A Sense of Wine

A Sense of Wine is Wine Sense's journal of new products, techniques and behind the scenes info for those who love to make wine. The authors are the Wine Sense staff. You will be familiar with them as the friendly faces that serve you whenever you stop by one of the stores. Join us as we share our insights on new procucts, advice and our experiences. Please feel free to comment on any posts- we look forward to your input!

December 2011


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Check Your Temperature!

December 16, 2011

If you are having a hard time clearing you white wine you are not alone. This is a reoccurring situation that happens during the fall and spring when temperatures range greatly from day to night and day to day. It also seems to be happening now during this warm winter.


Now you are thinking “What the heck? This hasn’t happened before… my wine always clears.”

There are a few things that could be the cause. One is doing a poor job of degassing your wine. Using the spoon or shaking the carboy does not always do a thorough job. Use a drill attachment Wine Whip to ensure there is no residual CO2 left in the wine. The second and most common problem is temperature. For a wine to clear consistently it has to be warm, about 22c. Most homes now have electronic thermostats that are programmed to lower the temperature during the day when nobody is home and at night when everyone is asleep. The house cools down during these periods and this slows down clearing. Remember the recommended temperature in your instructions if for the whole winemaking process- not just while the wine is fermenting. Finally- use your Hydrometer! If you stabilize your wine too soon you will have clearing problems.

Here are some ideas to help clearing:

-Use a heat belt to increase the temperature in the carboy. 

-Use a Digital Thermometer on your carboy- they’re in expensive but very useful. This will tell you at a glance what the wine temperature is. You might be surprised- remember your wall thermostat is only accurate for the location that it’s in.

-Set your carboy on an insulator on the table. Use a towel or piece of Styrofoam. The carboy will transfer cold from the table to the wine if there is no barrier between them. Also wrap your carboy if you have a ‘set-back’ thermostat or disable the ‘set-back’ function.

-Always use your Hydrometer.

Have a Merry Christmas,

Bruce, Manager (Wine Sense- Pembina Hwy)

Filed under: Uncategorized by WineSense

Try Legacy Gewurztraminer

December 14, 2011

Well- after the long, hot, wonderful summer and autumn we had I finally have some white wine to drink at home again. Unfortunately I spent more time this summer enjoying the weather (and my wine) and did not keep up with production. So I just bottled the Legacy Gewurtztraminer the other day.

Legacy is a new line we carry and I’m quite impressed by it. Legacy is a value priced 16 litre wine kit (which includes labels) and is a great kit to try for those 10 litre kit makers who are thinking of making the jump to a larger format kit. Both 10 litre and 16 litre kits make the same 23 litre volume- but you’re adding only 7 litres of water to a 16 litre kit so you get a more full-bodied wine.

My Legacy Gewurztraminer finished with a light straw colour and to the nose you could sense the floral notes brought on by the elderflowers. Nice tropical fruits flavours on the finish with just a touch of sweetness to it. I recommend this wine and as luck has it , it is on sale until this Sunday, December 18th, 2011.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays,

Bob, Manager (Wine Sense- Pembina Hwy)

Filed under: General, Wine, New Products by WineSense

Christmas Shopping Tips

December 9, 2011
It’s hard to believe that Christmas is only 2 weeks away! Hopefully your Christmas shopping is done (like me!) or nearly finished. If you are not, I’ve got some shopping tips for you. After years of experience in retailing I have a few pointers that will help make it a little easier for you.
1.) Don’t let the stress get to you. Remember Christmas is about joy and happiness!
2.) Take a deep breath and if possible shop early in the day to avoid the crowds- and always budget extra time as you probably won’t be able to run in quickly to get what you want.
3.) If you get hungry- stop for food and then restart your shopping. It’s much easier to shop when you don’t have to listen to your stomach growl. And don’t forget to stay hydrated- walking around the mall in your winter coat will heat you up.
4.) Treat yourself to the a ‘Self Gift’! Statistics show that 65% of people now by themselves a gift at Christmas time… you deserve it!
5.) When you get home, celebrate your day of shopping-  put on some good music, put your feet up and have a glass of your favourite wine.

To all of my customers and their families have a safe and Happy Chistmas.

Bruce, Manager (Wine Sense- Pembina Hwy)

Filed under: General by WineSense

Some Gift Ideas!

December 2, 2011

Don’t let the weather fool you! With only 3 weeks to Christmas now is the time to think of those little gifts for the home wine maker. There are many options. For under $20 you can get them an Avvinator/Sulphiter to sanitize your bottles, or a Bottle Tree to dry your bottles. Also, for stocking stuffers we have Siphon Clips, Bag Decappers or the incredibly popular Wine Sense Bottle Stoppers.

The Carboy Cleaner

Two of our most popular equipment pieces are the Wine Whip and the Carboy Cleaner. Both are great tools which will make your winemaking even easier. And of course the Buon Vino Mini Jet Filter is the ultimate gift for any wine maker- to put the finishing polish on your wine. 

Click here to view some of our most popular Equipment.

Click here to view a video of the Carboy Cleaner.

If you are unsure what your wine maker needs- we also have Wine Sense Gift Cards that we can load with any dollar value you wish.

Have a great Christmas!


Bruce, Manager (Wine Sense- Pembina Hwy)

Filed under: General, Equipment by WineSense


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