Wine Making With Concentrates
If you are just starting out, wine concentrates offer an easy way for you to get rolling. They come with simple, easy-to-follow directions that eliminate all of the guess-work for even the first-time winemaker. In most cases, the wine making concentrates also come with all of the additional home wine making ingredients that are called for, pre-measured and ready for use. By offering concentrated juices in this way all of the variables have been eliminated, so you have to work hard to make a mistake.
In short, wine making concentrates provide you with an easy, consistent way to make impressive grape wines with remarkable flavor, body and character. And what's more, you can create these bottles of wine for a fraction of what they would cost you at the store, as little as $4.00 a bottle. Tremendous wines that are worthy of recognition by friends and family.
So, go right ahead and dive into the interesting and rewarding hobby of home wine making. By doing so you will be joining the thousands of happy people who make and enjoy their own wines everyday with pride.
WHAT KIND OF WINES CAN I MAKE?
With wine concentrates there is a larger variety available to you than if you were to try to purchase or grow your own grapes. Currently, we offer over 200 different wine making juices from all over the world: France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Australia, Chile, Argentina, Canada and California. From Cabernet to Chianti it's all there for your choosing. It's an incredible selection that allows one to make a medley of wines that never gets tiring.
And unlike growing your own grapes, these wine concentrates are available all throughout the year. So you can make your wine whether it be April or August. These concentrates will consistently make wines that are comparable to any $10 to $15 bottle of wine you buy at the store, and in the case of our higher-end juices such as Cellar Craft Showcase Collection, they will make wines that equal the $15 to $50 range.
HOW DO YOU USE WINE MAKING CONCENTRATES?
Getting started with a batch of wine from concentrate is very quick and easy. It is simply a matter of pouring the wine concentrate into your wine making fermentation vessel, adding water and then adding the wine yeast and any other home wine making ingredients that are called for by the accompanying directions. After that it's only matter of siphoning the wine off of the sediment from time to time as directed ("racking") and adding any additional ingredients that may be called for along the way. The whole process usually takes anywhere from 30 to 45 days, from beginning to bottling, depending on the brand of wine concentrate you purchased. Your primary role in the whole process is to simply watch and wait.
WHAT COMES WITH THE CONCENTRATE?
Of the 14 different brands of wine making concentrate we offer, 11 of them come with all the ingredients you will need. All you need to do is add water. With the other 3 brands, these juices will have directions that call for wine making ingredients that you will need to buy separately.
These brands are considered "ingredient kits" because of their inclusion of everything you will need to make 6 gallons (30 bottles) of wine. They come with: the wine yeast, the nutrients, the clarifiers and such, all pre-measured in little packets. The sugars and fruit acids are already incorporated into the concentrate and have been balanced for superior flavor and character. Depending on the type of wine you are making, you may also receive flavor enhancement items such as oak powder to give a barrel-aged effect, dried elderflowers to develop the wines bouquet and dried elderberries to add body and depth to the wine. Very clear and complete directions are included, making these ingredient kits a powerfully, simple way to make incredible wines starting with your very first batch.
The other three brands do not come with any ingredients. They are simply the concentrated juice. These brands are as follows: SunCal Vineyards, Alexander Sun Country and County Fair Premium Fruit Bases. All three of these brands come with directions that explain what other ingredients you will need. You can also find this information on our web site within the description of each concentrate. The items that are called for are basically the following: Yeast Nutrient, Acid Blend, Wine Tannin, Wine Yeast, and sometimes Pectic Enzyme or Bentonite. These concentrates will also need sugar added to them as well.
WHAT EQUIPMENT WILL I NEED?
One of the things that makes wine making so attractive is that you don't have to spend a lot of money to get started, and if you already are buying wine at the store it can actually save you money. But there are some fundamental pieces of home wine making equipment you will need before making your first batch.
Obviously you will need a fermentation container for fermenting the juice. You will also need to be able to fit the container with an air-lock. This is to allow gases to escape without letting stuff back into the wine during fermentation. And, you will need some hose for siphoning your wine off of the sediment. All very simple items.
Beyond this you will also want to get a wine hydrometer. The hydrometer will allow you to determine the alcohol level of your wine, and it will help you to track the progress of your wine's fermentation. An invaluable tool!
You may also want a second fermentation container to make it easier when you are transferring the wine off the sediment. Otherwise, you can temporarily move the wine into a couple of large cooking pots, just long enough to rinse out the fermentation container and then transfer the wine back to it.
There may be other items that may pique your interest like stirring paddles, testing jars and bottle brushes, but this is the basics of what you will need to get started.
A SIMPLE WAY TO GET STARTED
As you can see the number of items required to make wine from concentrate is small. Just a few pieces of equipment, an ingredient kit and you're on your way. Because of this, it only makes sense that we put these items into a packaged group, one that allows you to get started with little hassle and little guesswork.
And, that's what we've done. We call it the Connoisseur Winemaking Kit. It is a very powerful kit in the sense that it will allow you to make wine using any one of our wine making ingredient kits, whether it be a Argentinian Malbec from Cellar Craft Showcase or a Raspberry Merlot from Niagara Mist. And what's more, it all comes at a specially reduced packaged price.
For your first batch, it includes your choice of California Connoisseur Ingredient kit. If you're not sure which one to choose, we suggest the Cabernet Sauvignon as it is one of the most popular red wine kits we offer. After that it's whatever type of wine you can imagine from our selection of over 200 ingredient kits.
We also offer a SunCal Wine Making Kit. It's the same idea only it is geared to making wine using our SunCal concentrates. It comes with the necessary equipment and your choice of SunCal Concentrate to start out with.
ADDITIONAL WINE MAKING INFO
Here are a few articles on our web site that may be of interest to you. They are more specific articles about making wine.
Corking Your Wine Bottles
Wine Bottle Storage And Temperature