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Winemaking Talk - Winemaking Forum

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Feb 9, 2010
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I have to admit that bottling starting a little early this year. Months back, my niece came to me, put her head on my shoulder, looked up at me, and batted her baby-blue eyes.

"Uncle John", she said, "is there any way that you could donate some wine to my wedding?". I looked down to see her wearing a sad-puppy-dog face that simply melted away hint of resolve that I might have possessed. She knows that I can never refuse her. How in the world could anybody refuse her??

Bottom line, she only wanted 4 cases, so I made her the following offer with the following two conditions

1 - She can choose from any wine that I have that is not labeled (this protected my more valuable, commercial stock (e.g. my bottles of 1995 opus one and my collection of Stag's Leap, etc.). This include wines that have either been bottled or wines that are bulk aging.

2- She can not take an entire varietal/vintage. She must at least leave me a case.

I know what you are probably thinking right now, that I am crazy letting a youngster loose in my cellar. Perhaps you are right, but this was for the family and the spirit of generosity washed over me.

So we tasted. Most of the bottled stock she already knew, so tasting was mostly covered the wines that were bulk aging.

In the end, she chose the 2015 reserve. This was a 300l batch that I split into a 225 barrel, a 54 liter DJ, and several gallon "top off" jugs.

Not being a big fan of oak, she decided to go with the bit that was not barrel aged. The wine was velvety, had a great mouth feel, a beautiful dark red color, fantastic aroma, and was incredibly well balanced. A very good choice. YUM!



Junior Member
Jun 29, 2013
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What a softy!

That'd never happen with me! I'd tell that girl that beggars can't be choosers and if you're lucky here is what I'll give you... Yeah, right.


Senior Member
Mar 31, 2012
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Nothing like your own wine at a wedding. I made wine for my daughters wedding as favors. The guests wanted to know how many bottles they could take.
I made a couple of dessert cakes also. Guess which ones were gone first, mine or the cake that came with the package ? Bakervinyard


Junior Member
Sep 10, 2010
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Awe shucks, John I did the same for my niece a few years back. It was worth every moment! Kinda funny watching guests try to sneak out with extra bottles. I held back 6 bottles for them. Labels with their engagement picture capped it off.
Apr 19, 2009
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N. Ft. Myers , Fl
We did the same for our Neice last Thankgiving. She was having 75 at her wedding & she she thought she would need 6 bottles!!! Well I brought 3 cases and only came home with 6 bottles. Left a few for the clean up crew. It was an awesome wedding at her parents Fl farm. Roy