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Old 03-10-2007, 07:47 PM   #21
MikeRLynch
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If you guys are into actual grape-wines, (kits and vinyard grapes) then the welches route isn't for you. They're more of a flavored wine-cooler drink, with a kicked up abv. They may be a way to put some variety in your actual grape wines, but I don't know, I'm not into that. I figure I'll part with a few extra bucks at the liquer store for quality wine rather than making my low quality amatuer stuff at home, so I focus on the weird and unusual recipes (meads, country wines, etc), stuff you don't find in the store.

Anyway, Welches recipes are super simple. I use 3 cans of concentrate to one gallon, top with water, measure SG and see if I've hit the 1.06 mark. If not I add a half a cup of dextrose or so to bump it up. The peach has a nice taste on it's own, but the raspberry lacks body (required glycerin to even out). Again though, this is girly drink stuff, not quality wine making.

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Old 03-10-2007, 08:11 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LouT
What about doing homemade wine without the "kits", but with some type of juice from a wine vineyard instead of actual grapes? Seems this would allow for making wine this time of year vs. only at harvest time, and (perhaps) be a bit less costly than the kits....
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Many vineyards will sell their juice to hobbyists, but again you get what you pay for.

If the vineyard owner can get $5-10 a liter for his good stuff by selling it to a winery, he's not going to sell it to you or me for less.

Have a look at this price list from Brehm:

http://www.brehmvineyards.com/SpringSalePrices.pdf

The 'pails' that they refer to are 19 litres each- just do the math. That's up to $7 bucks a bottle (assuming no waste) just for the raw juice!

You can buy 'wine grape juice' for $2-3 a litre, but the quality of the finished wine will be in proportion to the price.

There's a huge Italian and Portuguese community here in Montreal that do bulk purchases of wine grapes every fall, but they buy truck loads coming from the Central Valley in CA. They average around $4-5 a litre and it makes a decent table wine.

Maybe the foregoing will qualify me as an EAC (again), but so be it. If I'm going to go to the time and trouble of making a batch of wine or beer, I'll use the best ingredients I can afford.
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Old 03-10-2007, 08:12 PM   #23
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Yeah, Im mostly making the wine for SWMBO, which she will mostly prefer the fruity girly drinks. I just think it would be cool at harvest time to try and make some from real grapes since I'll access to free quality grapes. Lots of time to learn up on those before its time though.

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Old 03-11-2007, 08:15 PM   #24
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I don't think I have the skill level yet to justify paying 7 bucks a bottle for just the juice!!
If anyone has tried the Island Mist kits, I'm leaning toward one of them for my first batch - they have some fruit along with grapes, and are ready to drink fast, (and they are priced under $50) so I think would be good to get started. Then I'd do a white wine that needs 6mos, or so aging, then start in on some reds. Wine doesn't "disappear" as fast as beer, so I won't need to make it as regularly as brewing. I still want to "move up" to grape crushing and the whole nine yards some day. (I am Italian but have no family members to pass down the tradition of wine-making to me, wish I did.)

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Old 03-11-2007, 11:28 PM   #25
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I almost bought one of the Island Mist kits, but ended up with a white wine. I will probably try one of those next though.

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Old 03-12-2007, 03:36 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LouT
If anyone has tried the Island Mist kits, I'm leaning toward one of them for my first batch - they have some fruit along with grapes, and are ready to drink fast, (and they are priced under $50) so I think would be good to get started.
And there's nothing wrong with those kits at all- my SWMBO has commisioned me to keep the wine racked stocked with them at all times.

There's also nothing wrong with any of the other kits- just don't expect to get the equivalent of a 2002 Liberty School Cabernet Sauvignon (tonight's offering at dinner) from a $50 kit.
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Old 03-13-2007, 02:02 AM   #27
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It's a plan, then. I just need her to pick her flavor. I think I have everything else I'll need, except maybe the degassing whip tool. Need some bottles, too - don't have enough yet. If I buy I think I'm going to get screw caps, seem like they'd be easy and from what I hear they seal more consistently well than corks.

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Old 03-29-2007, 03:04 AM   #28
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great read guys, enough to get me to take a hard look at whipping up some myself.

Anyone tried this approach and can offer any differences in what the wine tastes like?

http://www.midwestsupplies.com/wine/fruit_wine.asp

I live in the South and have access to quite a bit of fresh fruit and this little kit seems to be pretty easy to whip up a gallon of fruit wine.

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Old 03-29-2007, 01:54 PM   #29
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That looks like a good little kit....I may have to look into that sometime. I have access to lots of free grapes.

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