Intro: First Kit

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Feb 11, 2010
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Intro's first.
Hello everyone, I'm Drew. I have a handfull of friends that have been brewing beer for years and I finally caught the bug. However, unlike my friends, my lovely wife and I are also wine drinkers so I have aspirations of not only homebrewing beer but dabling in the wine side of things as well.

First Kit:
I picked up my wares yesterday afternoon and thought I would start with a wine kit. I picked up Wine Expert's California Trinity Red. My thought process was that since I'm brand new to all things homebrewed I would just get a kit that sounded good and follow the instructions to the T and get used to the process before attempting to play with the recipes and all that jazz. I plan on bottle aging this batch to free up my buckets to start a beer earler. My goal is to start the batch this afternoon at somepoint.

A quick initial question I have is about bottling (which I realize is a handfull of weeks down the road). After talking with the brew shop owner I wanted to get some other opinions on the "wine-on-tap" bladders. Has anyone used them instead of bottles and can give me the low down on how well it does with aging the wine? The product says "great for aging 6 months or more" but I'm always sceptical about that without feedback from people who have used the product.

At any rate, I'd love any feedback / advice on my first batch and beyond.

Drew, welcome aboard. I am not familiar with those bags but there are so many people on here I am sure someone will know. There are also a lot of great on line places that sell wine supplies that you could probably ask if you have a favorite one. Not to beat a dead horse on this forum but one place you could call and ask is Fine Vine Wines. Do a search and you will get their web address and phone listing. They will be straight forward with you and give you a thumbs up or down on the product. They are not the only game in this business but they are truley trusted by all that use them.
Welcome MisterDrew, I have never tried that wine on tap but can say that as long as you remove as much headspace before sealing it that it should be fine as it collapses upon itself after that so that there is no problem like there is with other vessels.
I am fairly new myself and have not tried them, but the bit I've heard of them they are good. Especially because you don't have to bother with bottling and if you only want one glass of wine you don't have to open a whole bottle. As wade said be extra careful to get all the air out then there is no chance of oxidation. As with everything wine make sure to sterilize before storing anything in them.
the trick with the wine on tap bags is to fill them carefully according to instructions, don't put too much wine in there, just enough. put about 8 to 8.5 bottles worth and then make sure it'll still fit right in the plastic container that holds the spigot - if it does, then take the bag and squeeze it gently until all of the air is out of the bag and wine is at the mouth, then attach the spigot and you should be good - it will keep for a very long time in good condition... as long as any commercial box wine after opening. provided no air enters the bag.
Intro's first.

I plan on bottle aging this batch to free up my buckets to start a beer earler.


Drew, it sounds like you are only using buckets. That could be a problem for your wine as it will alow to much air in after primary fermentation. Look into getting carboys for your wine to keep from oxidatio
Good Luck,
Yeah, when I went into the local brew shop I was told that buckets work just fine. I'm picking up a new bucket / carboy etc with each new batch I start for a while until I have enough to make me happy. I'll pick up a carboy next (going to do a beer batch next as stated above). Any major problems with the better bottles?
One recommendation I would make is to designate one bucket for beermaking and use it only for beer, so you can avoid getting the beer taste/smell affecting your wine. This would apply to the plastic bucket, not glass carboys. I haven't used better bottles so not sure if this applies to them.
Welcome and good luck.

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