It’s a question that comes up from time to time, maybe mostly in the home winemaking community, but also from those wondering how many acres they really are going to need. So how much wine comes from a grape vine?
So first, this is an impossible question to answer without one other one answered first. How much yield are you expecting? Yield is the amount of fruit being grown by each vine. For some examples, old vine Zinfandel get maybe a ton per acre. Napa Valley and other high end regions limit yield to about 2 tons per acre. Newer less expensive vineyards on California’s Central Coast produce something along the lines of 4 tons per acre. Lastly, if you’re making bulk wine in California’s Central Valley, you might get 10 tons per acre.
So there are 2,000 pounds in a ton. You’ll reasonably be able to plant somewhere along the lines of 200 vines in an acre. It takes about 2.5 pounds of grapes to produce a bottle of wine.
There’s some math involved, but generally each grape vine is going to produce all of 4 bottles of wine per year for a vineyard producing about 2 tons per acre.
The issue as you can probably see is that to produce a barrel of wine each vintage, you’ll need something along the lines of 75 grape vines, or about a third of an acre.
That puts the 5,000 square foot lot I live on in some perspective.