Ozone – The New Industry Standard for Wine Barrel Care

Why Ozone your wine barrel?

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As a winemaker you know that sanitization is a key factor in successful winemaking. The cleaner your cellar and winemaking practices, the better the wine. Ozone can help keep your wine barrel in the cleanest state that science will allow. Winemakers battle with high energy costs due to cleaning, hot water not fully blasting away harmful microbes, and the consistent cost of purchasing new oak barrels. Using Ozone will help retain oak character within your used  barrels and extend their life in the cellar. Ozone treatments, paired with solid winemaking practices, will help create a consistent and microbe-resistant oak barrel – one that’s only infusions will be adding delicious oak characteristics and soft micro-oxidative qualities to your wines.

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Ozone Facts:

  • Ozone is a stand-alone organic sanitizer which simplifies sanitation, is safe to use, saves water and energy, and is environmentally friendly.
  • Ozone is produced as needed on site, dissipates after use and minimizes the purchase, storage, mixing and disposal of chemicals.
  • Ozone is a cold sanitizer which saves energy and extends barrel flavors
  • Ozone kills a much broader spectrum bacteria, fungus and molds, yeasts, spores and cysts Organisms Killed by Ozone from 10 to 5000 times faster than halogenated chemicals (chorine, iodine, etc.).
  • Ozone was approved by a FDA Expert Panel as GRAS (generally recognized as safe) for use as a sanitizer in 1997 and was approved by FDA for use with fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, etc. in June 2001 (food additive petition).
  • Ozone was approved under USDA Organic Rule in 2000.
  • Ozone reverts to molecular oxygen, leaving no by-products or residual contaminants.
  • Ozone unlike halogenated chemicals (i.e. chlorine, iodine, etc.) ozone does not generate TCA precursors or dangerous halogenated hydrocarbon byproducts, such as THM’s.
  • Ozone destroys objectionable taste and odor causing compounds.
  • Ozone is pH neutral, (does not change the acid/alkaline balance).

Musto Wine Grape Company, LLC. uses ozone protocols to eliminate and prevent the return of microbial spoilage organisms (i.e. Brettanomyces, Acetobacter, malolactic and lactobacillus, etc.) in barrels. No rinsing after the sanitation is required which reduces sanitation times and water usage.

We use gaseous ozone to maintain barrel and wooden upright health during storage eliminating the use of sulfur and sulfur dioxide. Every used barrel that is delivered to MWG is ozoned before it reaches any perspective customers.

Ozone has become a single source organic sanitizer at Musto Wine Grape Company, LLC.. Its use allows us to produce a better product through the control of spoilage organisms, mold, and mildew in our used barrels for our customers. We hope you attend our upcoming Barrel Care Class and see how Ozone (in addition to other barrel care and maintenance techniques) can help you maintain and increase your wine’s quality. All class attendees will be able to bring in their own barrel and we will treat it with ozone after the class at no charge.


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FREE Barrel Care Class – March 9th at 10:00AM

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Join us Saturday March 9th at 10:00AM for our FREE Barrel Care Class taught by our resident equipment expert Patrick Milio. Patrick will go over Barrel Care, Barrel Maintenance, and Barrel Aging.

Also, if you bring your barrel to class we will Ozone it for FREE (limit 1 barrel per person)!

We look forward to seeing you in class.

Please RSVP to cmusto@juicegrape.com to secure your spot in class.

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Why Ozone your barrel?

Ozone makes your barrel the cleanest state that science will allow.

Using Ozone will also help retain oak character within the barrels and make them easier to swell.


New Port Wine Barrels

We have added another used barrel type to our curated oak and barrel program.

Port Wine Barrels

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Our Port Wine Barrels housed Tawny Port from the Duoro Valley in Portugal. These barrels were full for a minimum of 10 years. After they were dumped, they were sent back to the Cooperage where they went through a light re-cooping process. The heads were sanded and re-stamped or replaced, and the rings were either replaced or refurbished.

The barrels have a lovely nutty, red wine smell to them and are still wet from the port!

A great addition to any adventurous winemaker’s cellar.

These barrels are NOT available online. Please call 877.812.1137 to reserve your barrel.

