Problem or age longer?

My husband and I attempted our first wine kit back in June. We did a Selection Original Cabernet Sauvignon /Merlot. We bottled it in October. Two weeks ago we opened out first bottle. It was very disappointing to say the least…kind of watery with a weird taste to it…kind of hard to describe. This past weekend we decided to try out another bottle. This time it was slightly better. Is this a case of aging or did we mess up the entire thing?! I’m pretty bummed about this so far…

Not to worry. The basic aging time for Selection reds is 6 months in the bottle. Some varietals can be ready sooner, but some can take longer as well. The Cab/Merlot I find takes a good 8.

To me, this wine is all about mouthfeel. Flavor profile can be very earthy, so don’t expect a fruit forward wine - there still should be a little of the merlot coming through at some point though.

I usually describe green wines as having a hole in the middle where the flavor should be. This is the watery nature you are describing. The hole will fill itself in.

This wine will definately improve a lot. Whether you like the end result will tend to be a matter of taste. Of the Selection series, this is one of my favorite reds because it is very unique in taste and texture.

I can’t comment on the weird factor without tasting it myself, or getting a better description. My advice is to wait it out. Maybe try another bottle in 2 months and see how it goes.

Check back in and let us know how it turns out.

Thanks so much for your insight!! This was our first attempt and I feel much better now. You were dead on with the way you described the taste. We will let them sit until mid summer and then try another one out. I will be sure to report back the results. Thanks again.

I realize this topic is from a year ago but I just wanted to let you know the red wine suggestions worked out great! Everybody loves it! Thanks for the help.

Now I was wondering about doing a white wine. Any recommendations? We usually drink Pinot or Reisling. We keep our house on the cool side in the winter so we will probably have to wait until April or so but I just wanted to get a start on possibilities and how long it might take to age.

Thanks for the help.

I totally remember this thread. Glad to hear you ended up happy with the wine.

For your white wine, there will be some good choices available, and you won’t have to worry as much about aging times. Most whites are ready to go within a few months of bottling - some even sooner. Down side is their shelf life is usually more limited.

1)From the two grapes you mention I am assuming a dry (and somewhat acidic) wine? Though both Riesling and Pinot Grigio can go off-dry.

2)Are you averse to a little sweetness?

3)I am assuming fairly clean - ie no oaking?

  1. Is this primarily a food wine, or a sipping wine? Both?

Hey. Thanks for responding. A little sweetness is fine. I don’t think we are into too much oaky flavor at this point.

Also, I would say we would be sipping and drinking with food. Thanks for the help.

  1. LE series whites are always a strong bet. Thjs year there is a Riesling (off-dry), and a Trio Blanca with Chardonnay/Chenin Blanc/ Muscat I think.

Both should be great.

  1. You can go with pretty much anything from the Selection series and get great results. They have a dry Riesling / Viognier / Gewurztraminer(off-dry).

I always like to point people to the Symphony where I can. Like the Cab/Merlot in the red, it is one of the standouts of the selection series, and may present something a little different.

It is dry, but has a nice fruit to the nose, so some people confuse it as off-dry. It has one of the more intereststing aging profiles for the series. Starts off with fairly standard fruit - pear / apple / slight peach - but after several months of aging, begins to show more tropical notes of melon and mango.

It works great as a sipping wine (especially in the summer) but also works well with food. It’s flavor profile allows it to go with mild/medium spicy food (asian / mexican) but because it is actually dry, it is not limited to that. Pretty much goes with anything you would pair with white wine.

If you chose this one, you would notice the fantastic aroma of the juice on day one when you pour into a fermenter.

Thanks for your input. How long would you say one of these should be aged in the bottle before trying it out?

Whites are a whole different thing than reds. I would have no issues popping one open the day you bottle it. Just expect it to seem a little flavorless and maybe a tuch acidic.

Most selection whites I would recomend 1-3 months aging before starting in. Some like the Viognier really come out flat at first and stand to improve. A few like the Gewurtz and the Australian Chardonnay are very drinkable young (but they will still improve)

With the Symphony you can’t go wrong with a month in the bottle. Then making sure you have half the batch cross the 4-6 month mark to really see the tropical notes come out.

That being said, there is very little value “aging” this wine past the a year or two. So once a white wine hits its peak, don’t be shy with it. You can always make more.

GREAT! Thanks so much for the help. I will report back when we get to drinking it! :slight_smile: