2019 Winemaking Class Schedule – *UPDATED*

Musto Wine Grape’s Updated Winemaking Class Schedule 

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Oak Alternatives Class

Fermentation Planning Class

Making Consistently Flawless Wines with Daniel Pambianchi

  • Focused in fermentation science, both alcohol and malolactic, understanding and managing pH and TA changes during fermentation, and advanced wine analysis skills.
  • Saturday September 7th
  • Cost: $250.00
  • Link: http://www.juicegrape.com/Seminar-Daniel-Pambianchi/

Winemaker Bootcamp

  • Musto’s hands on winemaking class. Learn how to make wine in class from start to finish.
  • Session 1: Starts Saturday September 21st – 9:00AM-12:00PM for 5 consecutive weeks
  • Sessions 2: Starts Saturday October 19th at 1:00PM-4:00PM for 5 consecutive weeks
  • Cost: $150.00 for class
  • Cost of Adding Grapes: TBD – depends on which grapes the class is working with. You will find out the this cost the day of class
  • Link: http://www.juicegrape.com/EDUIBL-5-WEEK-WINEMAKING-BOOTCAMP/

Winemaking 101

Winemaking 201 

We look forward to seeing you in class! Please email Christina at cmusto@juicegrape.com with any questions about our winemaking classes.

Grower Jeff Bitter talks about Veraison in his vineyard for Musto Wine Grape Company Winemakers

It’s that time of year again!

Our grapes are going through veraison in California.

Veraison occurs when the berry transitions into the ripening stage. From now forward the berry will increase in sugar concentration until it is harvested at the desired brix level. Grapes for sparkling wine or champagne are harvested around 17 brix and grapes for still wine are harvested around 25 brix. The brix level will determine the alcohol level in the wine. For example, a grape picked around 25 brix should create a 12.5% alch by volume wine.

Check out our video with Grower – Jeff Bitter as he walks us through his vineyard, verasion, and what he has been working on in the vineyard thus far.

Veraison in the Vineyard with Jeff Bitter for Musto Wine Grape Co. LLC.

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Email Sales@Juicegrape.com or call 877-812.1137 for more details

about the 2019 Harvest!

How to Make Tempranillo Wine

Taking on Tempranillo

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This thick skinned complex berry bomb will fill your palate with notes of ripe red cherry, blackberry, baking spices, strawberry jam, cocoa powder, tobacco, and black pepper. A fresh, vibrant, meaty wine ready to be drunk young or cellared for extra complexity. Sounds delicious doesn’t it?

Wine breakdown: Fruit forward with earthy qualities, usually oak aged 6-18 months in French or American Oak, med (+) tannin, med (-) acidity

Yeast Suggestions: VRB yeast is our top suggestion due to its consistent fermentation rate and enhancement of flavor complexity while softening tannins. This yeast helps improve the mid-palate structure, showcase black and red fruit flavors, and works well with malolactic fermentation. Originating from Logroño, Spain this yeast is the perfect pairing to your Tempranillo fermentation.

Tempranillo Available this Fall:
– Grapes from King’s River Ranch, Sanger, CA
– Grapes from Lanza-Musto Vineyards, Suisun Valley, CA
– Juice from Central Valley, CA

Winemaking Tips: We suggest the addition of the following additives when working with Tempranillo

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– Fermentation:
o Tannin FT Rouge to help preserve the Tempranillo’s natural tannins and help preserve color. Add at the beginning of fermentation. Sprinkle into the must and punchdown.
o Booster Rouge helps enhance your wine’s color, tanninc structure, and fresh varietal aromas if you your fermentation is shorter than the grape usually needs. If you don’t have a temperature controlled cellar this is a cheap and easy tool to help enhance and maintain your fruit/wine quality. Add at the beginning of fermentation. Mix with a little distilled water, mix it up so that there are little to no clumps, mix into must.
o Opti-Red helps your wine obtain fuller body, more stable color (helps protect against oxidized color changes), and smooths the palate. Add at the beginning or towards the end of fermentation. Mix with a little distilled water, mix it up so that there are little to no clumps, mix into must.
o Maloactic Bacteria addition

– Aging:
o Oak Chips
o Oak Spirals
o Oak Barrels

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If you don’t want to do a 100% Tempranillo, but are interested in blending we have a few interesting blends for you to try. Tempranillo blends well with Grenache, Cabernet, and Syrah.

