Page 7 - Grapevine JanFeb 2021_REV
P. 7

In The Winery

               mended to rinse out all the areas that will come     8.  During the ramping up of the steam, con-
               into contact with the steam.  Do a visual inspection      densed water may flow out of these open
               for dust or foreign matter in areas that will come        valves.  Allow this to happen until it turns
               into contact with the wine – filler bowl, filter hous-    to steam.  Then turn the valve toward the
               ing, filler spouts, etc.                                  closed position but do not fully close.  Leave
                                                                         the valve(s) “cracked” open to allow a small
               1.  Secure a source of steam that will be abundant        amount of live steam to flow from the valve.
                   enough to handle the set-up.  A six-spout grav-       This insures that the valve(s) has come up to
                   ity flow filter may require less output from the      the steam temperature and that it will remain
                   steamer than a 16 spout filler.                       at that temperature as long as live steam is
                                                                         flowing from it.
               2.  Secure a wine hose that will allow steam to
                   flow through it safely and use it for all the con-  9.  “Chase” the steam through the complete setup
                   nections down stream of the steam.  This hose         and throttling back valves as steam appears.
                   should also be appropriate for wine.
                                                                    10.  When a full set of steam has reached the final
               3.  Have the steamer as close to the bottle filler        destination of the end of the run (This may
                   as practicably possible while also allowing for       be the ends of every filler spout or the level-
                   a sterile filter cartridge(s) to be placed prior to   ing mechanism in some mono blocks, etc.)  –
                   the filler.  (The closer the items are – the short-   we can start timing the steaming operation.
                   er the runs - leading to less error and faster        Double check that all the filler spouts are open
                   ramp-up in the steaming cycle.)  Some bottling        and that steam is flowing.
                   units are nice since a cartridge filter may be
                   attached directly to the bottom of the unit      11.  Places to look in the filler bowl may be a drain
                   minimizing hose length.                               valve.  Make sure that it is cracked open slight-
                                                                         ly to allow for a free flow of steam.  Plus the
               4.  Place a stainless steel T with two valves prior       tops of each filter housing etc.
                   to the cartridge filter and a T with two valves
                   after the cartridge.  Accurate pressure gauges   12.  Step back and look at the operation asking
                   should be placed on the T’s so the winemaker          yourself “Is steam getting everywhere and on
                   can monitor the pressure during steaming and          all the surfaces that may come into contact
                   during bottling.  (Remember to use pressure           with the wine?”  If the answer is – “YES” pro-
                   gauges that are designed to be steamed!)              ceed to timing the operation.

               5.  Attach the hoses as if pumping wine through      13.  Most winemakers steam for a minimum of 18
                   the filter and to the bottling line.                  minutes and up to 25 or more should do little
                                                                         or no harm.
               6.  Open all valves in the beginning.  (If using a
                   mono block – make sure the automated sole-       14.  During the steaming operation – one may take
                   noid valve is in the open position to allow           steaming temperature crayons around to dou-
                   steam into the filler bowl.) {If a safety blow off    ble-check they have achieved the desired tem-
                   valve is not on your steamer – please install         perature at a specific location on the bottling
                   one yourself or take it to a qualified mechanic       line. Steaming crayons are pencil like devices
                   to install one.}                                      made of materials that melt at certain tem-
               7.  Turn on the steamer to initiate the creation of
                   steam leaving all the valves down stream of             Caution is important when using these cray-
                   the steamer open.                                     ons on parts that may contact the wine.  If
                                                                         wishing to test an area coming into contact

               877-892-5332                    The Grapevine • January - February 2021                             Page 5

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