Most of us sort-of know that wine comes from fermented grapes; no matter how many bottles you’ve polished off in your life, you probably can’t say much more than that. Barrels are involved, and everything is really complicated.
As you might suspect, making wine is not something that happens by accident. The process has developed over many centuries, mostly through trial and error; rarely science. Wine in ancient times could best be described as “grape cider” or “rotting fruit juice”, while champagne was initially thought to be a ruined, undrinkable vintage.
Modern winemaking consists of dozens of steps, and it’s easy to screw up at any of them.
If you want to dip a toe into these murky waters, you’ll be glad to know that it is, in fact, perfectly possible to make your own wine at home – both red and white. You won’t, of course, turn into a master vintner without years of hard-won experience. With a little effort and a willingness to follow directions, though, you can produce something that you can serve at dinner (probably gloating fiercely all the while).
This kit will, if you do it right, provide you with around 30 bottles of something you’ll be truly proud to call your own. Fermentation takes about 3 months, after which you can bottle it and leave it to age a little more. When served, make sure it’s cooled properly – you don’t want to go through the whole process only to mess up at the moment of truth.
What you’ll not find included are the bottles, must (skins from pressed grapes), yeast, grape juice, and other chemicals you might want to use. All of these being of good quality is essential to making good wine, so take this into account when thinking about the price.
Also, you can find everything that’s included in the kit separately, while the instructions could be a little more detailed. If you’ve made wine before, you will probably not want to spend money on this package. If, however, you’re just starting out and you want a nearly one-stop solution to getting off the ground, you’re in luck. You will quite possibly end up using this equipment for years to come, and as long as you can read a recipe carefully your first batch of wine should turn out fine.