A Bulk Aging Disagreement
So I was browsing the Advintage website and came across their FAQ’s. You can have a look here yourself.
Scroll down to Question No. 16.
“Can I age my wine in the carboy?
This is commonly known as bulk aging and is usually an accepted practice for people who are making their wine from grapes. When you are making your wine from a wine kit, you do not need to bulk age your wine and your wine WILL NOT benefit from doing so. Follow all the instruction perfectly in the time frame recommended and then bottle within one or two weeks”
Ummm.. your wine “WILL NOT benefit from doing so?” This is incorrect. All you have to do is look at their next answer to realize how silly their answer to question #16 is:
“17. How long can I age my bottles of wine for?
All wine kits are designed so that they can be consumed right away. Your wine does have a shelf life however and can be stored and consumed at a later date. The length of time that it will last depends on many factors. There is no set aging time. A lot of it has to do with the care that was taken during the winemaking process, and of course, the conditions you have for storing your bottled wine. Optimum conditions are a constant 55°F. Many people do not have these conditions. The most important thing, however is that the wine is kept at a constant temperature and not in a place where the temperatures fluctuates up and down on a regular basis. Another fact to consider is that the corks we supply with the wine kits are not meant for long-term aging. If you want to age your wine, we recommend that you purchase a higher quality cork.”
Let’s see what they have correct in that last answer first. They are right. There is no “set aging time.” It does depend on many factors, including the variety of grapes the juice came from, the chemical make up of those grapes the year they were harvested, and yes – the conditions in which the wine was aged!
I’d disagree that optimum conditions are a “constant 55F.” It’s more like a range of temperature that does not have sudden changes. If you could get a constant temperature of 55F, that would be optimum I guess, but a degree here or there isn’t going to do damage.
But here’s the thing: In question #17, they say “Many people do not have these conditions.” I’d suggest that “MOST” people do not have those conditions available to them. And this is one of the reasons why bulk aging a wine will benefit many people. If they can bulk age their wine, their wine is not going to be affected negatively as much if it’s a bulk of 5 gallons than it will be affected if the wine is in 750 ml bottles. And if there do happen to be some sudden changes in temperature, 5 gallons of bulk will handle that far better than 750 ml will.
What’s your opinion or experience?