Welcome!

Welcome to my wine and beer making site!

I made my first batch of wine in May 1981 and my first beer in January 1984. On these pages I record my adventures in both arenas, along with a few white papers I’ve written on these subjects.

While this site is a personal record that means more to me than anyone, I’ve recorded most of my recipes including the methods used and wine/beer making notes, so the information may be useful to others.

 

Current Updates

The west coast USA grapes arrived! I’m making a Merlot-heavy Bordeaux style blend, using 8 lugs of Merlot and 1 lug each of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec. In addition, I purchased 4 lugs of the old vine Zinfandel I made last year — this may be blended in.

Yes, I know Zinfandel is not a Bordeaux grape. However, in August Lorraine & I visited Biltmore and tasted their wines. My favorite was a French grape melange — it included grapes from both Bordeaux and Rhone … plus Zinfandel. When ordering grapes I decided to give it a shot.

The Merlot is being fermented in 2 batches of 144 lbs (4 lugs) each. This makes handling easier. Plus I’m experimenting with fermentation oak, using American in one and French in the other. Post fermentation, we’ll taste test (yes the wine will be very green) to see if the oak type matters for fermentation oak.

At this time I have 4 separate records for the red grapes. Once the wine is ready to go into the barrels (yes, I’m buying another one), the records will be collapsed into one.

Juice can be purchased in 50 gallon barrels, so it’s a group buy. One guy backed out so juice was available. Eric & I made an impulse decision and purchased 7 gallons of Sauvignon Blanc.

In addition, the Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon kits are perking along!

Last year’s second run blend will be bottled when the new wine is ready to go into the barrel.

2020 Merlot 1 updated 10/26/2020
2020 Merlot 2 updated 10/26/2020
2020 Zinfandel updated 10/26/2020
2020 Vinifera Blend updated 10/26/2020
2020 Sauvignon Blanc updated 10/26/2020
2020 Chardonnay updated 09/27/2020
2020 Cabernet Sauvignon updated 09/27/2020

 

Recent Wines

These are wines bottled in the last 12 months (or so):

2019 Second Run Malbec / Merlot / Zinfandel (barrel) updated 10/23/2020
2020 Pinot Noir updated 09/27/2020
2019 Merlot #3 updated 09/27/2020
2019 Zinfandel updated 08/22/2020
2019 Second Run Malbec / Merlot / Zinfandel (Squeezins’) updated 08/22/2020
2019 Malbec updated 06/28/2020
2020 Exotic Fruit – White Zinfandel updated 04/04/2020
2019 Merlot #2 updated 09/05/2019
2019 Merlot #1 updated 09/21/2019
2019 Vieux Chateau du Roi updated 09/06/2019

 

Navigation

Current posts are displayed on the right, with the most current ones first.

Wine Making: This menu contains lists of current and finished wines, along with various lists of everything I’ve made.

Beer Making: This menu contains lists of current and finished beers. I don’t have an overall list as I don’t make a lot of beer.

Blogs: Here’s you’ll find general blog posts (non-recipes) that talk about wine or beer making in general. There are also “white papers”, documents that describe technical points to the best of my ability.

Enjoy!