Saturday, October 4, 2014


Wine is a product cherished by people for centuries and is associated with cultural and religious events in many parts of the world. Though it is made from grapes by yeast fermentation, there are other raw fruits like apple containing significant levels of sugar that can be converted into wine. The wine consumption got a boost after it was established that Red Wine has some phytochemical constituents like resveratrol and a few other antioxidants implicated in anti-aging and anti-cancer phenomena. Traditionally wine is made by crushing the grapes and seeding the mash with yeast for fermentation under anaerobic conditions. Many house holds make wine at home during festive occasions like Christmas but modern wineries deploy technologies that can produce thousands of liters of wine in a day through massive fermentation vats and large number aging vats. France and California in the US are reputed for making high quality wine products. Now comes a report that some one in the US has invented a gadget called Miracle Machine for making wine with least hassle. Here is a take on this new development.

"A certain historical figure is reputed to have once turned water into wine, and whether you believe this event actually happened or not, the idea is a compelling one. Now, a wine expert and an entrepreneur claim that they have created a device that turns this concept into a reality. Just to ensure the connection is made, they have called the device the Miracle Machine. The Miracle Machine, being brought to market by wine expert Kevin Boyer and entrepreneur Philip Vine, is a device capable of turning water into wine in a matter of days Added to the water are a set of ingredients that includes grape concentrate, yeast, and a finishing powder that imbues the liquid with barrel-aged flavor. The wine is fermented using a method the pair aren't willing to discuss, saying only that it involves "an array of electrical sensors, transducers, heaters and pumps." All of the components inside the Miracle Machine are connected to an Arduino microcontroller that ensures the process is happening as it should. An accompanying app, linked to the Miracle Machine via Bluetooth, tracks the progress of the wine. It can also be used to select the perfect wine for your palette, telling you which ingredients to purchase in order to make the wine of your choice. The Miracle Machine is due to be funded via Kickstarter, with interested parties invited to register for notification when the campaign goes live. The retail price of the Miracle Machine once it goes on general sale is listed at US$499. The ingredients required to make the wine will be available through both the Miracle Machine website and Amazon. The cost of producing a single bottle of wine (that supposedly tastes like a $20 bottle) is estimated at $2, though the proof will be in the tasting once the Miracle Machine has been launched."

It is interesting that the above entrepreneurs have by passed the crushing step and delivers filtered wine, ready to drink. The innovators claim that the wine produced in their machine matches in quality with the highest quality product available in the market. The price mentioned for this gadget appears to be reasonable and is affordable to most middle class families, if this is true. However the million dollar question is whether this is a clever ploy by the wine manufacturers to promote wine and whether any working model exists any where in the world. Assuming this is true, it is not clear what miracle is involved in making a wine, for which the making process is known for centuries! 


No comments: