Winexpert Malbec Wine Kit
Winexpert Malbec Wine Kit
Im my opinion winexpert are one of the best kits for the beginner on the market, easy to make and you can drink it within 4 weeks if you wanted to, but to get the very best i find 3 months at a minimum left in the bottle to age will give you a fantastic wine, i am going to run through the process of making this wine form the supplied kit form start to finish, to show you the beginner just how easy it really is. this is DIY at its finest……
This wine kit is available at most online homebrew stores and you will find it at your local store as well and i take it you have got all the equipment you need…
- 2 x Primary Fermenters 30 litres on with a bottom tap
- Long stirring spoon
- Hydrometer and test jar
- Wine whip to fix into your battery drill
- Bung and airlock
- Star san sanitiser or équivaillent
- Thirty sanitised wine bottles with corks and corking machine
- A room in your property at a temperature range of 22 – 24 degrees
The Kit Includes
- Large bag of grape juice
- Package 2 Bentonite
- Package 3 Metabisulphite
- Package 4 Sorbate
- Package 5 Finings
- Oak Chippings
Sterilise all your equipment using Star san or equivalent. You will hear me go on about star san quite a bit on my blogs and theres a reason for this, star san in my opinion is the easiest not the cheapest but the easiest and i have never had any infections in my brewing beer and wine using it so the proof is in the pudding so to speak, give it a go, here is a short video. just to add star san does go along way you don’t use much.
Add 2 ltrs of hot water to the bottom of your fermenter and sprinkle package 2 Bentonite and mix for a few minutes making sure its completely devolved. So what does Bentonite do ? well bentonite is an impure type of clay, formed from the weathering of volcanic ash. It has a negative electrostatic charge, meaning it attracts other particles to bond to it. Used in wine, bentonite acts as a clarifying agent, taking out suspended particles in your wine.
Open the grape juice bag and carefully pour the liquid into your fermenter with the bentonite solution and rinse out the bag with hot water, I always give this a good mix up at this stage then add the water. Top the fermenter up to the 23 ltr mark with cold water, I have experimented with tap water, bottled water and cant say I’ve noticed any difference, i suppose it all depends how good a quality your tap water is ? if you have any doubts on your tap water then go with bottled.
The instructions tell you that the 23 ltrs is critical to the result of the finished wine so make sure you correctly mark the 23 litres on your fermenter don’t rely on the manufactures markings there alway slightly off, i have filled my fermenters up with a kitchen jug to get this spot on then just mark your fermenter with a marker pen.
Using your electric whisk stir the wine hard for 30 seconds or so, draw off some of the juice solution and use your hydrometer your looking for 1.080 to 1.097, now add the oak powder and stir again, so why all the stirring, all your doing is making sure the grape juice is totally mixed with the water you have just added.
Before adding the yeast you need to record the temperature of the juice in your fermenter you need a temperature of around 22 to 24 degrees, if you don’t have this put the lid on with the filled air lock and put it somewhere to get the temperature correct. This was my first reading and was to low, I put the wine solution into a warm area until i got 22 degrees then added the yeast.
You can now sprinkle the yeast into the fermenter but don’t stir it in, replace the lid and airlock and put the fermenter in a room and try and maintain a temperature of 22 to 24 degrees or if like me and you made a brew fridge set the temperature to 23 degrees and place inside. before i made a brew fridge my wine went into my house and yes the temperature did fluctuate outside the said temperature but i have to say my wine still turned out ok but looking back then and now i am convinced my wine is slightly better now i can keep the temperature constant. Please don’t let this put you off some of my friends don’t have brew fridges and brew some great wines.
You now need to leave the wine to ferment for at least 7 days and I find 10 days is better. ok just to note i have been on holiday for 3 weeks and left the wine and its made no difference at all, in fact on the clearing stage i have forgot about some wines and left it a month and its turned out fantastic.
After 10 days were into secondary fermentation so take another sample of your now wine and check the specific gravity with your hydrometer, you are looking for a reading of 1.010 or less if its above this reading leave it for another few days and check the reading again this will not harm the wine at all. sanitise your second fermentation bucket and syphon, you now need to syphon the wine into your clean bucket leaving behind the thickest sediment layer, put your lid back on re attach the air lock and leave it for another 10 days……….
Take another sample of your wine and test the gravity again your now looking for 0.996 if its higher than this leave the wine for a few days and check again, ok you now have wine with a specific gravity (hydrometer reading of 0.996 or lower, great we are now into the clearing process.
Do not syphon the wine again at this stage, the fermentation process produces alcohol and co2 gas its the co2 gas we now need to get rid of (degassing) this is how we do that, your going to need a drill mounted stirring devise whip the wine hard for 5 minutes at least the longer the better, now devolve Package 3 Metabisulphite and Package 4 Sorbate in a little cool water and add to your wine now whip the win again for 5 minutes stirring up all the yeast sediment from the bottom. Watch this excellent short video on wine de gassing.
Next cut the corner of package 5 Chitosan and pour into your wine and again you need to whip it for 5 minutes with your drill mounted devise, this de gassing process is very important, if its not done properly it may not clear so give it a good blasting with your drill whip.
Now replace the lid and air lock at 22 to 24 degrees and leave it for 14 days to clear.
After 2 weeks or so your wine should be clear and your now ready to bottle. i would recommend to syphon the wine into another bucket with a tap at the bottom you can then fit a bottling wand which makes bottling your wind a breeze, i will show you in more detail in another post the best way to do this and also if you want to now filter your wine to make it nice and polished, there is much talk about filtering wine some say its not good but I always filter mine and have not had any problems and find the wine to be excellent quality, any questions fire away. as i said above i have forgot about a few of my wines at this stage and have left it 8 weeks before i have bottled it and its turned out fantastic so don’t worry to much.
I am not going to wine on about how good this wine is because each to their own, if you have the will power to leave it in the bottle for 6 months you will be amazed at the quality.