Making wine from grapes can require a bit of work. This is not only because you are dealing with fresh fruit as opposed to an easy-to-use concentrated juice, but it’s also because you need a lot of grapes to make a batch of wine.
In general, you’ll need around 80 pounds of grapes to make a 5 gallon batch. With most other berries such as blackberries, strawberries, etc., you’ll only need about 15 pounds to make the same 5 gallons.
All these grapes need to be taken off the stems as well as crushed. You can get away with doing this all by hand if you are only making 5 gallons or so. But what if you’re trying to make enough grape wine to last you all year, while the grapes are in season? Then you’ll need help.
This is where a grape destemmer comes into play. Not only does the destemmer remove the grapes from the stems, but it also crushes the grape, all in the same process. It’s easy, and it’s quick.
Another option would be to just get a grape crusher and remove the grapes from the stem manually. The advantage to getting just a grape crusher is that most grape crushers can crush other fruits besides grapes, whereas a destemmer is limited to just grapes.
Ed Kraus is a 3rd generation home brewer/winemaker and has been an owner of E. C. Kraus since 1999. He has been helping individuals make better wine and beer for over 25 years.