WineXpert What is your longest aged kit wine in your cellar?

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Boatboy24

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I still have one bottle from my 3rd kit - started 5/13/2012. I'm afraid to drink it. LOL!

It was a Vino Italiano (aka: Amazon, El Cheapo) Cabernet Sauvignon. $40, LOL! Just went back through my notes and saw that I added 12oz of raisins, 6.5oz of dried blueberries and a sliced banana into the primary. Maybe I'll go home and crack that bad boy open tonight. If I'm never heard from again, you know why.
 

crushday

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I still have one bottle from my 3rd kit - started 5/13/2012. I'm afraid to drink it. LOL!

It was a Vino Italiano (aka: Amazon, El Cheapo) Cabernet Sauvignon. $40, LOL! Just went back through my notes and saw that I added 12oz of raisins, 6.5oz of dried blueberries and a sliced banana into the primary. Maybe I'll go home and crack that bad boy open tonight. If I'm never heard from again, you know why.
If we don't see any WMT activity from you by tomorrow we'll send in a wellness check...lol
 

dmguptill

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Mine is almost 3 years and am not impressed. Guess it’s not going to turn any corners!
I keep seeing people say this about the eclipse Lodi cab...Too bad that even after several years it's still kinda meh

Edit: now that I go back and reread the OP, maybe it just needs a few more years ;)
 

crushday

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Oldest here in the Berry Basements is a Malmsey Maderia, a "Project Wine Cellar" kit from when Wine Art was still around, fhere is one of three remaining bottles. From 1975.
Are you planning opening one of those three?
 

Vinobeau

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My second, and last, kit was a Gamay Beaujolais from 1975 - bottled on 1/2/1976. It was a 5 gallon kit and it was the first wine to be aged in my brand new oak barrel. Well, it turned out too oaky and tart; but I couldn't throw it out! I thought that it might mellow out with bottle ageing, but alas - no. I've used some bottles thru the years - cooking, salad dressings, mixing with other wines,etc. I still have 2 bottles!!
My first kit, and my first attempt at winemaking, was a 2 1/2 gallon Sears Vino kit that my fiancee gave for Christmas in 1972. I've saved the box and the $12.00 price tag is still on it.
 

David219

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Funny how this thread somehow resurrected. I haven’t been around much. It was striking to see my name on the thread list!

My winemaking has slowed to just a couple kits a year. I have a WE Stag’s Leap Merlot in my neutral Vadai barrel and two kits on deck (WE Selection Amarone and Passport Two Roads Red). Both of which I’ve had sitting around for enough time I’ll need to get fresh yeast.

I still have one bottle of that 2011 Lodi Cab and the Shiraz/Viognier and Primitivo I had in my cellar when I first posted this. I have 5 bottles of WE Barolo and CC Red Mountain Cab from 2014 that I’m intrigued to try but don’t want to lose. You can’t have your cake and eat it, too, it seems...

Hope you all are well and enjoy a prosperous, happy 2019. May the wines you make this year all age well.
 

crushday

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My second, and last, kit was a Gamay Beaujolais from 1975 - bottled on 1/2/1976. It was a 5 gallon kit and it was the first wine to be aged in my brand new oak barrel. Well, it turned out too oaky and tart; but I couldn't throw it out! I thought that it might mellow out with bottle ageing, but alas - no. I've used some bottles thru the years - cooking, salad dressings, mixing with other wines,etc. I still have 2 bottles!!
My first kit, and my first attempt at winemaking, was a 2 1/2 gallon Sears Vino kit that my fiancee gave for Christmas in 1972. I've saved the box and the $12.00 price tag is still on it.
Hey, just for curiosity sake, how long did you age in your new barrel? I understand it was 40+ years ago but if you can remember or have notes...
 

David219

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It was a process. I had to watch it closely the first few batches...a new barrel will impart a ton of oak very quickly. Within weeks.

My first kit was only in the barrel for 3 weeks, and was way too “oaky” for my taste. The second kit was able to barrel for 6 weeks, the third for 8 weeks. I based these times by estimates from other winemakers on breaking in a barrel and by taste.

The fourth and fifth kits stayed in 3 months. The sixth kit four.

My barrel has seen 17 kits. Most I kept in for around four months. That seemed to be a safe sweet spot from what people on this forum related and other things I read.

The last two kits remained in longer. Not necessarily by design. I just have slowed down. The longest time was 9 months for the last batch.

I topped things up regularly and use a Vinmetrica to test SO2 levels.

I can’t say I remember at what point the barrel seemed to be neutral, but it I seem to recall it being shortly after a kit or two had been through the 4 month cycle. So maybe 18 months and 6 or seven kits?

And it wasn’t 40+ years ago, although it sometimes feels that way. :)
 

crushday

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And it wasn’t 40+ years ago, although it sometimes feels that way. :)
Thanks for all the info. I thought you mentioned the kit that barrel aged too long was from 1976... I'm very interested in new barrel aging timelines. I have recently made the investment in several barrels, 5 of which are 6.1 gallons. I have my first wine in them and it's been three months now. I tasted the wine today and it's all very good and not oaky to me at all. I was planning on going six months in this size barrel per batch. As they drift into neutrality, I'll insert oak spirals...
 

Chris Pittock

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My current stash is all under a year old, the oldest being about 3 months. I did once find a bottle of CWE Black Cherry at the back of my cellar that I made in 1996, which at that time was 13 years old. I was apprehensive of drinking it, but when I did it had a wonderful rich syrupy texture with a strong cherry flavour. It was very much like a good Tawny Port. I have tried to replicate this since, but as yet I haven't managed such a good flavour.
 
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