Australian Style: 65% Tempranillo, 25% Grenache, 10% Syrah

Spanish Style: 95% Tempranillo, 5% Grenache or Syrah

Rioja ”Crianza” Style: 95% Tempranillo, 5% Grenache + Age for 2 years in a French or American Oak barrel.

Rioja ”Reserva” Style: 95% Tempranillo, 5% Grenache or Cabernet or 100% Tempranillo + Age at least 1 year in barrels and 2 years in bottle

Rioja ”Gran Reserva” Style: 95% Tempranillo, 5% Grenache or Cabernet or 100% Tempranillo + Age 2 years in barrel and 2 years in bottle

Rioja ”Gran Anada” Style: 95% Tempranillo, 5% Grenache or Cabernet or 100% Tempranillo + Age at least 3 years on the lees in barrel. Grapes must be hand harvested.

Tempranillo is show stopping, crowd pleasing wine for everyone to enjoy. A great addition to any red wine drinkers cellar. Please call 877-812-1137 or email sales@juicegrape.com for more details. 

An Evening with Ron Lanza – May 8th, 2019

Happy Friday Winemakers! We are excited to announce..

“An Evening with Ron Lanza” Event from Lanza Vineyards and Wooden Valley Winery. The event will be held Wednesday, May 8, 6:00 PM at Herd Restaurant – 200 Main Street, Middletown.

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Enjoy some wines from Suisun Valley, wines from the Southern Hemisphere and an update by the Musto Family on grapes from Chile. Ron Lanza will speak about the signature grape of the Suisun Valley, Petite Sirah as well as their other excellent offerings, and answer any questions you may have.

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Also, several of the Connecticut AWS Chapters will be pouring some of their member’s wines for you to enjoy.

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This event is now open to AWS members and non-members. Click on the link below to sign-up with Herd Restaurant and pay your $35 fee per person which also includes a dinner choice of Penne Vodka, Crab Stuffed Filet of Sole, or Chicken Piccata.

 Link for Tickets: http://bit.ly/RLWD2019

Chilean Wine Grape and Juice Update

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Our Chilean grapes are ripening and flourishing. The red grapes have full color and should be arriving in late April/early May. The Chilean juices should be arriving the first week in May.

Arrival Dates: White grapes should arrive around the last week in April and the red grapes should start to arrive around the last week in April, first week in May. Get your crushers ready!

Ps- check out our grower’s Chilean Wine Festival Video HERE.

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Grapes Available: Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carmenere, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Merlot, Petite Verdot, Pinot Noir, and Syrah

Juices Available: Carmenere, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet/Merlot Blend, Malbec, Merlot, Petite Verdot, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, and Viognier

Fresco Juices Available: Cabernet Sauvignon, Carmenere, Merlot, Malbec, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Chardonnay/Semillon Blend

Give us a call or send us an email to secure your order! 

Phone: 877-812-1137

Email: sales@juicegrape.com

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:

  • Working with Chilean Wine Grapes & Juices – Saturday May 4th at 10:00AM

  • New England Viticulture –  Saturday May 18th at 10:00AM

  • SO2 Management – Saturday July 13th at 10:00AM

  • Working with Hybrid Grapes in the Winery – Saturday July 13th at 10:00AM 

$4.99 Winemaking Classes: 

  • Oak Alerntatives Class – Saturday August 17th at 10:00AM
  • Fermentation Tips & Planning – Saturday August 24th at 10:00AM

  • Making Wine from Juice – Saturday September 14th at 10:00AM

Winemaker Bootcamp Classes:

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

Daniel Pambianchi Seminar:

  • Saturday September 7th, 2019

Winemaking 101:

  • Spring classes: TBD Fall 2019

Winemaking 201:

  • Spring classes: TBD Fall 2019

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