The refractometer (which measures 0-50 Brix) is an essential piece of wine making equipment used by vineyardists and winemakers. This tool takes quick and accurate measurements of the amount of sugar (percentage Brix) in grapes or other fruit. Determining the percentage Brix allows the winemaker to determine the ripeness of the fruit in the field, helping to determine optimum harvest time.
This Hanna Instruments brand refractometer is rugged, lightweight and waterproof- perfect for measurements in the lab or field. The actual measurement of the refractive index is simple and quick and provides the winemaker a standard accepted method for sugar content analysis. Samples are measured after a simple user calibration with deionized or distilled water. The instrument measures the refractive index of the grape must. With only a small sample size required (as little as 2 metric drops), it displays quick, accurate results in approximately 1.5 seconds. The stainless steel sample well makes it easy to clean and corrosion resistant. These digital refractometers eliminate the uncertainty associated with mechanical refractometers and are ideal for fast, reliable measurements in the field.
While the refractometer is best used in the field for unharvested grapes and fruit, The hydrometer is the wine making tool we suggest home winemakers use when measuring sugar content once the juice has been pressed. Knowing the sugar level at which your juice began can be important in estimating the alcohol content the juice will ultimately yield.