First time making a kit... Are the instructions to be trusted?

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May 1, 2021
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I made three batches of wine about a year ago using Chilean grape juice and they turned out fantastic. I spent a lot of time on this forum and morewine researching and learning the process. It's been a while since I did it but I took fairly good notes.

The group buy for the Chilean juice didn't happen this year so I decided to pick a couple of kits and try that route. I got a finer wines Sauvignon Blanc and a WE reserve California Cabernet Sauvignon.

Reading through the finer wine instructions, they seem to line up a bit more with what I learned the first time around. The WE instructions however seem to be abbreviated and/or for beginners. However a lot of people say that these kits are very good made as is.

For example, the finer wine kit included a yeast starter pack which presumably had sugar and nutrients and when I pitched that starter it was rocking. In the beer world, I always make starters, even with dry yeast. The WE calls for just sprinkling a single packet. Again I know it will work, it's just not what I would consider best practice.

Next thing that I'm currently debating is it doesn't call for any nitrogen after the first 24 hours of fermentation (the finer wine kit did)... Should I abide when my gut tells me the yeast are going to be starved of nitrogen?

So I guess my question is should I use the same processes I used with the group buy juice for these kits or just trust the kit instructions?
I would trust the Fine Wine kit instructions more, just me. Yeast doesn’t use nitrogen, via stirring, but oxygen. Is that what you meant? Good stirring twice a day works wonders. Stop when you get to SG about 1.020-1.030 and seal up the fermenter with an airlock.

If you meant nutrients, add them at 1/3 sugar depletion, or roughly SG of 1.060.
I was referring to fetmaidO or the like which typically gets dosed shortly after fermentation
Winexpert is designed for complete beginners. Everything that should be included in the must, is included in the must. You do not need to add nutrient. All consumables are in the package. The instructions are optimized for a beginner who has no knowledge and no experienced help.

Don't overthink it. WE is either the first or second largest kit vendor (AFAIK), and their instructions work. For experienced winemakers the instructions are not optimal, but we are not the intended audience.

OTOH, FWK is more optimistic -- there is a belief that the winemaker can figure things out, and IMO their instructions are the best I've seen.

I started making overnight starters over 1.5 years ago, and you can do that with any yeast. Start with 1 cup water at ~95 F, add 1 to 2 tsp sugar and 1/2 tsp nutrient (your choice). Then stir in the yeast. Let it set on the counter for 4 to 6 hours, then move next to the fermenter overnight. Inoculate in the morning.
Your choice is an either or question? , , , the reconstituted juice is similar to a juice bucket.

Do you want to use that included yeast,, or your own favorite yeast?
Do you want included chemical nitrogen,, or step feeding Fermaid O > K (I would suggest Fermaid on all whites)
Do you want the bentonite,, or age in carboy to settle naturally? ( you could do both but why)