WE 16L California Merlot Kit

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daveb50

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I started a 16L WE California Merlot Kit today. I've been away from wine making for awhile, now retired, thought I would get back in. I have not found anything about this kit here, anyone here tried it?
 

daveb50

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I'm surprised no one has tried this kit before. I used RC212 instead of the EC1118 that came with the kit. Beginning SG was 1.092
 

jgmann67

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Most folks tend towards the Eclipse StagsLeap Merlot. It’s about the same price but a premium kit with a strong record of turning into excellent wine.

The SE also lacks a skins pack.

Interested to know what tweaks you do with this one.
 

pillswoj

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Agree with Jim, I will do the 16L Selection Series for whites, but for Reds I go the Eclipse or En Primeur series, note they take around 2 years to be really good. For quick drinking reds I go with the 12L kits and a lighter style like a pinot noir.
 

daveb50

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I would have bought a skins kit, but I got a great deal on this. My next one will be with skins. Since I'm just getting back into the hobby, other than the Yeast substitute, I hadn't planned any other changes since it was a 16 liter kit. I will bulk age it six months or more, maybe some additional oak depending on taste. It came with some french oak chips that went into the primary. What type of tweaks have you done on similar kits?
 

jgmann67

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A few things to consider:

* Tannin on the front (Tannin Rouge) or back (Tannin Riche Extra) end;

* oak cubes (French or Hungarian medium or better);

* yeast swap to RC212.

If you bump your oak/Tannin, it may require more time to settle down.
 

daveb50

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I'll pick up some Hungarian oak cubes, as that is what the chips they supplied were. I may split it into two or more batches after primary completes, likely in a day or two, as it was down to 1.030 last night. That way I can tweak some, and leave some alone, for comparison. Thanks for your input.
 
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