Acids In Wine

Six acids make up the primary acids used in the wine making process. They have a direct influence on the taste, color and acidity level of the resulting wine. Three of the acids in wine are found within the grapes themselves and three come from the yeasts most often used during fermentation. In the grape you have: tartaric acid, malic acid and citric acid. Fermentation acids include succinic acids, lactic acids and acetic acids. We’ll go into all of these later. First let me mention that all of these, the acids in the grapes and the yeasts, with the exception of acetic acid, are fixed acids. This means that during the distillation process the acids will remain in the wine residue and will not leak into the juice. Acetic acid will transfer to the wine during distillation, where it becomes a volatile acid. Too much acetic acid and your wine will take on a vinegary taste. This is a wine fault known as volatile acidity.