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skiboarder72

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Vino Italiano

So I got curious and bought a couple of the Vino Italiano 4 week kits off amazon. They are really cheap, and the wine that they make is fairly cheap tasting too. I was surprised they only came with 5L of actual juice. Its nice that they come with labels, corks, and cork cover things, but I really think its better to spend your money and get a kit with at least 10L of juice (for a 6gal batch). Anyone else had this same experience?
 

cpfan

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Well sometimes cheap is cheap, and sometimes cheap is inexpensive. It can depend a lot on your tastes and budget. These days I make few 10 litre kits, mostly 16 litre, and some 18 litre.

But some time ago, I made a similar sized, inexpensive red kit. It was actually a discontinued brand from Vineco. I made it late winter or early spring, planning to make sangria that summer, and maybe even mulled wine if any was left at Christmas. Well there was none left at Christmas. Yes we made some sangria, but a neighbour in particular and some friends&family devoured it young. And no more was available cause the kit was discontinued.

Now maybe our tastes in red wine were not very well developed (mine were certainly not, I was a white wine & mist wine drinker), but it sure disappeared.

Steve
 

St Allie

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I've made a cheap red or two and tweaked them up .. you can really get a bit of mileage out of them. And they will improve if cellared a bit.. ( not the easiest thing when you are trying to get a cellar started and actually want to drink your product as well!

Allie
 

WhineMaker

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I've made a few of these kits, and have been happy with the results.. They have good reviews at amazon as well. The reds are pretty thin and could use the help of raisins etc.. The whites have been very good and the only thing I have adjusted on them are the addition of oak spirals to the Chard, and on the Muscato a little back-sweetening. Very good choice for the money, but do not expect stellar wines from them. For ~$1.50 per bottle you can't go wrong IMHO, plus it presents the perfect opportunity for experimentation..

:b
 

Green Mountains

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Has anybody tried the Cornucopia line that these guys make? It appears they are kind of like an Island Mist or Summer Breezin type of wine.
 

WhineMaker

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Has anybody tried the Cornucopia line that these guys make? It appears they are kind of like an Island Mist or Summer Breezin type of wine.

I did this kit end of last year and it came out exactly like the IM kit I did. I add sugar and 1/2 the f-pack up front to up the ABV to the 12% range.. Need to be careful with the amount of sugar because you don't want to end up with rocket fuel! (worst case scenario it will need to age a while to become more drinkable) Also, this method makes the wine a little less sweet than intended(~1.008), although you could always backsweeten a little more to bring it up to the 1.015 range.. I'll have to look back at my notes, but those are the figures that stick out in my mind right now..

I had gotten this particular kit on sale with free shipping from amazon.. I paid 45.00 to my door. Very popular early drinking wine.. Have 2 bottles left and am saving them for ourselves!! I find our friends/family scoping out our wine rack for it everytime they come over.. Lately I've been pushing some of my less popular wine on them and the funny thing is they still love it! (At least thats what they tell me)

Edit:My first IM Riesling kit I added sugar only to the primary, and the full f-pack at the end, this kit I split the f-pack but the end result was very similar.
 
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Green Mountains

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Great to hear....I'm looking into a couple of these for experimenting on.
 

Rickochet

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We have used the Chardonnay, Riesling, Blush and Moscato. We have been very pleased with them and are great to practice tweaking with increasing ABV and back sweetening. My wife likes the Moscato back sweetened with 2 cups of Splenda. I like it because she likes helping to make it AND drink it! :db
 

skiboarder72

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Well after a year on aging a chianti and reisling from these kits I do have to say I'm not impressed. They haven't noticeably improved and don't really have much character at all. The chianti especially. I would say these are OK for the white wines.

IMO I would spend the extra 15$ and start off with an RJS Grand Cru level, unless you plan on using this as a base for a fruit wine or really modifying it to get some sort of flavor out of it.
 

askins3097

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I just bottled up a riesling kit from this brand. For the money its hard to beat. This is the only kit I ever tried from them. I don't think I would try anything like a Merlot or Cabernet, but for a already lighter wine like riesling , its not bad at all. The only thing I added to it was a 5th of Yellow Tail riesling to top it off after I cleared and racked it. If anything its the perfect wine to give to people while keeping the good stuff for yourself. Haha.
 

Bompa

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I did one of their Chardonnay kits, purchased on Amazon for $41 and change. Rather than follow the directions and make 6 gallons, I thought it better to aim for a starting SG of 1.090 without added sugar. I placed the concentrate in a primary and filled with water to the 4 gallon mark. I then checked SG after adding each quart of water and attained 1.090 at the 4 3/4 gallon mark. It fermented pretty dry (ending at .994) and I'm pleased with how it turned out. If I do another one I will ditch the yeast that came with the kit in favor of D47 and try to encourage more malo-lactic fermentation; I might also oak it up a little. Or maybe not. It's pretty good the way it is and I don't know that I want it to be just like every other Chardonnay out there. And oh yeah, it was still only $1.64 a bottle, including the corks, capsules, and labels.
 
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