Having one of the new, easy-to-use wine making kits or a beer brewing kit is a very exciting thing for anyone who loves beer or wine. Being able to make your own wine and beer at home lets you make some of your favorites and discover new ones, all while learning a lot more about how it’s done.
There are some variables in the process that every beginning vintner and home brewer needs to be aware of in order to ensure that their creations turn out as they intended. Temperature is one of the most important of these factors.
The yeast responsible for fermenting both wine and beer are somewhat delicate organisms. At the wrong temperature, you can end up with partially fermented wine or beer that can easily become a home for bacteria. And that bacteria will spoil everything you’ve worked for.
Being able to keep your beer brewing or wine making set-up at the right temperature is absolutely essential to the success of any project. Don’t panic, though – it’s actually not as hard as you may think to keep your beer- or wine-in-the-making at the right temperature.
For wine, a constant temperature of between 68 and 74 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal. Outside of this temperature range, you risk either having your yeast die off before its work is finished or having what is known as a “stuck” fermentation, where it’s too cold for your yeast to be active and turn the must into wine.
If you’re making beer, however, you’ll want to make sure that your fermentation happens at a temperature range of 60 to 65 degrees for ales (top fermenting yeast). For lager style beers that use bottom fermenting yeast you’ll generally want a cooler temperature for fermentation, anywhere from 50 degrees to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The lower fermentation temperatures for lagers give these beers their characteristic taste and body.
Of course, there are other factors that affect the quality and character of your beer or wine, but temperature is one of the most important. By ensuring the right temperature for your wine or beer during fermentation, you’ll have a much better chance of ending up with the kind of high quality beers and wines you’ve always wanted to make on your own.