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Old 01-02-2013, 04:17 PM   #1
tjbechtel
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Default Beer to Wine

I have been brewing beer now for a little over a year. Started with extract kits and upgraded to all-grain. I upgraded my equipment and now have the equipment to start doing wine. I have yet to attempt my first batch of wine. I am looking for something my wife can enjoy as much as I enjoy my beer. She really likes a riesling or white zin. I am looking for a good (economical) first batch of wine to get her hooked and interested in my newest hobby. I need some advice on where and what to start with.

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Old 01-02-2013, 04:24 PM   #2
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For the ease of use I recommend starting with a wine kit that has at least 15 liters of juice. I have found that the cost difference between an average and a top of the line kit amounts to about a dollar or two a bottle, so you still end up paying about 4 bucks a bottle, which is cheaper than anything you can buy that is drinkable--except maybe Two Buck Chuck (which I see is more than 2 bucks nowadays)

You are going to put the same amount of time into a cheap kit as you do a premium kit, so for the price I go for it. There are some top notch blended whites available with the juice from premier wine growing regions. I just bottled a chardonnay/semillion/savaugion blanc with grapes from Washington, California and Australia.

Getting into grape crushing and the whole bit must wait until harvest, but making fruit wines with whatever is in season can be fun too.

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Old 01-02-2013, 04:34 PM   #3
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Thanks Robert! I pay anywhere from $10-$15 a bottle for her now. So maybe if I show her the savings I can get her on board even more! Especially if I can make wine better than what she is getting at the store

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Old 01-02-2013, 06:28 PM   #4
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There is a kit called Angel Blanco which may be right up her alley.

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Old 01-02-2013, 10:12 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjbechtel View Post
Thanks Robert! I pay anywhere from $10-$15 a bottle for her now. So maybe if I show her the savings I can get her on board even more! Especially if I can make wine better than what she is getting at the store
I started making wine when I figured out I was spending $3000 a year keeping my dear wife supplied with wine that met her exacting standards! She is very impressed with the quality we get from a good wine kit.

She also thinks it's fun to help make it, bottle it, sample it, etc.
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Old 01-02-2013, 10:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saramc
Thete is a kit called Angel Blanco which may be right up her alley.
I will check this out! Thanks
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Old 01-02-2013, 11:02 PM   #7
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You already know how to make beer, which means you know how to keep things clean, know yeast are alive and know how to rack and bottle. Dont be hesitant to jump right in and get the best kit you can, you already have enough skills to do it very well. I suggest getting the Dec 2012 Winemaker mag (Cant find my copy to give you a list) or go to http://www.winemakermag.com/ webpage and looking up their top 100 kit list and starting there, it gives a wine range of possibilities.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjbechtel View Post
I have been brewing beer now for a little over a year. Started with extract kits and upgraded to all-grain. I upgraded my equipment and now have the equipment to start doing wine. I have yet to attempt my first batch of wine. I am looking for something my wife can enjoy as much as I enjoy my beer. She really likes a riesling or white zin. I am looking for a good (economical) first batch of wine to get her hooked and interested in my newest hobby. I need some advice on where and what to start with.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:03 AM   #8
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Good advice...I am going to get a kit and start next week!!

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Old 01-03-2013, 04:55 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by tjbechtel View Post
Good advice...I am going to get a kit and start next week!!
The kits I use make 23 L so be prepared for that.

Unlike the instructions on beer kits, which I enjoy violating, I've found that the closer I follow wine kit instructions the better I do. One exception: I like to give the wines 3 to 6 months to age whereas the kits say you can do it in 8 weeks. You can, but bulk aging in a big carboy (24.5 L) is an improvement in my opinion.
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Old 01-03-2013, 12:12 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobertRGeorge View Post
The kits I use make 23 L so be prepared for that.

Unlike the instructions on beer kits, which I enjoy violating, I've found that the closer I follow wine kit instructions the better I do. One exception: I like to give the wines 3 to 6 months to age whereas the kits say you can do it in 8 weeks. You can, but bulk aging in a big carboy (24.5 L) is an improvement in my opinion.
Yep, follow the instructions as close as you can except don't bottle for 6 months. That solves a whole lot of issues that beginners have (gas, sediment, "kit taste" etc.).
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