Using fruit base with bad results

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ljpitre

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I am using Vintner's Best® Raspberry Fruit Wine Base 128 oz., Rasberry & Conchord.
I've made 2 batches so far. each with 1 gallon of the base and added 4.5 gallons of water.

Both batches seem to turn out bad. very acid taste, very low fruity.

I do not understand why. Please advise.
 

Rice_Guy

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I use Vinters Harvest for adding extra flavor notes to a white grape fermentation base (N0 WATER)
ex apricot purée; ingredient puréed apricot, my numbers pH 3.87/ TA 1.99% (the can says pH 2.8-3.4/ 1.036-1.048)
ex grapefruit purée; ingredient = water & grapefruit concentrate, my numbers pH 3.26/ TA / grav 1.076 (the can says pH 3.0-3.4/ grav 1.020-1.060)

If your raspberry base is similar it could be run at 100% canned juice. IF it is a concentrate with a high gravity try diluting into a white grape or apple juice. This will increase the fruity notes.
Next guideline, Do you have pH and TA? A guide line is to dilute the TA to be between 0.50-0.70%. Water has no TA, TA is proportional to the acidic flavor. We can balance the acid by adding sugar (with sorbate).
 

Jim Welch

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I am using Vintner's Best® Raspberry Fruit Wine Base 128 oz., Rasberry & Conchord.
I've made 2 batches so far. each with 1 gallon of the base and added 4.5 gallons of water.

Both batches seem to turn out bad. very acid taste, very low fruity.

I do not understand why. Please advise.
I’ve not used that brand but have used Vintners Harvest base which comes in a large can. Using one of these cans to make 3 gallons of fruit wine and it makes a pretty decent country wine.
I don’t have any advice for this batch but if you decide to go back to the drawing board and try it again I’d suggest this V. Harvest brand.
 

Jovimaple

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Vintner's Best is not pure fruit - it's a fruit wine base with apple and other (non-grape) fruit flavor. It comes in gallon jugs that are meant to be made into 5 gallons of must.

Based on what I read from others who had used it, I shorted the water (approx 4 to 4.5 gallons total including both the water and the jug contents, instead of the 5 the directions call for) when I made some black raspberry and also some strawberry. They turned out pretty good; the strawberry was a fuller wine than the black raspberry, I think. I also have a full jug of apple wine base to use sometime.

After I bought them, I read the label and realized they were a base with the particular fruit flavoring; I thought I was buying fruit concentrate (such as Vintner's Harvest). I think you can get a good wine, but you might have to tweak the process a bit, such as shorting the water and/or adding oak cubes when aging, etc. The interesting thing is the label says it will ferment to 1.000 and they were right - that's all the lower it would go.
 

Joecmk

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I used the Vinters Best Peach wine base and I am not particularly happy with the way it came out. Smelt great while it was fermenting but the taste is so-so. So now I have 5 gallons of this aging in my carboy and not sure what to do with it. I did mix some with a Chardonnay that I made as well. Letting that sit for a while and taste in a few months.
 

Retired teacher

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I am using Vintner's Best® Raspberry Fruit Wine Base 128 oz., Rasberry & Conchord.
I've made 2 batches so far. each with 1 gallon of the base and added 4.5 gallons of water.

Both batches seem to turn out bad. very acid taste, very low fruity.

I do not understand why. Please advise.
The directions on Vintner’s Best could be better. After making some adjustments I have turned out some pretty good batches. First, don’t attach the lid with airlock at the beginning - just cover with a cloth. After racking to a carboy let it sit for 3 or 4 weeks. Rack again and don’t get in a hurry. I know that it is supposed to be a fairly quick turnaround, but In my experience, the longer it ages in the carboy, the better the flavor.
 

Scooter68

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So once again - The customer learns the hard way the difference between Vintner's Best (VB) and Vintner's Harvest (VH).

To be fair IF you know what you are getting there should be no issue, but; sadly folks are occasionally too trusting. That being said, I've never heard that anyone was thrilled with a 5 gallon batch using VH either. But VH does give both 3 gallon and 5 gallon recipes on the label.

Keep in mind that acidity is normally under the home wine makers control assuming that proper pH readings are done and adjustments made as needed to get into what most consider the optimal range for Fruit wines (pH of 3.4 to 3.6)
As to flavor, most fruit wines end up less than real fruity flavorful until a little bit of back-sweetening is done. That doesn't mean making a sweet wine or even semi-sweet, just slowly back-sweeten until you start to notice the fruit flavor coming forward. If anything though stop early unless you like/want a semi-sweet wine.
I will also add that I've made one batch of Red Raspberry wine from a VH can (3 gallon batch) and was not impressed, but; now that the wine has aged 2-3 years it's better, just not one of my favorites. Sad too because it's beautiful deep rose color in the glass and bottle.

One final point - I know we are into the off season but it seems more difficult to fine the full spectrum of the Vintner's Harvest wine bases lately (lat 18-240 months) Anyone have any insight into that? Sadly while there are other companies making 100% single variety fruit bases./concentrates, most are sold mostly in larger quantities than I would choose.
 
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