Using Wine Concentrate in Brewing


By Henry Gustavo Gonzalez

Wine Concentrate in Brewing Beer

Hi, my name is Henry and I love: beer, wine and everything related to beverage.  I worked for many years at CITY WINERY NYC.  There I learned the basics of winemaking working through several harvests in one of the few “Urban Winery’s” at that time in the country.  From there I was sent as part of the opening team of CITY WINERY NAPA in the historic Napa Valley Opera House. CITY WINERY is no longer in the space and is now occupied by the Blue Note Jazz Club.

In the back of the building is a small room that allows us to make some great craft beer.
In this magical room we have a 7 BBL electrical system.  The system consists of the Mash Tun, Boiler, Fermenter and Brite Tank.  Due to our limitations on space, we use the fermenter on brew day as a HLT to hold our water for sparging.
Blue Note Jazz Club Brewery
When I was younger, I had the opportunity to visit Brazil, where I first encountered: “CHOPP DE VINHO” or in English “Wine Draft”.  This beverage was literally ¾ draft beer and ¼ of wine.  
From this grew an inspiration to make a beer not mixed with wine per say but co-fermented with Wine Concentrate to make something suitable for drinking while enjoying a nice Napa Valley brunch.
Now we offer 3 beers in our line-up that use Wine Concentrate as part of the recipe and is added to the wort as soon as we get a good boil rolling.  We have the Pinot Porter, Sauvignon Blanc Pilsner, and Chardonnay Pale Ale.
To make any beer all us brewers know that cleaning and sanitizing everything properly is the most important step in our little micro-brewery and the reason for our success. 


Once we have everything shiny and clean we get all our grains ready and get ready to mash.  Once we have transferred the Wort into the Boiler and get a good boil rolling it very simple, we add a 5 lb bucket for half batches ( 3 BBL ) and 10 lbs for a Full Batch (7 BBL).  The Wine Concentrate gives it a nice acidity and also provides some color specially in our Pinot Porter.


Making Pinot Porter


Here below are some shots of the beginning of the mashing process and the variety off malts that we use which are all provided by MoreBeerPro.


Malts in brewing pinot porter

From the Blue Note Jazz Club in downtown Napa, we would like to share with you a scaled down 5 gal recipe of our Pinot Porter.  I hope you enjoy, and this inspires to try something different on your next brew day.
Hasta la proxima cerveza
Until the next beer
Henry G

Pinot Porter Recipe

Suggested Yeast : Fermentis Dry US-05 American
All Grain Recipe:
7 lbs Pale Malt 2 Row
10 oz Chocolate Malt
4 oz Chocolate Wheat Malt
1.5 lbs Caramber 
10 oz Black Patent Malt
1 oz Northern Brewer @ 60 min
1 oz Northern Brewer @ 30 min
1 oz Lublin @ 30 min 
1 oz Lublin @ 0 min
Other Additions:
1 lbs Pinot Noir Concentrate 
As soon as you have a rolling boil.

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