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someirishman

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So I've finally bought myself a glass carboy and the Eclipse Lodi Old Vines Zinfandel with Grape Skins.


Not my first 16l kit but is my first 16l kit with 2l grape pack. I am going to ferment in my fastferment chronicle as I always do primary and secondary cause its very easy and no racking, then Ill bulk age it in the carboy for a few months if I can keep my hands off it at xmas! the chronicle is handy for grape pack with its wide neck for mesh bag, looked like a monster from tremors movie when filled!


From other reviews here I was expecting oak powder in primary and oak cubes in secondary but it came with two 30 gram packs of oak cubes and instructions say not to add any cubes at primary and add them both after degassing so thats what ill do. I wont be adding the sorbate and ill add a little metabisulphite when going into carboy and a little more at bottling. I was also expecting to see two different yeast strains but only came with ec 1118 so thats what went in, also came with 30 wine labels. og 1.094. looks deep purple must and smells great, cant wait to taste after all the reviews ive been reading.
 
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Mismost

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I was happy with mine at bottling. It is just laying down now and getting better......I hope!
 

someirishman

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How long did u bulk age yours and how long did you leave oak cubes in? Instructions say 8 days for oak I think but seems short, I might even leave skins for longer maceration since I don't need to rack with my fermenter.
 

opus345

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I have been having good results with my WE reds by doing the following:

Use the included Bentonite
Do not use the included Sorbate
Do not use the included clarifier (Citrosan/Isinglass)
Use mesh bag for grape skins. I've tried not using the bag and have made a mess each time. Still working out the process.
Age in secondary for 9-12 months
Rack secondary every 3 months and add .25 Kmeta
Add Oak (cubes, spirals, or sticks) during 2nd/3rd racking and leave 4-12 weeks.
Add .25 Kmeta and bottle
 

someirishman

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4 to 12 weeks with the oak wow, do you think it might be too much with this zinfandel? I may skip the isinglass too as it wont be going into the carboy for about 4 to 6 weeks and will be fairly clear before it even starts to bulk age. I could add the 60g of oak cubes to carboy for few months before racking and kmeta and bottling just not sure if it would be too oaky for a zin.
 

Putterrr

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i have always used the supplied clarifiers with my kits and let then bulk age for 12 months. even doing that with additional rackings, these grape skin kits continue to drop sediment or in some cases wine diamonds. patience is the key.

cheers
 

Boatboy24

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4 to 12 weeks with the oak wow, do you think it might be too much with this zinfandel? I may skip the isinglass too as it wont be going into the carboy for about 4 to 6 weeks and will be fairly clear before it even starts to bulk age. I could add the 60g of oak cubes to carboy for few months before racking and kmeta and bottling just not sure if it would be too oaky for a zin.
The cubes will give up all they've got in 6-8 weeks, tops. 60g may give you what seems to be a somewhat strong oak flavor at first, but it falls back over time. I like to wait to add the cubes until after the wine has cleared. Then add cubes and give it a month or two before racking again.
 

jgmann67

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The cubes will give up all they've got in 6-8 weeks, tops. 60g may give you what seems to be a somewhat strong oak flavor at first, but it falls back over time. I like to wait to add the cubes until after the wine has cleared. Then add cubes and give it a month or two before racking again.
I wonder this - I rack on a three month schedule. I realize oak cubes probably don't give up any more oaky-goodness after a couple months. But, is there any harm in leaving the oak for the full three months?
 

pgentile

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I have been having good results with my WE reds by doing the following:

Use the included Bentonite
Do not use the included Sorbate
Do not use the included clarifier (Citrosan/Isinglass)
Use mesh bag for grape skins. I've tried not using the bag and have made a mess each time. Still working out the process.
Age in secondary for 9-12 months
Rack secondary every 3 months and add .25 Kmeta
Add Oak (cubes, spirals, or sticks) during 2nd/3rd racking and leave 4-12 weeks.
Add .25 Kmeta and bottle
I'm on my 3rd WE Old Vine Zin, 1 month in bulk, it's my favorite of the kits I have done. I follow the same process as @opus345. No sorbate or clarifiers. And at 9-12 months it's pretty good, not as good as my fresh-grape zin, but pretty darn good.
 

Brian55

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I wonder this - I rack on a three month schedule. I realize oak cubes probably don't give up any more oaky-goodness after a couple months. But, is there any harm in leaving the oak for the full three months?
I bulk age for 12 months without racking, the oak stays in the entire time, no issues. FWIW
 

someirishman

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The cubes will give up all they've got in 6-8 weeks, tops. 60g may give you what seems to be a somewhat strong oak flavor at first, but it falls back over time. I like to wait to add the cubes until after the wine has cleared. Then add cubes and give it a month or two before racking again.
Settled then I'll add the oak into carboy for bulk aging when its clear and leave them in until its time to rack and bottle, Think ill bulk age for 2 or 3 months then bottle, I must get another kit and bulk age for a year and see the difference. Think ill leave skins in for 2 or 3 weeks also since am not racking and theres no rush.
 

Boatboy24

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I wonder this - I rack on a three month schedule. I realize oak cubes probably don't give up any more oaky-goodness after a couple months. But, is there any harm in leaving the oak for the full three months?
Not as far as I'm concerned. I've done that (or longer) plenty of times.
 

cmason1957

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I wonder this - I rack on a three month schedule. I realize oak cubes probably don't give up any more oaky-goodness after a couple months. But, is there any harm in leaving the oak for the full three months?
I routinely leave my oak cubes in there from one racking until the time for the next, which is generally about 3-4 months later. I am not as good at hitting exactly the three month mark as some other folks seem to be. Being lazy is often a good thing in winemaking.
 

jgmann67

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I routinely leave my oak cubes in there from one racking until the time for the next, which is generally about 3-4 months later. I am not as good at hitting exactly the three month mark as some other folks seem to be. Being lazy is often a good thing in winemaking.
Procrastinators make the best wine...:r
 

ehammonds

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Started mine just now. Was surprised there was no oak powder as the instructions suggests there is. I floated the skins in freely and will do an extended maceration with this one for probably 4 weeks in primary. After it clears, it'll get its turn for about five months in the barrel, then bulk age for another six months or so. Looking forward to this one.
 

someirishman

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Did your comes with two 30g pack of oak cubes too? strange no powder like others have had in the past, I wonder why they changed.
 

someirishman

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Ok guys little update, So looking at my notes this morning this kit was started on 5th and its been 17 days fermenting and pushing down the skins everyday, fg is 0.994 so I removed skins got most of the juice squeezed out and added 2 grams of kmeta and degassed a little, I then transferred to carboy with the two packs of oak chips, my fermenter shown 23.5 liters after yeast ball was removed so I was expecting to have 500ml left over for topping up if I wanted to rack in couple of months, But after going into carboy its short by about 500ml, I guess I should of tested carboy to make sure it was 23 liter but it must be 24 liter as its a European 5 gallon carboy. I am not too worried right now as i've added kmeta and there will still be a little action with the oak and airlock to keep it good for few weeks, Do you guys think I should top it up with another wine? I've got a cheaper bottle of zinfandel at hand and some vintners reserve merlot, Or should I just leave it and rack in a month or so again with more kmeta?


Lastly this is very dark color for a zinfandel almost merlot dark, how do you guys enjoy drinking this? room temp like a red or chilled?

IMG_20170922_112528.jpg
 

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