Can I skip bottling?
I've done a little bit of beer brewing and I'm considering doing a batch a of wine for an upcoming party.
Here's my I-have-no-idea-what-I'm-talking-about/newb question: how good is the wine before it goes into the bottle? Since most of this batch would be consumed at the party anyway, can I just skip the bottling process and serve it in bulk? I would use either a SS kettle with spigot or food grade plastic w/ a spigot to pour.
Although most of the people at the party like wine, I doubt any are connoisseurs... but I'd still like it to taste pretty good. If this is not feasible without bottling, I'll scrap this idea. Ideally, I'd like to make a white wine, but that would be subject to change based on recommendations any of you might have.
Edit: I forgot to mention that I would use a wine "kit", probably from NB.
You can do that. I'd probably bottle in growlers, just in case all 6 gallons doesn't get consumed. If you're going to drink all 6 gallons at one time, then it doesn't matter.
Most kit wines are ready early, but if you want to be certain, the best things to get would be less expensive kits. The higher-end kits tend to require some aging. If you like sweeter wines, those Island Mist kits are pretty good within 30 days or so. Wines with oak, high ABV, etc take longer to age and probably wont' be ready quickly.
Sure, you can skip bottling and serve after bulk aging....
Don't skip aging and serve slushy thick yeasty juice or 1-week old fusel-fire-weird-flavor beverage....
But... Wine isn't beer and especially not cider -- you won't be drinking it in 2-weeks.....
There is a reason you won't see wines in the store that are less than 1-year old.... They just aren't very good young.....
My recommendation would be to brew up a batch of wine and let it bulk age for at least 4-6 months before you serve..... A year is better, though....
If you are a little curious.... check out some of the old "How good are home made wines" threads like these 2....
some of the less expensive chardonnay kits are pretty drinkable in 6 weeks...basically the 1 month ferment/clearing and 2 weeks in the bottle to condition a little.
I'll second Yooper, the Island Mist kits are drinkable (even good) young. When I did my last one, I took the yeastiest bit at the bottom and put it straight into a carafe. Plopped it in the fridge to help the yeast settle and drank off the top. It was pretty good cold, even that young. :)
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