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TheTooth

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Hi all,

I've been brewing beer for a few years now, as well as making cider and mead. I just started trying my hand at winemaking with a couple of kits.

One was a port kit, which I think I botched pretty bad, but we'll see.

The other is a Riesling kit that I want to make as a gift for my mom and mother-in-law next year.
 

cpfan

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Welcome, and thanks for including your location in the Control Panel.

Please, when asking questions about kits, be very specific about which kit (ie brand & variety).

So how did you botch up the port? And which kit are we talking about?

Steve
 

TheTooth

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Hi Steve,

The kits I have are:


Port: Selection Limited Edition 2008 Chocolate Raspberry Port:

This is why I think I botched this kit:

From what I've read lurking on forums, I was going to follow the directions to the letter. My wife, meanwhile, looked online and saw that there was an updated version of the directions. This new direction had me add a 1/2 GALLON of water for the initial packets (1 & 2, I forget what was in them right now) and then add the juice. I did so without much thought, but then realized that I was FAR over the 3 gallon mark that the kit was supposed to make. When I re-read the directions that came with the kit, it said to use 1/2 a CUP of water. Sure enough, when I took a gravity reading it was way too low. Now, foolishly panicking, I fell back on my brewing knowledge and tried to think of a good way to add fermentables to get it up to the right SG. I used turbanado (sp?) sugar to get it closer, but it was still too low. I pitched anyway. Then, when it was time to add the included pack of corn suger in a later stage, I upped it with some more of my own to make up for more of the lost sweetness. When the fermentation finally stopped, it was now much higher than the instructions said it should be.

In hindsight, I should have just let it go as it was and hoped for the best. I think my meddling probably made things worse. Either way, it is at bottling stage now, so I'm just going to bottle it and see how it turns out.



Riesling: Selection Estate Washington Columbia Valley Riesling:

I am going to start the primary fermentation for this kit this weekend. I am going to follow the instructions and not attempt to "save" the wine if I make any more mistakes along the way. :)
 

cpfan

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Both kits are good choices. I see a lot of people coming to the forum starting with the cheapest kits. That Riesling is on my 'someday' list, but there's a few whites ahead of it, starting with the Selection Limited Edition Alsatian Riesling due in March.

Steve
 

TheTooth

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Both kits are good choices. I see a lot of people coming to the forum starting with the cheapest kits. That Riesling is on my 'someday' list, but there's a few whites ahead of it, starting with the Selection Limited Edition Alsatian Riesling due in March.

Steve
I don't really see the reason people start with the cheapest kits. I know myself (and my wife) well enough to know that if I start with the cheapest kit and don't like the results it'll discourage us and greatly delay a second attempt. That is one of the reasons I jumped into the second kit so quickly (going to start primary this weekend). I want to have another kit going in case I royally screwed up the port. LOL
 

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