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2019 Winemaking Class Schedule

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Start the year off right with Winemaking Classes! Learn new tricks and tips, or start your first batch.

Musto Wine Grape has a winemaking class for everyone!

Free Winemaking Classes:

  • Fining Agents – Saturday February 16th at 10:00AM

  • Barrel Care – Saturday March 9th at 10:00AM (UPDATED DAY/TIME)

  • Working with South African Wine Grapes & Juices – TBD (UPDATED DAY/TIME)

  • Oak Alternatives – Saturday April 6th at 10:00AM

  • Working with Chilean Wine Grapes & Juices – Saturday April 20th at 10:00AM

  • SO2 Management – Saturday May 4th at 10:00AM

  • Working with Hybrid Grapes in the Winery – Saturday June 1st at 10:00AM 

  • Sensory Evaluation – Saturday June 8th at 10:00AM 

  • New England Viticulture –  Saturday July 6th at 10:00AM 

  • Fermentation Tips & Planning – Saturday August 3rd at 10:00AM

  • Making Wine from Juice – Saturday August 24th at 10:00AM

Winemaker Bootcamp Classes:

  • South African Bootcamp – Starts Saturday March 30th at 9:00AM

  • Chilean Bootcamp – Starts Saturday May 25th at 9:00AM

Winemaking 101:

  • Spring classes: TBD

Winemaking 201:

  • Spring classes: TBD

Daniel Pambianchi Seminar:

  • Fall of 2019: Date TBD

Our Wine Grape Growers are Invading Connecticut

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Hello Winemakers,

We hope 2019 is treating you well. We are excited to announce that several of our Wine Grape Growers will be in Connecticut for our Annual Winemaker Dinner on Saturday February 23rd. The dinner is open to anyone who would like to attend. Our wine grape growers from Suisun Valley, Lodi, Central Valley, Paso Robles, and Washington State will all be in attendance. We will be handing out medals and awards to those who entered our wine competition followed by a special guest speaker. There will be raffle prizes, a delicious dinner, wine tasting, an open bar, and dancing. It’s always a lot of fun.

Regardless of if you entered your wines in our competition, you can still purchase a ticket, hand out with your fellow home winemakers, and maybe even win some free grapes and equipment. The winemaker dinner a celebration of home winemakers and the delicious wines you make. Feel free to bring a few bottles of your favorite wines to share with other attendees, our growers, and hopefully some of the Musto Wine Grape Crew. Everyone will be excited to try it!

You can purchase your ticket by clicking HERE –> http://www.juicegrape.com/Competition-Dinner-RSVP/


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Event Details:

Zandri’s Stillwood inn:

1074 S. Colony Rd, Wallingford, CT 06492

February 23rd, 2019

6:30PM – Midnight

Admission is $80.00/person and your payment serves as an RSVP. You can RSVP by purchasing tickets on our website, http://www.juicegrape.com/Competition-Dinner-RSVP/, or you can call/email Christina at 860-278-7703 or cmusto@juicegrape.com. You must purchase a ticket for this event.

We are accepting requests to reserve tables. If you would like to reserve a table please include a list of names of the people in your party. Each table holds 8-10 people. If you purchase a grouping of tickets, please email Christina the names of the people you purchased the tickets for.

We will be donating all of the proceeds from the event to Dana Farber Cancer Association to help cure brain cancer. Please bring cash to purchase your raffle tickets. There is not ATM on site and we do not take credit cards for raffle tickets.

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Where to Stay:

Hotels in Wallingford, CT

Homewood Suites by Hilton Wallingford-Meriden

  • 90 Miles Dr., Wallingford, CT
  • Website
  • 7 minute drive from venue

Hilton Garden Inn Wallingford/Meriden

  • 1181 Barnes Road, Wallingford, CT
  • Website
  • 8 minute drive from venue

Courtyard by Marriott New Haven Wallingford

  • 600 Northrop Road, Wallingford, CT
  • Website
  • 7 minute drive from venue

*Please note we suggest either having a designated driver or ubering to the event.

