Winemaking Inquiry

Discussion in 'Sound Off' started by Slowretrieve, Jan 4, 2006.

  1. Years ago (ca. 1983) I made a lot of wine but got away from it while the boys were growing up. Now they are grown and gone and I am going to make wine again. I remembered that you have to have a carboy, a primary fermentor, a variety of hoses, some campden tablets for sterilization and some tannin to polish the wine, then you basically ferment it for a week to let the yeast take over and rack the wine for months while it wines.

    Anyway, I go to the local vintners and she says, "Wow, you've really been out of touch for awhile, haven't you?" I don't like hearing that from a lady who must have been eight years old, but I swallowed my sedimentary pride and asked her to guide me through the marvels of modern winemaking. Turns out it is all in a kit. You don't even add sugar. You put in water and yeast, stir and let it sit a week. Then you rack it to a carboy and let it ferment for two weeks. That's it, she said, and you have the most wonderful wine in the world.

    So, I have five gallons (total cost $49) of Merlot perking in the corner, but my question is this: has anyone ever tried this new way of making quality wines and if so, how is it?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. We make a little home made wine on the side but I cant tell you how, its a secret. We make peach, apple, plum, grape and dandelion.
    But get back with us and let us know how this kit stuff tastes.

    I also have a few gallons of "Southern Indiana Moon" that I make and give as christmas gifts in half pint jars. I have had alot of people want to buy it, but its not for sale. A buddy got in my fridge once and drank half of a quart....not smart. He sat in a porch swing for 36 hours. :dizzy:

    Making good quality home made anything takes alot of practice. Good luck.

  3. I, too, have invested some time on a porch swing. One time a friend was in Europe and brought back some homemade brandy from Normandy. We drank a bottle of that golden liquid, but made the mistake of doing so in his upstairs apartment. When it was time for me to start for home I had so scoot down the stairs on my butt. Good thing I lived in the apartment below him or I may not have made it home. Anyway, I will post when I have some results.
  4. ccavacini

    ccavacini Super Mod Mod

    I'm also interested in how to make wine....I drink enough of the the dry reds...let us know how it works and what the cost is.......................................Maybe I should start saving bottles.:evilsmile
  5. I've made a lot of wine. I usualy make it in a 50 gal wiskey barrel, and do it from scratch. Never did try a kit.
  6. HickoryNut will you put me on your christmas list?
  7. The instructions said to keep the wine in the initial fermentor for 5-7 days or until the specific gravity reached 1.010, which it never reached. Yesterday, the tenth day since I started this batch, it still was not at 1.010 so I racked it to the carboy anyway.

    We'll see.:yikes:
  8. HE Must a been drinking that on Friday NITE!!!!!:dizzy: :dizzy: :dizzy:
  9. Nice post, Brew!
  10. Ok people, now we're talkin! I got into winemaking a year agoa and it is mor fun than anything else . My list of wines mad to date are: (you will wish you didn't ask):

    Merlot, 6 gals, kit wine, good stuff.

    Island mist green apple reisling, kit, easily a $15 bottle on the market, I made 30 bottles for $42.

    peach, 6 gals

    dandelion, 1 gal

    apple, 3 gals

    pineapple / kiwi, 6 gals

    French Shyrah, 6 gals, just bottled, can't have any they are mine.

    pinot Noir, kit 6 gals, still bulk aging

    strawberry, 6 gals, picked our own.

    wild raspberry from local reserve, 6 gals, heaven on earth

    black cherry from Michigan, semi dry, easily a $15 dollar wine

    blueberry wine, 6 gals, picked our own, oaked one gallon. awesome.

    I could go on, email me for a great website on home winemaking, they have great advice there. To get started takes $100 for the deluxe kit and you are making wine. This is a great hobby and if you have ever gone winetasting you will realize that you can make wine EVEN BETTER than theirs. and for like $2.50 a bottle. Cheers.

    Oh yeah, Chianti classico, Valpocello and a killer Amarone are gurgling right now in my wine room, other wise known as the little bedroom.
  11. my new best friend

    Party at Charlie's house.

  12. I am assuming, Charlie, that you recommend the kit wines? I have one gurgling in the back room now, but never tried a kit before. In the past I started from scratch and watched the carboy perk in a corner of the house for several months, then bottled it. The big difference I can see with this kit stuff is that it is real quick and even when it falls clear, it is not quite ready to drink. With the old style, once that stuff falls clear it is done aging. I think my merlot will be ready to bottle in the next day or so. Can't wait.
  13. Charlie, can you give me an idea of what kind of set-up you have? My dad used to make wine, and it was pretty good! I may have to get his set from him, if it seems functional. Need Help!
  14. I do both kits and wines from scratch, try to make one of each per month so I have something new to taste regularly. The kits made these days are 99% foolproof and very consistent. Ice wines to Chardonnays, Cabs to Zinfandels. The 'kit' for making wine that I got cost $100 and included everything but the wine kit or the fruit that you make the wine with. It included a bucket / fermenter, one carboy for aging, a hand corker that works great, a hydrometer for taking s.g.'s. and some other small stuff. All you need after that is either a kit with the juice in it or you can make one from scratch using the dozens of recipes found on the net.
    Alot of kits these days are 8 week kits or less which means that from the time you start til the time you are drinking that wine is two months. Of course the longer you hold off on a good dry red the better it will get.
    Dave Anderson at Andersons Winery in Chesterton has the kits, that is the closest place to me. I am not kidding you, this is a great way to learn wines and stock up on the wines that you like to drink, and what is cooler than presenting a wine to your friends that you made yourself?