well known for producing some fantastic Norton wines.  And this harvest proves to be one with intense aromas and flavors.

Crushing Norton grapes at Adam Puchta Winery

Crushed Norton grapes falling into the must pump

Crushed Norton grapes up close…

How about a little wine 101? Fermentation is the process by which grape juice turns into alcohol. Here is the simple formula:

Sugar (from grape juice) + Yeast = Alcohol + Carbon Dioxide (CO2)

Basically, the yeasts metabolize (eat) the sugar and produce the good stuff; alcohol and carbon dioxide. The CO2 goes off into the atmosphere. (That’s why the wineries smell so good during harvest!) To produce a big red wine like Norton, the juice ferments with the skins to extract the color pigment from the skins. The tank is pumped over several times a day, to circulate the juice over the top of the grape skins that have floated to the top of the tank.  This allows for maximum extraction of the color from the skins and keeps the fermentation “Happy”. The fermenting must (grape pulp, skins, seeds and juice) are then pressed to separate the wine from the skins and seeds. During fermentation, the alcohol breaks down the pulp so pressing is very easy. The wine is then transferred to tanks to finish fermenting. How about that! That is a very basic explanation of red wine fermentation. Stay tuned, because we are going to follow the life of Norton as it makes its way to the bottle.

Entertainment at the Hermann, MO wineries this weekend:

Adam Puchta – Sat. & San. Music by the Varlet Hearts, 2-5pm.  Bistro serving Tuscan pizzas and more.

Bias – Entertainment each weekend, food and microbrews available

Hermannhof – The “Loehnig Family German Band” will be live at the historic Festhalle, located at First & Gutenberg the first four Saturdays of October.  Solo Richie will be entertaining on the courtyard every Saturday and Sunday in October.  German food available.

OakGlenn – Sat. October 8 • Dick & Jane, 11:30 to 5:30;Sun. October 9 • Michael Rufkahr, 1:00 to 5:00

Robller – Live music first four weekends of October 8 – Ohms Brothers, October 9 Mark Moebeck

Stone Hill – Live German music every weekend through October; Vintage Restaurant serving an Octoberfest menu, all day, every day (Sept. 30 through October).


Come and see us!


Patty, Hermann Wine Trail President


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