from ales to vino in Ohio

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Sep 14, 2009
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Hey all, I am a homebrewer in columbus ohio. Have been here for 5 yrs now but grew up in West virgina and my dad always made blackberry,cherry and dandylion wine every year (thats what we had on the farm). He also made ales and that is my 1st love. Wine being the 2nd and i now seem to have empty carboys sitting and i want to fill them with wine and mead. I have made one batch a pinot noir that i started the day my son was born 11\8\02 and only have 5 bottles of it left. It has been 5 yrs since i tasted it last we are saving the rest for mile stones in his life. we pretty much gave away most of it. Anyways im here to learn a few things as i have all of the equipment i need but am not that hip to the way things are done.
Welcome aboard. Hope we can help you in the future, and we even pick your brains about ales. I'm about to start my first beer with dried lager yeast.

You have a 7 year old home made Pinot Noir that you are saving for future events. You will probably be disappointed.
I wouldn't expect the wine to have a 7 year shelf life, never mind longer.

Welcome aboard.
Alot depends on how much sulfites you added. I doubt it will last that long for you to have a "special" milestone.
What was it you made? Was it a kit and if so which one. Most kits are designed for fast drinking. The higher end ($$$) kits may last a long time.
it was made from grapes i ordered from a local winemaking\homebrewing shop. My friend who showed me how to brew was also a 20 yr vet at winemaking. He said the same about kits(short shelf life) i dont remember the details of how much of anything we put in it. But it sounds like a great reason to pop a cork and see. If its bad i guess i'll go to a vinegar forum.
hello and welcome to the forum,

nice to have some more experience on board, any questions just ask, it's what we're here for.

I wouldn't buy into the short shelf life claims of kits. I think it is BS and just a marketing ploy to get you to drink the wine faster and to buy mire kits. We recently drank the last bottle of the first kit I ever made. It was a 5 year old Wine Expert Vintner's Reserve Pinot Grigio that I did not add any extra sulfites to when I bottled. It was absolutely fantastic. The other night I drank a bottle of Wine Expert Island Mist Exotic Fruits White Zin that is well over 2 years old. No extra sulfites in it as well. It was just as good as when it was fresh if not better. While I do recommend adding the extra sulfites when bottling, I think these wines mature and age as well as any other wine if stored in a decent setting.
i make fruit wines and have had many go over 2 years. none of which were bad to shelf life. some were not so good in the first place and hoped age might fix em. no such luck with some, better with others.
so the old saying wine gets better with age is BS to a point or at least thats what im getting from this. I guess i just dont get it. I have barley wines and high gravity ales in the basement that are 3 or 4 years old and are better each time i tast them. With beer its the hops and alc content that perserve the beer. The more hops and alc the longer it will keep. Guess i figured that if wine has a 13 - 15 % alc and my beer only has 8 - 10% that the wine would keep much longer. :d
I had a special bottle my dad bought in '72 with special labeling having his name on it. I called Brotherhood Winery where he got it. They said its no good (was a May Wine). But, they would make a deal with me. They wanted it for their Museum. They offered to send me 2 for that one. So now my dads bottle sits in their museum in upstate NY. So If I ever get there I can be thinking of my dad. My sister did get a chance to stop and took pictures to show me it's really there.
No, wine does get better with age. It is just that some wines cant age long enough to "fix" them. :sI have a Cabernat Sav. that is 11 yrs old and I am waiting for a special occasion to open it. Not sure if it will be good or not?? Welcome:b
All wines are different, some will age gracefully and some will hit their peak fast and cascade down. Its a big crap shoot and all the more reason to make enough wine to sample frequently and take notes on each. Cellaring is another area that needs to be noted, If you have stable temps around 55* with a humidity around 75% this will make aging a wine great, the farther you stray from these #'s the shorter the life will be on the wine. Corks also comes into play. A good quality cork will make a big ifference on how long the wine lasts. A very pourous cork will let the bottle breathe too much causing premature oxidation. Last but surely not least is tannins and stability of the wine itslf. High tannins in a wine, a greater abv and proper Ph and TA will make the wine much more stable. Now I did say more abv, obviously a higher proof will make the wine stay better longer but just because I said this doesnt mean you should make all your wines 18% abv as it will stay better longer but most of them wont be any good at this abv anyway!!!!!!!!

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