WineXpert Chardonnay Kit

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winemaker81

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Should i just leave it or should i stir it daily like the other wines i have made?
I stir all wines daily. Caps, of course, need to be punched down. Whites and kits? Many form a foam on top, which I break up like it is a cap. Stirring the lees back into suspension during fermentation supposedly stimulates the yeast, and during the initial days the yeast needs a bit of O2.
 

BeeGee

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So the directions on the kit just mentions sprinkling the yeast ontop and putting a lid on it till its done. Should i just leave it or should i stir it daily like the other wines i have made?
It's my first time making this particular wine, so for this one, I'm following the directions to the letter. I sprinkled the yeast on top, sealed the fermenter and put an airlock in. Checked it this morning, the airlock is bubbling beautifully and the wonderful scent of Chardonnay is filling the room. 🙂 🙂 🙂
 

BeeGee

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With 3 days left before I'm due to degas, I did end up stirring the chardonnay a little bit, solely because I noticed a lot of the oak chips stuck to the walls of the fermenter as the must reduced. I didn't go crazy with the stirring, pretty much just a "once around the park, Jeeves" kind of thing. I then re-sealed the fermenter and put the airlock back on.
 

jgmann67

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With 3 days left before I'm due to degas, I did end up stirring the chardonnay a little bit, solely because I noticed a lot of the oak chips stuck to the walls of the fermenter as the must reduced. I didn't go crazy with the stirring, pretty much just a "once around the park, Jeeves" kind of thing. I then re-sealed the fermenter and put the airlock back on.
With white wines, you can stir. And @winemaker81 identifies two good reasons - introducing O2 and stimulating yeast. It's just not a necessity. But, recapturing errant oak chips sounds like a good reason too. Also, you'll eventually feel comfortable enough to go without sealing the wine and just cover it with something to keep the debris and bugs out of it (truly the only reason to cover and airlock a wine during primary fermentation).

Remember that the directions are only a guide to get you to the finish line. Pay more attention to what your wine is telling you - the SG, color, clarity, and taste... Your wine is ready when it's ready regardless of what the directions say.
 

BeeGee

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Totally understood, I just approach new wine kits/recipes the same way I approach new recipes when cooking: I make it strictly according to the directions first, then, after I've consumed it, I know what corrections/modifications I would apply the next time around. 🙂
 

winemaker81

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@BeeGee, experimentation is good. It's also a good way to FUBAR a batch. It's much less expensive to live vicariously through the errors of others! 😉

There is a VERY long thread titled Tweaking Cheap Kits (or something close), where folks post ideas for improving cheaper kits. It contains a wealth of ideas. It's also worth reading the Grape Wine, Country Wine, and General Wine making forums. While all have differences, it's all winemaking so there is commonality. You can pick up good ideas, as well as ideas it's good to avoid.
 

Basilhaydens

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The "Classic" kits are 8 liter, the "Reserve" are 10 liters. I made the Reserve Australian Cabernet Sauvignon and Australian Chardonnay for my son's wedding reception this next October. He's in town this weekend and we're tasting the extra bottles of each. I'll post my impressions in this thread after we've tasted.
Does the reserve kits make more than 6 gallon or just a stronger wine since it has more concentrated juice?
 

Basilhaydens

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Also. Tested some of this wine last night and my wife loves it. Came out crystal clear and a little over 14.5%. She wants to do another and i was thinking of the Australian kit this time.
 

winemaker81

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Does the reserve kits make more than 6 gallon or just a stronger wine since it has more concentrated juice?
The kits we are discussing have an initial volume of 6 US gallons / 23 liters. The final result will be less due to sediment and racking losses.

The kits I'm familiar with come in 3 sizes: 1 gallon, 3 gallon, and 6 gallon. The 1 and 6 are typically table wines, while the 3 gallons are specialty wines like dessert wines. Fruit concentrates may be designed to reconstitute to other sizes.

She wants to do another and i was thinking of the Australian kit this time.
I made the WE Reserve Australian Chardonnay a year ago, it came out very good.

I'm looking to make another white -- was hoping to get fresh Verdicchio, but that may not work out. I'm considering the FWK Chardonnay.
 

Bmd2k1

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The kits we are discussing have an initial volume of 6 US gallons / 23 liters. The final result will be less due to sediment and racking losses.

The kits I'm familiar with come in 3 sizes: 1 gallon, 3 gallon, and 6 gallon. The 1 and 6 are typically table wines, while the 3 gallons are specialty wines like dessert wines. Fruit concentrates may be designed to reconstitute to other sizes.


I made the WE Reserve Australian Chardonnay a year ago, it came out very good.

I'm looking to make another white -- was hoping to get fresh Verdicchio, but that may not work out. I'm considering the FWK Chardonnay.
Do you bulk age your Chard on oak?? Curious.

I'm going to fire up my 1st Chard later this month......big fan of the Not overly oaked varieties.....Menage has a very tasty one I always enjoy.

Cheers!
 

winemaker81

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Do you bulk age your Chard on oak?? Curious.
The WE kit came with medium toast American fermentation oak (45 g chips, 20 g dust), which I used. I did not add any aging oak as it didn't need it (IMO).

In the past I've done both, with and without aging oak.
 

Bmd2k1

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Just fired up my MV Chardonnay. OG 1.096 and added the provided light toast oak chips to the primary ferment. Swapped out the provided EC1118 for D47.

Cheers!
 

Venatorscribe

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I recently racked mine and added the Chitosan. Sampled a bit during racking...ooooo, gonna taste good. 😋
can I enquire about your timeline. How long in carboy - how many rankings - how long before bottling and how long in bottles before releasing to your friends. Cheers
 
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