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Wine Making Talk

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  1. W

    Finer Wine Kits

    Excellent idea, thanks, Brian.
  2. W

    Finer Wine Kits

    Great! Thanks! At some point I think I should stop opening the fermenter up to punch the bags down so I don't keep exposing the must to the air. Maybe when the bags sink and don't float up again?
  3. W

    Finer Wine Kits

    I have a Speidel 30 liter fermenter, the one with the humongous air lock. My FW Zinfandel kit is in primary fermentation and nearing 1.000 SG. I'm thinking of just letting it go until the fermentation is done, since it has been under air lock the entire time (except when I punch down the skins...
  4. W

    Brew belt or heating pad or ????

    I use these big silicone elastic bands to hold the Inkbird sensor to the fermentor. They're a little too large to hold tightly, so I add a little block of wood between the band and the fermentor on the other side from the sensor to tighten it up a bit. I could also just tie a knot in the band to...
  5. W

    Brew belt or heating pad or ????

    I use an Inkbird, a brew belt AND a brew pad. Both are necessary because my winery is a small room under the entryway stairs next to the garage and it's between 55 and 60 degrees F year 'round. Great for storage, not so much for brewing.
  6. W

    Degassing

    I would second this suggestion as well. It takes a few manual pumping sessions a day for a few days but it saves the AIO for more important jobs.
  7. W

    CO2

    I second this method, it's exactly what I do.
  8. W

    Used wine bottles

    I put a couple of tablespoons of water in the bottles and put 2 or 3 at a time in the microwave for 2-3 minutes on high. Pull them out using a hot pad holding them by the neck and usually the label pulls right off. A little cooking oil on a paper towel rubs the glue off easily.
  9. W

    Totally stupid question....

    Guess there's something for everybody. The church key I keep in the winery is smaller than average so the rounded end doesn't reach far enough toward the center to give proper leverage. The pointed end doesn't puncture the cap, it just provides more leverage. Both ends probably work fine on a...
  10. W

    Totally stupid question....

    I just use a standard old beer can opener, otherwise known as a church key. The pointed end, that is, not the bottle-opener end. Works like a charm. The point reaches almost to the very center of the cap and you get good leverage.
  11. W

    Wood chips in Dextrose?

    I can't speak about cane sugar vs dextrose in wine (I don't make sweet wines) but I started making beer many years ago before dextrose was widely available so I used cane sugar. The beer I made in those days using cane sugar had a distinct apple cider-y flavor, even when only used for CO2...
  12. W

    Next Level Oak

    Thanks, Mike. My first application is with a WE Australian Chardonnay, which doesn't need much oak, so I'm going to just leave the sticks in for about 3 days or so rather than for a full week (I can already see some added color from the oak) and save them for another batch of a white. I'll let...
  13. W

    Next Level Oak

    Mike, I received my order yesterday and put the oak to work today. Thanks for the nice thank you note. Do you have any recommendations on whether or how many times the oak pieces can be re-used before they're spent, or do they need to be replaced for each new batch? Thsnks, Wayne Freeman
  14. W

    Other peoples wines

    Oh, that IS a shame. I didn't have a local source for WE kits until just a couple years ago, so that's why I missed that.
  15. W

    Other peoples wines

    I have no official documentation for my assertion, just that it's what I was told by Italian acquaintances while I lived in Italy for a time. It is, of course, opinion, but it's the opinion of some Italians. Not that Brunello isn't a wonderful wine; it is. It's just the opinion of some Italians...
  16. W

    Other peoples wines

    Thanks for satisfying my curiosity. I kinda thought it might have been Spagnols. You're right, it's made from a sangiovese grape as Chianti is, but grown and made outside of the Chianti region. Brunellos are good wines but Italians consider them to be mostly for tourists and export due to their...
  17. W

    Other peoples wines

    Who did make that kit? I've never seen a Brunello kit anywhere. Thanks
  18. W

    Do you use tap water for wine making ?

    I used to use spring water, but installed a RO system under the kitchen sink a few years ago. That's what I use now. I figure next to distilled, that's the closest I can come to what fills those little grape skins before we (or our kit makers) crush 'em. I should add that our water here along...
  19. W

    What’s wrong with whipping to degas?

    I never count the pumps. I pump for maybe a minute or so each time, until it's bubbling pretty well. Of course, after a few days, the bubbling decreases and I have to look closer to find any bubbles. It also depends on how much head space there is. I'll do this every time I make a trip down to...
  20. W

    What’s wrong with whipping to degas?

    Although I have the AIO wine pump I use it for everything but degassing. Racking and bottling are far more important uses for it. For degassing, I've repurposed (or added a purpose for) the AIO Head Space Eliminator. I have an old Vacu-Vin and have combined that with the head space eliminator...
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