Brewing your own wine with a wine making kit is a fun hobby with an even more enjoyable reward: bottles of your very own vintage. You don’t need a whole cellar, experience, or oak casks to make your own impressive wine. Discover how easy it can be with these easy-to-follow kits.
For more brewing fun consider trying out a kombucha kit.
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1. EDITOR’S CHOICE: Master Vinter Fruit Wine KitPros:
- Two fermenting vessels
- Enough supplies for 15 one-gallon batches
- You can choose your own fruit
- Includes a hydrometer and sanitizer
- Extras like tannins, enzymes, acid blend, and straining bag
- Trusted brand
- Doesn't come with wine base
- Not bottling equipment
- No testing jar for the hydrometer
My top pick for an all-around hobby wine kit is this Fruit Wine Kit by Master Vinter. It comes with more equipment than most sets, is a convenient one-gallon batch size, and is compatible with wine base kits or your own choice of fresh fruits.
I love that the set includes enough additives for 15 batches. The equipment will last years and you’ll need to bring your own fruit or juice, but I’m talking about the ingredients like tannins and stabilizers. Most kits only give you enough for one batch, but this one will set you up for a while.
You get all the essential equipment including brewing vessel, yeast, racking cane, tubing, airlock, preservative. You also get a load of extras like a second brewing vessel (one two-gallon primary bucket and one-gallon glass carboy), hydrometer, straining bag, sanitizer, grape tannins, pectic enzyme, acid blend, stabilizer, and yeast nutrient. All those enzymes and blends and such work to improve the taste of your wine so it can better hold up to commercial vineyards.
You have lots of freedom to explore with this kit as you can use a wine concentrate kit or preservative-free juice, or you can choose to use your own fruit blends using grapes or whatever fruit you want to play with. You can make strawberry wine or blueberry wine.
The biggest issue with this set is that while it comes with a hydrometer (a rare perk) it doesn’t come with a test jar so you’ll need to either pick one up or use a very tall glass. Other than that and not having bottling supplies, this set is almost ideal.
2. Northern Mountain 32-Piece Wine Making SetPros:
- Enough ingredients for multiple batches
- Large three-gallon batches
- Good labeling and instructions
- Can brew from fruit or concentrate
- Includes many extras including tannins and pectic enzymes
- Corker, 100 corks, and shrink caps
- Hydrometer and test jar
- Does not include wine concentrate or fruit
- Too big for some
- Pricier than others
This 32-Piece Set from Northern Brewing Supply is perfect if you’re looking to make multiple batches to put away to age or give as gifts. It has a larger batch size at three-gallons and includes ingredients for several batches.
A lot of kits will give you enough stabilizer or tannins for one batch and then once that’s done, you have to go source a handful of ingredients before you can start your next batch. With this set, you get plenty of ingredients for multiple batches.
What you don’t get is the fruit or wine base concentrate so you will have to get that separately. But that gives you the freedom to decide if you want to use a commercial wine base kit or if you want to use your own grapes or even a fruit blend.
This is the set that gives you the most equipment on the list which is reflected in the price. It’s thorough and includes everything from two brewing vessels (one bucket and one carboy), yeast, hydrometer, wine thief which also serves as a hydrometer testing jar, auto-siphon, siphon hose, hose clamp, two airlocks, sanitizer, straining bag, 50 campden tablets, stabilizer, wine tannin, pectic enzyme, yeast energizer, acid blend, long stirring spoon, and bottle filler.
For bottling, the kit also includes 100 corks, a corking tool, and shrink caps (the foil seal you cut through to get to the cap) to make your wine bottles look as professional as possible.
The shrink caps and auto-siphon set this kit apart from the others.
3. Craft A Brew Beginner’s Wine Brewing KitsPros:
- