2008 Gewurztraminer

December 2008I was going to buy a “fun wine” kit, probably a Green Apple/Riesling, but this one caught my eye … I have hopes that it will have decent Gewurztraminer characteristics.


Kit Vino del Vida Wine Gewurztraminer Kit
Bentonite yes
Yeast Lalvin EC-1118
Sulfite yes
Sorbate yes
Kieselsol yes
Chitosan yes


Once again making a valiant attempt to follow the directions! Used mostly purchased filtered water, but didn’t have quite enough, had to add a gallon of tap water.

Dissolved bentonite in 1 gallon water in fermenter, using powered stirring rod to mix.

Added juice/concentrate and topped up to 6 gallons, again mixing well.

Rehydrated the yeast with sugar and added it. Directions say to sprinkle it on top and not stir it in … but I get a fast result hydrating with a bit of sugar.

SG 1.080
Racked the wine, transferring it to a carboy and gallon jug. Added sulphite, potassium sorbate, sweetening packet, kieselsol, and chitosan — following directions for order of addition and stirring time. 12/25/2008
SG 1.005
After ignoring the wine for 11 months, bottled it. 11/11/2009
SG 1.005


Yield 27 bottles
Alcohol 10.2%
Residual Sugar 1.3%
11/11/2009 Tastes ok, but doesn’t have any distinctive gewürztraminer character. I’ve noticed that the Vino del Vida kits make decent table wines, but aren’t the ones to buy if a specific varietal character is desired. This doesn’t mean they aren’t worth making, but the maker has to have the correct desire and expectations to match the kit.
12/17/2010 Finished the last bottle. This made a good table wine with just a hint of gewürztraminer character. While I would have liked more, it wasn’t to be. Next time I want Gewürztraminer I’ll buy a better grade of kit. Best to aim for just a neutral table wine with Vino del Vida.