Monday, August 28, 2017

the wine with no name

I just wanted to make a basic table wine.  Nothing fancy.  Just a low key red wine made from the cheapest ingredients I could acquire.  I found what I needed at the supermarket in the frozen concentrated grape juice section at a cost of five cans for four dollars.  Eight dollars got me enough juice to ferment six gallons of wine and two bucks more got me the EC-1118 yeast.

I added a couple lbs of sugar to get things going which brings the initial cost up to a whopping 14 bucks for two cases of wine.  Not bad.

To my way of thinking, if this stuff turns out to be crap I'll just run it through the still for some cheap brandy.  Two cases of wine or a gallon and a half of brandy is all the same to me.  I changed my attitude when I tasted the finished product. 

I wanted to make something with relatively low alcohol that didn't require distilling or a huge amount of work.  Not being much of a beer drinker and hard liquor was beginning to lose its luster, my appetites were becoming increasingly whetted with thoughts of drinking regional Italian wines on the shores of Lake Garda.  I wanted wine made by generations of indigenous Italian winemakers who take pride in producing the best wines, with no intentions to export.  You know... the stuff you'll never find in a liquor store because they keep it for themselves.

Ordinarily, making wine from frozen concentrated grape juice would produce something that tastes like Welch's grape juice with a little vodka.  To avoid this, I added some heavy toast Hungarian oak for a month after it stopped fermenting.  That made all the difference.  It actually tastes like it was aging in an oak barrel for a few years, completely eliminating that disgusting kids drink flavor and imparting some rather complex flavor notes.     

Much to my surprise, everyone who tasted this wine loved it.  Even the die hard beer drinkers who won't drink anything but their brand of beer, no matter how free it is, quaffed tumblers of this stuff. 

I have to admit, for a no name wine that I never considered worthy of a seal or label, I found myself wanting to give this wine some kind of identification.

Ok, so I gave it a label but I refused to include any pictures, illustrations, or pastels to indicate anything more than what it is and what I intended it to be.  A simple no name wine.

Ya like it?    


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