Like a good winemaker, I’ve waited over a week, and gold (aka beige sludge) is my reward:

Muddy gold.

My minifridge is magic. It has driven the flurry of yeasts into hibernation. Last week’s sulfuring got that spiked ball-of-death rolling. But now a week of cold has sunk them into a mass of hibernation at the bottom of the glass carboy (pictured).

So I heave the tank out, set up a camera, and…

Still with me? No? Good. So, I kinda, sorta suck at racking. That brown in the tube means I  will need to rack another day. But to ensure the wine listens, I need to fine it:

Now back to the tank…

Coaxing wine into something drinkable is trench warfare. You wait. And wait. But once the time comes, you have to be ready. Sterilizing helps. Videotaping doesn’t.

Check in next week, maybe I can rack this cleanly.


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3 Responses to SETTLING.DOWN.

  1. sand110 says:

    How is this “wine” different than the Vignole?

    • waywardwine says:

      Both grapes are cold hardy and ripen early enough to be harvested in northerly climates. Both grapes were developed through experimental crossings in France in the early 1900s, for greater reliability and productivity: Vidal in France’s South East (Cognac, Armagnac regions etc.)’s and Vignoles in the northeast’s (Burgundy).

      Both grapes caught on in the Northeast US and in Canada mainly for their hardiness and have mostly been turned into riesling-esque off-dry through dessert wines.

      Vignoles is a hybrid (both parents are the same species: vitis vinifera ) while vidal is a crossing between different species (of Ugni Blanc (French grape for Cognac) and Rayon d’Or (an earlier American grape crossing).

      They both maintain high acids through ripening, which is great for dessert wine, but difficult for drier styles. Of the wines I’ve had, Vidal seems milder, muted, and lighter in comparison to Vignoles’ intense tropical fruit and spice notes and headier aromatics (which might be due to its tighter clusters, which are more prone to rot, which evaporates water and concentrates sugars and esters). Overall, yeasts and the winemaker have the greater influence on how these will taste.


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