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Mjconn42

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Has anyone tried their FWK Riesling yet? I pitched it per directions on 3/29, went to secondary then aging, and bottled on 8/10 as I wanted to take it to a wedding 9/17. When I opened a bottle on 9/12 it had a bitter follow through, and I ended up not taking it. I'm letting it age more in the bottle, but there were no indicators something was amiss, and it tasted great at bottling time. The color is good and the smell is fantastic, nice floral green apple aroma.
We made a FWK Riesling earlier this year along with two other white wines and four red wines. It was excellent right from day one.
 

silverbullet07

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Silverbullet, My Meritage also started at 1.095 (23 Brix) and I debated adding a little sugar but passed on that to get the 'feel' for this FWK blend. After 48 hours the major 'CO2 bubbling' is done (does that have a specific name?) and I've just now added the Yeast Nutrient. I am sitting at 1.042 SG (10.5 Brix) and the must is at 80deg F (keep eating those sugars little yeast cells). Oh, I did bring my room temperature up from 68 to 72 at the 24 hour mark.

Smells great and the juice tasted fantastic...but I like sugar. That's a bad thing, so I balance that out by drinking 'dry' wine!
Both my Sonoma and Meritage hit 1.020 tonight. I fastened up the lids and air locked them now 6 Week EM.
 
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I bottled the Sauvignon Blanc and Tavola Pinot Noir last night, and the Frutta Strawberry tonight. I planned to bottle the Frutta Blackberry as well, but ran out of steam.

Sauvignon Blanc -- When I tilted the carboy at the end of the racking, I knew there was a very fine layer of sediment that I was going to leave behind. As I tilted the carboy, I noticed a bit of black in it, obviously carbon. This was actually a good thing, as it was clearly visible and helped me stop the rack before I sucked up any sediment. Overall, I'm pleased with this one and will make it again. (There was 1.5 glasses of muddy wine in the carboy that tasted quite good!)

Pinot Noir -- This is a Tavola with no skin packs, aged 5 months with 1 oz medium toast Hungarian cubes. It's got a very nice fruitiness to it that I accented by adding a bit more glycerin than normal for a red. It's intended purpose is for friends & family who like red but are not heavy red drinkers. It fits that purpose well, and it's a wine I'll drink with a roast turkey or chicken. If I make this one again, I'll either add 1 skin pack, or I'll go in a different direction and make a Forte.

Strawberry -- This one had more sediment than it should have. I accept responsibility for that, as my last racking was obviously dirty. I stopped the final rack with nearly a bottle in the carboy. I had previously added 1 wine conditioner pack (kit includes 2) and limited bench testing tonight indicated it needs both. Discussions with others who have made this kit prepared me for adding both packs. It's a bit sweet for my taste, but I admit it's really good. I wouldn't serve it with a meal (my tastes run to bone dry), but I seriously doubt I'll have much left a year from now. Folks will love this one.

I poured the remainder in the carboy through coffee filters, and it's surprisingly good. This wine is VERY dangerous, as it goes down way too easy.
 

jgmann67

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After 2 weeks, I racked my Sonoma blend wines from primary and secondary. They finished around 0.995, which is just the norm for me with FWK wines. They’ll sit in secondary while the lees settle, then we’ll rack and add oak (both the stuff Matteo provides and an extra spiral or M+ toast French oak) and put the wine to bed for 6 months.

I bottled my Barbera (which is about 16 months old) and Zin (only 9 months). Both are tasting nicely and will hopefully improve over the next year.

Still have a Pinot, Meritage, 2 Bordeaux blends, a Merlot, a PS, and a Cab Franc/PS blend to get into the bottle. Yes… I’ve fallen behind a little.
 
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I ordered 2 Tavola Merlot kits with no skin packs, which arrived today. It surprised me, as I know both kits shipped, but there was just one box. I checked the FedEx records -- yup, just one box. But LP shipped 2 kits???

Then I realized the box was larger than previous kits, sure enough, both were inside.

These kits are part of an experiment -- on Saturday we crush 8 lugs of Grenache and 8 lugs of Tempranillo. Post fermentation I will start the Merlot kits, and once reconstituted, I'll be adding the pomace from Grenache to one and the pomace from Tempranillo to the other. This is in lieu of making a second run wine -- I'm using the pomace in place of skin packs, and am seeing if I get a significantly different result using different grape pomaces.

A third grape batch is a field blend of Syrah, Petite Sirah, and Mourvedre. I'm considering splitting that pomace between the two Merlot batches OR freezing it and purchasing a third Merlot kit later on.
 