Please RSVP/purchase your ticket by February 18th –>  http://www.juicegrape.com/Competition-Dinner-RSVP/

Space is limited, so don’t delay! We look forward to seeing you at the Winemaker Dinner!


The Musto Crush Crew

Lodi in the 2018 national news

“Forward-thinking winemakers are embracing experimentation by working with Lodi grapes that will surprise you.” – We have had the privilege and opportunity of working with our Lodi Wine Growers for over 75 years. It is great to see them getting the recognition they deserve! Lodi is MUCH more than Zinfandel. It boasts interesting grape varieties, state of the art growing practices, and winemakers who aren’t afraid to go all out.

🍷🍇 Check out the full article by clicking HERE

Free Winemaking Faults & Flaws Class

Have you ever had a funky smelling wine? Not sure what caused that smell? Come to Musto Wine Grape’s Faults & Flaws class and learn how to counteract and avoid those funky smells in your wines.

This class is FREE to attend and will be held at our store in Hartford, CT on Saturday January 5th at 10:00AM. Hope to see you there!

If you cannot make the class we will be streaming it LIVE on Facebook, so check into our Facebook page on Saturday January 5th at 10:00AM 🍷

Please EMAIL cmusto@juicegrape.com to RESERVE your seat!

Build Your Own Olive Flavors

Do you love Olives as much as Stevie? If you do then we have the olives for you! Musto Wine Grape has a new product, 2.5lbs of green olives ready to be infused and consumed!

Add your favorite spices to the olives. Oregano, crushed pepper, thyme, rosemary, basil, chilli, garlic, or mustard seed for example. Or add 1 large sliced carrot, 1/2 large onion, and 1/2 large red bell pepper, cutting the onion in 3/8 inch dice and the pepper in thin julienne cuts to create a marinade. Mix the marinade with 2 oz of virgin olive oil and 1 oz of red wine vinegar.

A great winter project or gift for your favorite foodie.

Call Musto Wine Grape to reserve your Build Your Own Olive Flavors Kit. – 877.812.1137


The “Winemaker’s Hot Toddy” – Mulled Wine

We don’t know about you but as the weather gets colder all we want to do is curl up by the fire with a good glass of homemade wine. This week however, we were thinking about mixing it up. Mulled Wine seemed to be the best option for today. It’s cold, dreary, and we need a pick  me up this afternoon. So we are cooking up some tasty Mulled Wine!

What is Mulled Wine? Well its a delicious concoction made up of wine, apple cider, and a few other drops of other tasty ingredients.  Think of it as the Winemaker’s version of a Hot Toddy. It’s satisfying, warm, and is wine infused. The perfect warm drink on a cold Sunday afternoon.

Musto’s Mulled Wine Recipe 

4 cups apple cider (or can use apple juice if you want it a little sweeter)

1 bottle of red wine (suggest cabernet, merlot, or a blend of both)

1 tablespoon – 1/4 cup of honey (depends on your sweet tooth)

2 cinnamon sticks

1 orange – juiced and zested

4 whole cloves

2-3 stars of anise (do to taste)

orange peels/wedges for garnish

Add the apple cider/juice, wine, cinnamon sticks, orange zest, orange juice, and cloves to a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add stars of anise and honey to taste. Let it simmer for 8-10 minutes. Pour into mugs, add an orange peel/wedge for garnish, and enjoy!

2018 Wine Competition Results

Good Morning Winemakers,

The results are officially here! Click the links below to access the 2018 MWG Wine Competition Results

2018 Amateur Wine Competition Winners

2018 Commercial Wine Competition Winners

Our Wine Competition Dinner will be held Saturday February 23rd, 2019 at Zandri’s Stillwood Inn. Click here to purchase your tickets. Best in show will be announced at the dinner!

Congratulations to all of the winners! Our Growers from California and Washington state will be in attendance to celebrate your wines. You don’t want to miss this event. We look forward to celebrating you and your wines in February!


Wine Competition Dinner Details:

  • Zandri’s stillwood inn:
    1074 S. Colony Rd, Wallingford, CT 06492
    February 23rd, 2019
    6:30PM – Midnight

 Please email cmusto@juicegrape.com with any questions regarding the wine competition or competition dinner.