Review: Amphora Wine Log

Over the course of one week I have been using the Amphora Wine Log Professional (Trial Version 7.09) from Fermsoft.

The application is available in two versions, Basic and Professional, and run on nearly all operating systems including MS Windows (Win2000 or greater), Linux and Mac OS X (10.6 or greater).

Amphora Wine Log is a friendly application that is used to track and manage winemaking process, but shortly you find that is more than that.

Mainly developed to the wine industry, it can be configured to run to the mead industry without problems.

Amphora Wine Log can track all your tanks, barrels, carboys, or other containers. Basic information about containers such as type, date acquired, manufacture date, location, capacity and cost is held in the container inventory. A user-defined map of container location and status provides an interactive visual representation of the Winery / Meadery.

Amphora Wine Log organizes production operations into batches. Each batch represents some identifiable unit of wine / mead. The program is very flexible as it allows the user to define a batch in any way. For example, a batch can be composed of a single container or it can be composed of multiple containers. Most of the fields in the Batch Information dialog are self-explanatory. Many are drop-down boxes that provide a list of choices. However, all fields (including the drop-down boxes) are editable. You can enter anything you like, even if it does not appear in the drop-down list.

Where a Container becomes linked to a Batch, you can assign a Winery / Meadery process. The process available include Cold Settle, Cold Soak, Alcoholic Fermentation, Malolactic Fermentation, Cold Stabilization, Sur Lie Aging and Bulk Aging. Amphora Wine Log support any number of concurrent processes in any number of containers.

During a Process you can run a number of events or activities, such additions, bottle, cap management, chaptalization, filter, measurements, press, rackings, tastings and top ups.

The racking event provides a automated method to transfer wine / mead between containers with a record of all operations. Amphora Wine Log accept the racking between single containers, multiple containers to a single container , single container to multiple containers and blending from different batches. Product loss during the racking process is considered and is user-defined.

The measurement event is used to enter measurements done during the course of one Process like the Alcoholic Fermentation. The date, time, lab reference and container can be specified to the measurement of Sugar, TA, pH, Free SO2, temperature and Alcohol. Amphora also provides 10 custom fields that can be used to enter other required measurements. A graphic representation of the measurements is available and is very useful to control a Process.

In the bottle event you can specify the bottle type, size and capacity, closure type and is even possible to add the label image.

In the Inventory is accepted any type of entry, like honey, grapes or nutrients arranged by category. If you enter the supplier and price, the application calculate the cost of your batch and can fill a purchase order based on the re-order quantity.

One of the most powerful features of Amphora Wine Log is the ability to create customized database queries in SQL (Structured Query Language). Using queries, information can be extracted from the database in a near infinite number of ways. The extracted data can then be exported to spreadsheets where customized reports can be generated. This feature will mainly appeal to users who have some database knowledge.

I’m not tested features that are exclusive of the winemaking process like the vineyard management and not tested the sale feature (there are big differences between the USA and EEC Countries in matter of invoice requirements).

Amphora Wine Log have many features and are a amazing application. There are features I did not mention like the huge quantity of reports and charts. If you are interested to know more about Amphora Wine Log you can download a 30 days trial version in the Fermsoft website.

To conclude, I would like to thank to Mr. Robert Tyrie (Fermsoft owner and Amphora Wine Log developer) who demonstrated total availability to clarify my doubts.