Showcase or International kits & suggestions?

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ringmany

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Hi everyone,

Been brewing wine for little over a year, variety of kits, usually Kenridge classic, California Connoisseur, Beaverdale etc. Now I'm looking at the premium stuff such as:

Kenridge Showcase
Eclipse
Selection

I'm wondering if you have any suggestions for one of the kits or a recommendation? Most of my family / friends drink red wines and I'm looking for something amazing that's going to blow them away.

I was checking previous charts for the top kits:

https://winemakermag.com/technique/683-the-top-100-kits

The top one being: Vineco KenRidge Showcase Italian Amarone. Which I believe is this:

https://www.home-brew-online.com/wine-kits-c24/kenridge-showcase-16l-italian-amarone-style-p1227

Another one which looks interesting is a Cabernet Sauvignon which is on offer:

https://www.brewuk.co.uk/selection-californian-cabernet-sauvignon.html

The top charts are a few years old, so maybe there's been more up to date kits since then. Ideally I'd prefer the kits which are around £60-70, whereas the Eclipse is around £120, so maybe a bit out of the budget unless it's the best kit in the world.

I've also hear good things about Italian Brunello kits, but I can't find any here in the UK.

No of my family have tried these, so I'm uncertain what to expect, although the forums recommend it highly. Leave it to mature for a year or two. Some of the forums were suggesting buying kits which contain the grape skin, but I'm a little uncertain how to find these ones, as most I've seen for the suggestions don't specify adding skins.

Does anyone have any suggestions for their favourite or a recommendation for which kit for a spectacular red wine?

Thank you.
 

Brian55

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Hi everyone,

Been brewing wine for little over a year, variety of kits, usually Kenridge classic, California Connoisseur, Beaverdale etc. Now I'm looking at the premium stuff such as:

Kenridge Showcase
Eclipse
Selection

I'm wondering if you have any suggestions for one of the kits or a recommendation? Most of my family / friends drink red wines and I'm looking for something amazing that's going to blow them away.

I was checking previous charts for the top kits:

https://winemakermag.com/technique/683-the-top-100-kits

The top one being: Vineco KenRidge Showcase Italian Amarone. Which I believe is this:

https://www.home-brew-online.com/wine-kits-c24/kenridge-showcase-16l-italian-amarone-style-p1227

Another one which looks interesting is a Cabernet Sauvignon which is on offer:

https://www.brewuk.co.uk/selection-californian-cabernet-sauvignon.html

The top charts are a few years old, so maybe there's been more up to date kits since then. Ideally I'd prefer the kits which are around £60-70, whereas the Eclipse is around £120, so maybe a bit out of the budget unless it's the best kit in the world.

I've also hear good things about Italian Brunello kits, but I can't find any here in the UK.

No of my family have tried these, so I'm uncertain what to expect, although the forums recommend it highly. Leave it to mature for a year or two. Some of the forums were suggesting buying kits which contain the grape skin, but I'm a little uncertain how to find these ones, as most I've seen for the suggestions don't specify adding skins.

Does anyone have any suggestions for their favourite or a recommendation for which kit for a spectacular red wine?

Thank you.
Not likely to get anything "amazing that's going to blow people away", or "spectacular" from a kit. There are some very good kits, but none fitting those descriptors. Showcase Amarone and Walla Walla Cab/Merlot are two that are consistently decent. Eclipse cab, merlot, shiraz and barolo are all consistently decent as well.
 

jbo_c

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The Eclipse kits will have grape skins for the reds unless there’s something I don’t know(entirely possible). I haven’t had great success with Winexpert kits in the past, though it has been a while and I’ve never made an Eclipse kit, so that may not be fair.

I’ve had the best luck with Cellar Craft, though you didn’t mention, so I’m assume they aren’t readily available.

Just based on market share and reports, I’d say your best bet is In the Eclipse series.

Jbo
 

ringmany

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Hi,

Cheers for the suggestions. Not familiar with Cellar Craft, I'll check it out.

Yeah I guess it's a little too much to expect something mind blowing, but I want to create things which are fairly unique or something lovely that you wouldn't normally be able to buy in your local shop. So rather than making standard red wines, I'd try adding extra fruits inside, or making fruit wines with multiple berries and fruit juices. My most recent one is a elderberry, apricot, raspberry and rose petal wine. So I want to experiment more, add a little twist so it isn't a standard kit, but I've heard excellent reviews from these expensive kits, so I was curious if they even need anything extra adding or if they're as good as everyone says.
 

Brian55

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Hi,

Cheers for the suggestions. Not familiar with Cellar Craft, I'll check it out.

Yeah I guess it's a little too much to expect something mind blowing, but I want to create things which are fairly unique or something lovely that you wouldn't normally be able to buy in your local shop. So rather than making standard red wines, I'd try adding extra fruits inside, or making fruit wines with multiple berries and fruit juices. My most recent one is a elderberry, apricot, raspberry and rose petal wine. So I want to experiment more, add a little twist so it isn't a standard kit, but I've heard excellent reviews from these expensive kits, so I was curious if they even need anything extra adding or if they're as good as everyone says.
Cellar Craft and Kenridge are the same.
 

ringmany

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Cellar Craft and Kenridge are the same.
Is these much of a difference between the two?

Cellar Craft Show Case - Amarone Style 18L
Kenridge Showcase 16L - Italian Amarone Style

Other than the Cellar once is £125 and the Kenridge one is £70. Is it really worth the extra £55?
 
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Brian55

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Is these much of a difference between the two?

Cellar Craft Show Case - Amarone Style 18L
Kenridge Showcase 16L - Italian Amarone Style

Other than the Cellar once is £125 and the Kenridge one is £70. Is it really both the extra £55?
They're the same company, marketing to different areas. Cellar Craft is what's available here in the USSA. I've never seen a Kenridge kit.
 

ringmany

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Unfortunately, they don't appear to stock those kits here in the UK.

If I was to make one of the Amarone kits, what do you think I could add to improve it further? I've heard rumour of adding raisins, additional juice and raspberries sometimes to improve flavour.
 

ras2018

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If you are buying something high end with a grape skin pack I would make minimal adjustments. Maybe some additional tannin and some extra oak to age it on. I would also swap out the yeast for BM 4x4 for an amarone.
 

ringmany

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Ok, so I wanted to get a kit with grape skins, but I'm struggling to find any from the UK. I've got the following selection:

Kenridge Showcase 16L - Italian Amarone Style
Cellar Craft Show Case - Amarone Style 18L with skins (Can't find in UK)
Atmosphere - Amarone Style Wine Kit

Unfortunately, I can't seem to find any kits that have skins which are in UK. Nothing from Kenridge / CC / WineXpert / Eclipse.
 

Brian55

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Ok, so I wanted to get a kit with grape skins, but I'm struggling to find any from the UK. I've got the following selection:

Kenridge Showcase 16L - Italian Amarone Style
Cellar Craft Show Case - Amarone Style 18L with skins (Can't find in UK)
Atmosphere - Amarone Style Wine Kit

Unfortunately, I can't seem to find any kits that have skins which are in UK. Nothing from Kenridge / CC / WineXpert / Eclipse.
Sounds like reason enough to relocate.
 

ras2018

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I have added raisins to an amarone without skins. I would proceed that route if you use a kit without skins. Just make sure they are just raisins without all the other added chemicals. Pretty sure the Sunmaid brand is fine.
 

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