Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Homemade German White Wine Tasting

The process that went into making this WinExpert kit (Selection Original: Liebfraumilch Style) was pretty simple compared to brewing a beer: all it required was opening packages, stirring, racking etc...  Not much that you can screw up if you read the instructions.  The real problem I'm having is what to do with 25 bottles of wine.  I've tried everything I can think of: I cooked mussels, made vinegar, gave it away to friends, christened ships and I still have 20 bottles left.  All that is left now is to drink some of it.  I've heard that most white wines are supposed to be drank relatively fresh, so I didn't want to wait too long to post a tasting of this batch.

I went all out for my first wine, delabeled bottles, corks etc...Liebfraumilch Style Wine

Appearance – Clear pale yellow, the bentonite and isinglass certainly did their job removing haze admirably. A swirl reveals some thin legs running down the sides of the glass.

Smell – Big fruity nose, tropical, apricot, and fresh white grape juice. Slight soapiness, not sure if it is from the yeast or maybe the sulfites.

Taste – Slight grapey sweetness. Fermented beer so rarely has any simple sugars that this wine tastes sweet even though the FG is 1.004 (I'm glad I held back some of the back-sweetening "F-pack"). The alcohol is rather soft for being around 12%, but it makes its presence known with a slight warming on the back of the throat.

Mouthfeel – Medium body with only a slight tannic roughness on the tongue. No carbonation, so it turns out my post-fermentation stirring was aggressive enough to knock the CO2 out of solution.

Drinkability & Notes – For a first attempt at home winemaking I'm really happy with how this wine came out.  I wish it was a bit lighter and drier so it was more refreshing for the summer, but there are no off-flavors. I may try making a big red wine this fall, something I can enjoy slowly over a couple of years.


mc said...

I had a Imperial IPA from Evil Twin Brewing yesterday that had 10% chardonnay blended into it. It added a nice bit of complexity. Just an idea if you need to use up the rest of the white wine.

The Mad Fermentationist (Mike) said...

Interesting. I may try blending a bit of this wine into the hoppy red ale I have on tap to see how the flavors mesh.