Discussion in 'Kit Winemaking' started by facn1989, Oct 23, 2017.
I see people age their wines 2-3 years at most. Anyone ever age it 5 or 7 years?
I have a few bottles of RJS Italian Super Tuscan. Made on April 2013.
I think consumption at 2-3 years is more a factor of eager drinking than a limitation on the aging of kits. Depending upon tweaks you do with a kit you may or may not get as much continued improvement with age over 3 years like you do with some commercial reds that need that long to bring everything together. My oldest batch will turn 3 on November 2d. I've got 11 bottles left. It has improved dramatically over the last 18 months, and I hope to have some left at 4 years to know for myself how it continues to evolve.
But given the use of quality corks and good storage conditions there's no early 'drink by' date on kit wines.
I have an Amarone that has made it 5 years and several others nearing 4 years. Oh, and also a Brunello at 5 years waiting for it to become drinkable. (a real musty taste reminds me of moldy oak that is gradually fading). Much depends on the condition of your storage area.
5 years for the Brunello?!?! That was my first batch a couple of months ago I was expecting it to be good at around 2 years. I will be aging in a wine fridge at 55F. I heard the Brunello was very good, but no one said it they waited much for it to become drinkable.
I made 3 kits of Merlot for my daughters wedding about 10 years ago. I think that it was Cellar Craft, and it had a skins pack, which wasn't that common at the time. I only had about 8 months to age it before the bells rang, and it turned out pretty good, but nothing special. Like a decent table wine. This had been my experience up to this point with reds. I just felt that it wasn't worth the effort making reds, and resorted to only making a couple of Chard batches every year. Time past, we moved and I forgot about a case of the Merlot left over from the wedding. Of note, is that the case was properly stored in a cool cellar, and I used longer, natural corks. I was searching for empty bottles a couple of years ago and came across the lost case. It was 8 years old at that point. Quite pleased with my find, we opened a bottle and WOW! It had a nose, and was very good. I would put it in the $30-$40 range of commercial wines. Needless to say, I have resumed making reds, almost exclusively kits with skins, and have been more that pleased with the results, provided that I give them some age. As others have said, I believe the storage conditions are very important. This experience has renewed my interest in the hobby, and I am busy trying to fill my cave with home made wine (predominately from kits).
Amazing! 8 years old! Maybe I'll save a bottle or 2 from every batch and stash and forget
That's awesome to hear how much you enjoyed that Merlot. So many variables involved with it though. Because just last week we cracked open a bottle of kit Merlot that was 10 yrs old given to my dad by a friend.
Don't know which kit it was. And was stored in the basement that's about 55°-60° in the winter but around 72°-75° during summer.
This one had passed its peak. We drank it. It wasn't horrible or anything. The first couple sips were rough. But still very much a drinkable wine at 10 yrs.
Though if there was another bottle I can't see myself ever popping the cork unless I was in dire need of a drink.
I have an RJS Old Vin Zin that is 4 yrs. old. I have 3 bottles left so will open at the 4, 5 & 6 yr. mark.
I keep a few bottles from every kit I make (have only made 5 kits) so that I can try them every year from 4 on.
I have a few bottles from the Summer of 2009 including a bottle of CC Showcase Red Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon and a bottle of CC Showcase Cabernet-Merlot. They have been stored in a cool environment on their sides and I have no doubt that they are still great condition. Someday I suppose I need to open one of them.
Although not from kits I've been saving 1-2 bottles from every batch for the past 10-12 years. I keep them in my private cellar......boxes in my basement. I have 30 plus stashed.
We have a "long term" 42 bottle chiller that I don't have a key too. Each Chrisrmas we have a bottle of CC Amarone, last year it was 8 yrs old! Awesome! We also have 5-7 year old wines that we open for birthdays etc. Kits age. Roy
What is the age limit for kits?
We started this hobby back in 2011. We're only now seeing some of our red inventory approach the 5 year mark. Yes, we made one of the most common rookie mistakes. We started opening them way too soon back then, and not saving any long term. Two years is where they typically start to get good, three and four is better, I'm looking forward to seeing how they are at 5 years.
To be honest, if I have wine much over 2 years old its because I lost them in the shuffle. I'm 70 years old and love sharing my wine, but I want to drink some of it
Almost everything I buy has a lifetime guarantee!
let me know when you are planning to open the Cab Merlot. I could use a road trip
This wine has lasted this long only because of the funky taste it has had from the start. I put it in an out of the way place to see if the funk would age out. If not for that, it would have been a distant memory by now. So a Brunello doesn't necessarily need that much time (unless it tastes like dirty sweat socks to start)
I assume you are asking about red wines. Depends upon the kit. Cheaper kits 2-5 years. I'm guessing the top of the line kits 5-10 years. 10+ for the full body reds.
Cork makes a big difference. If you are going to age more than 2 years, make sure you use a high quality #9 cork. You need a tight seal.
Yes I was mostly thinking kits. I just did my first batch from juice buckets but all kits before that.
I finally have enough inventory to start answering the question, "What's that wine taste like at 2 or 3 years?" My oldest bottle of kit wine will be 3 years old this winter, I think. Since I only do top-of-the-line kits, I'm hoping to test the theory of keeping wines for 5 - 10 years.
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