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Old 06-18-2010, 12:59 AM   #1


I've been homebrewing beer now for about a year and a half. I would like to now start making some wine. My LHBS carries the Grand Cru series and the owner gave me a bottle of one he made a year ago to sample. I was impressed enough that I want to give it a try.

I have some very basic beginner questions though:
1) How long does the process take? I don't care about speed, but I would like to know simply for planning purposes.

2) I have no temperature control, so, at least for my beers, I am limited in what I can brew in the summer (generally, I won't brew in July or August). Is wine similarly temp-dependent? (i.e. can I ferment wine in my 75-80 (or more) degree F house this summer?)

3) Is there a good online step-by-step tutorial? My impression is that wine making from kits involves fewer steps than brewing from kits since I imagine there is no actual boiling involved. Is it as simple as combine juice concentrate, water, nutrients (?), and yeast and let ferment? Then what? Rack to secondary for long-term, bulk aging? Straight to bottles? Are oak cubes of some sort involved along the way somewhere?

Thanks for any and all help!


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Old 06-18-2010, 02:02 AM   #2
bdupree
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youtube has a lot of vids that will answer all of your questions. They will show you step by step. From what I know, and i've never made wine, you can make great wine in a month. I don't think the temp control would be a problem.



 
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Old 06-18-2010, 02:41 AM   #3
phished880
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JLem View Post
I've been homebrewing beer now for about a year and a half. I would like to now start making some wine. My LHBS carries the Grand Cru series and the owner gave me a bottle of one he made a year ago to sample. I was impressed enough that I want to give it a try.

I have some very basic beginner questions though:
1) How long does the process take? I don't care about speed, but I would like to know simply for planning purposes.

2) I have no temperature control, so, at least for my beers, I am limited in what I can brew in the summer (generally, I won't brew in July or August). Is wine similarly temp-dependent? (i.e. can I ferment wine in my 75-80 (or more) degree F house this summer?)

3) Is there a good online step-by-step tutorial? My impression is that wine making from kits involves fewer steps than brewing from kits since I imagine there is no actual boiling involved. Is it as simple as combine juice concentrate, water, nutrients (?), and yeast and let ferment? Then what? Rack to secondary for long-term, bulk aging? Straight to bottles? Are oak cubes of some sort involved along the way somewhere?

Thanks for any and all help!
1) It depends, i love that answer. Whites will be ready more quickly then reds. The kit is usually a 28 day kit, which means time to bottle, add an average of 3-6 for white and 6-12 for reds, in the bottle.

2) Wine works great with elevated temps. if you look at some yeast suppliers suggestion on temps they will be in that range. With wine you are really only looking for attenuation. Your kit will finish ferment in prob 4-10 days.

3) Kits provide very very detailed instructions. If you can't follow them, just give up. I would suggest winemaker magazine( done by same people as BYO mag) they have many of FAQ on improving your wine kits

hope that helps. i was in your position about 9 months ago. Needless to say my wife loves the tempranillo/ rioja "we" made.

 
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Old 06-18-2010, 03:42 PM   #4

thanks for the replies and the link. Looks like I'll be making some wine this summer!
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Old 06-19-2010, 03:15 PM   #5
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I went to a wine making conference recently, and Winexpert was passing out DVD's titled, "I Made This" featuring Time Vandergrift (which I heard him speak on how to make sparkling wines out of kits - very relaxed slightly funny speaker). I haven't watched it yet, but I tried a google search, and it seems that it is chopped up and on YouTube in 5 minute chapters or so.

 
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Old 06-24-2010, 02:51 AM   #6
Saccharomyces
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The kits make great wine. I do a few mods to them:

- I add a teaspoon of wine yeast nutrient to the kit.
- I rehydrate the yeast with GoFerm.
- For >12% ABV wines it helps to pitch two packs of yeast -- open up the kit to see what yeast is in there and shell out the $1.29 for a second pack, it's not exactly expensive.
- I oxygenate the must with an O2 stone before pitching the yeast.
- I stir the must daily during the first 3-4 days of primary fermentation to drive off CO2. This helps speed up attenuation since the carbonic acid slows down wine yeast metabolism (I don't know why but beer doesn't seem to suffer from the same problem, maybe due to a higher pH).
- After the last step I filter the clear wine with a 1 micron pad on a mini-jet filter system prior to bottling.

With all those steps pretty much any kit wine will be ready to drink after a month or so in the bottle.

One random tip, if there is a custom winery near you you can sample a lot of the kits there by tasting or buying a bottle to try it out. Those places are also a great source for bottles, I get my used wine bottles from a local custom winery for free.


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