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So I was able to find some detail on my favorite commercial wine. It is a blend and it appears they blended wine made with four different yeasts. I am thinking of trying to duplicate this (as best to my ability anyways) using FWK's, but would need to drop one of the four yeasts as I can only fit 3 kits in my Flextank, any suggestion which to drop?


96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.8% Merlot, 0.2% Cabernet Franc
Aging occurred for 25 months in 82% new French oak and 18% new American oak barrels.
6-9 days on skins, CSM, Premier Cuvée, Pasteur Red, D254
 
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So I was able to find some detail on my favorite commercial wine. It is a blend and it appears they blended wine made with four different yeasts. I am thinking of trying to duplicate this (as best to my ability anyways) using FWK's, but would need to drop one of the four yeasts as I can only fit 3 kits in my Flextank, any suggestion which to drop?

96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.8% Merlot, 0.2% Cabernet Franc
Aging occurred for 25 months in 82% new French oak and 18% new American oak barrels.
6-9 days on skins, CSM, Premier Cuvée, Pasteur Red, D254

You aren't thinking of adding all four yeasts to one fermentation bucket are you?? I would guess the commercial was made in four separate buckets.
 
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No, I was thinking of doing 3 Forte Cab Sauv kits using 3 different yeasts in three different fermenters. Then after clearing, add all three to my Flextank and then add in 4 oz French and 1 oz American oak cubes.

Split your three kits into four fermenters, instead of three and you can use all four yeasts.
 

Gilmango

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So I was able to find some detail on my favorite commercial wine. It is a blend and it appears they blended wine made with four different yeasts. I am thinking of trying to duplicate this (as best to my ability anyways) using FWK's, but would need to drop one of the four yeasts as I can only fit 3 kits in my Flextank, any suggestion which to drop?


96% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3.8% Merlot, 0.2% Cabernet Franc
Aging occurred for 25 months in 82% new French oak and 18% new American oak barrels.
6-9 days on skins, CSM, Premier Cuvée, Pasteur Red, D254
Well reading profiles on those 4 yeasts I'd probably drop the Premier Cuvee, however the CSM is only suited for up to 14% and is also a little harder to find in sizes below 100 grams, so it is the most finicky of the yeasts so that could be a reason to drop that one instead. But I'm guessing that CSM was maybe only used on that tiny 0.2% of Cab Franc (as it helps reduce vegetal flavors) or on some other lower Brix fruit which came in that year. I would guess that one or two of those yeasts was the dominant part of the blend -- perhaps the winery would share that info or you could see which of those yeasts they use the most in other high end wines?

But reading more about that wine, which seems like Columbia Crest Reserve from 2007, they emphasize taking the top 10% of grapes from tops sites in the Wahluke Slope, offering
aromatics, texture and complexity; the Cold Creek area, which add flavor and fruitiness; and on the Horse Heaven Hills, which contribute balance and body to the finished wine (all from the Factsheet pdf you can download on this page: 2007 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon | Columbia Crest Winery . So probably hard to replicate with just Cabernet from Lodi.

Also might want to sub a Meritage blend for one of the Cabernets to replicate some of the added complexity from the Merlot (or you might just top with Merlot a/o Cab Franc you have already made).

And all was aged in brand new barrels for 25 months so it sounds super oaky, so I'd use more oak, and ideally a barrel too.

It only spent 6-9 days on skins so probably not time to do EM (or not a very long one) even if that is part of your usual protocol.
 
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And all was aged in brand new barrels for 25 months so it sounds super oaky, so I'd use more oak, and ideally a barrel too.
That depends on barrel size -- due to the lower interior surface area to volume ratio, wine can remain longer in larger barrels and get less oak. If they're using 60 gallon barrels, IIRC, 2 or 3 years of bulk aging is not a problem. If using >120 gallon barrels (puncheons?), the timeline can be longer.
 

Bprinc

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Does anyone happen to know the volume of the juice in the Forte Cabernet Sauvignon kit? Doing a double batch and I'm not sure how much water to add. I don't have markings on the fermenter.

 

Jovimaple

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Does anyone happen to know the volume of the juice in the Forte Cabernet Sauvignon kit? Doing a double batch and I'm not sure how much water to add. I don't have markings on the fermenter.

I think it's 1.6 gallons but I would call Label Peelers to be sure.

Edit: Per Matt from Label Peelers in his post below, it's 2 gallons of concentrate for Forte kits.
 
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