Winexpert Lodi Old Vines Zinfandel 2015

Date October 24, 2015 | Chuck | Homebrew & Wine
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I'll be reviewing and comparing three different Lalvin yeasts using this kit.  The goal is to compare the taste and aromatic differences between Lalvin BM 4x4 vs RC-212 vs EC-1118.  Fermentation Temperature: 70F

 

Inside the box ($140 CDN):
  • bag of grape juice (16 litres)
  • crushed grape pack (2 litres)
  • oak cubes (french medium - 60 grams)
  • bentonite (15 grams)
  • potassium metabisulfite (4 grams)
  • potassium sorbate (5.5 grams - not used)
  • chitosan (150mL x2)
  • yeast (Lalvin EC-1118)

 

Pitch Date: October 24, 2015

Lalvin BM 4x4

Lalvin RC-212

Lalvin EC-1118

  • 4.5 gallons
  • OG: 1.084 - likely higher from grape pack
  • .75 gallons
  • .75 gallons
Day 2
  • Added 1/2 tsp wyeast beer nutrient.  Full Dose
  • Light Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) detected
  • Added 1/8 tsp wyeast beer nutrient
  • Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) detected
  • Added 1/8 tsp wyeast beer nutrient
  • Light Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) detected
Day 3
  • Added 1 tsp wyeast beer nutrient.  Double Dose
  • Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) detected
 -  -
Day 4
  • Added 1/4 tsp wyeast beer nutrient. (Half Dose)
  • Reduced Hydrogen Sulfide (H2S) detected
 -
  •  Most CO2 by far, wine is very fizzy compared to the other 2 yeasts.
Day 8
Move to Secondary & Taste Test

Aroma:

  • blueberry
  • blackberry
  • plum jam

Flavours:

  • dark plum
  • ripe dark berries
  • light sulfur (should off gas)
  • light heat

Notes:

  • #1 pick

 

Aroma:

  • dark cherry
  • blueberry


Flavours:

  • non-descript dark red berry
  • light sulfur (should off gas)

Notes:

  • #2 pick
  • thinner body than BM 4x4
  • would use in a pinot noir or lighter red wine

Aroma:

  • dark cherry
  • mild blackberry


Flavours:

  • mild strawberry
  • red berries

 

 


Notes:

  • #3 pick
  • least aromatic
  • lightest body
Day 14
Degas / Sulphite / Fine
Day 21
  • Bottle an unoaked sample 
  • Rack to 3 gallon carboy
  • add 35g oak cubes
  • add 1/8 tsp k-meta
  •  Bottle an unoaked sample
  •  Bottle an unoaked sample

 

oak the leftover gallon with 10g medium french oak cubes

 

This was racked off the oak after 3 weeks into a fresh 3g carboy for the rest of the bulk age.  (Should have left them in)

 

combine leftover rc-212 with the ec-1118.  
(should be about a gallon) 

 

French Oak Cubes (rate 10g/gallon):

2 grams light
3 grams medium
5 grams heavy
Tasting Notes for the un-oaked bottles 1 month after bottling
This yeast certainly takes over and imposes it's own flabour profile.  Currently overwhelming and I wouldn't use it again.

Preferred the rc-212 & ec-1118 blend



Bulk Aging Timeline

4 Months - Feb 24, 2016 - Add 1/8 tsp kmeta to 3 gallon carboy.

7 Months - May 24, 2016 - Add 1/8 tsp kmeta to 3 gallon carboy.

8 Months - June 24, 2016 - Bottled and added 1/8 tsp kmeta. (needed the carboy, should have really bottled at last addition)

12 Months - Oct 24, 2016 - Drink.


Tasting Notes from the BM4x4:

-Aroma: berry, oak

-Taste: berry, cherry, concentrate juice

Personal Rating: 2/5

 

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