Fixing Winemaking Mistakes Is The Fun Of It

The "Wine Pod People" (just looking at that phrase gives you the willies, doesn’t it) got some GREAT publicity today when the San Francisco Chronicle published a fine story about their unique home winemaking system: The Wine Pod. We caught wind of the Wine Pod back in February and were very taken with the idea of having such a compact, integrated system for making wine in our home. (I’m still working on the wife..she hasn’t relented…yet.)

The anecdotal evidence that Americans are finally adopting wine as a more common beverage is building. We see wine showing up far more often in Pop Culture, which is a sure sign that a kind of movement is happening whereby we as a people are more comfortable putting bottles of wine on our tables.

This bodes well for the the people who make the Wine Pod,    ProVina. For $2000 one can invest in what would surely become a very serious and sumptuous hobby.

Tina Caputo, also the editor of Wines & Vines Magazine, wrote the story for the SF Chron. In the story Caputo talks with Winemaker Kris Curren of Curren Wines who points out that making wine in such small batches as the Wine Pod allows means you are likely to have a greater chance of making flawed wine: "The smaller the container of wine you make, the greater the ability to
screw it up. I’m a professional winemaker, and if I tried to make a 5-gallon jug of wine, I would have a much greater propensity for having that wine be flawed."

She’s got a good point. However, isn’t this really the fun of the Wine Pod?   Being able to experiment with different grapes, different winemaking methods, working at getting your five gallons of wine just right? If this weren’t the fun of it, then why would you buy the damn thing?

6 Responses

  1. Mike Duffy - April 28, 2006

    We learn more from failure than from success.

  2. JohnLopresti - April 29, 2006

    If what Mike says is the guidepost, I have a few vintages of commercial wineries to suggest. Where is that green Hungarian festival held these days…Pillsbury may have an offshore sponsor. Then there was Topolos listening to the viticulture advisor, ‘Who buys merlot, no one, so what if it is Region-I; how about a Beaune clone of…’ And before making a late harvest zin now on sale as a $45./bottle Napa port, a certain local winemaker early in his career was chastized by management for sneaking into the cellar at 4:00 a.m. to write the transfer order personally so bottling would have a famous establishment’s centennial zin corked at the perfect moment; well, the whole embarrassing experience doubtless got him thinking about starting his own label; excellent idea, both then and now. Now, the self-contained vinification apparatus seems turn key; if we see someone in a Lexus SUV parked around harvest in the unpicked block of grapes, instead of acosting them with an air of opprobrium we might ask if they have a WinePod and, please, might we meet at her place when the batch is corked, bottled, and well aged.
    The bottling is the hitch, obviously; and readouts of sensors should help. Getting the glucometer data into Excel should help. This is doable. We will improve with every harvest. Easy on the citric add, there.

  3. CHUCK RHODES - February 7, 2009


  4. Doug - May 31, 2009

    I have fermented 60 gallons of grapes in my Winepod (you don’t even know the spelling} and you are wrong… the wine is amazing… It is the most superior product I have purchased in 20 years and it is a crying shame they were under capitalized… Greg Snell is a visionary and amazing inventor… so sad to see them go.

  5. Suzy - January 8, 2010

    Have my own problem, was making 5 gallons of cranberry wine from crushed cranberries and never fermented. Gravity level never dropped. Now have 5 gallons of craberry JUICE. Can this be fixed. (house was too cold for process?)It is winter and was fluxuating from 70 degrees to 50 degrees. Can it be put in 70 degrees and more yeast added to regenerate? Please help

  6. Michel - November 2, 2010

    Nothing you can do!!
    Drain cleaner. The sorbate will keep the yeast from budding.

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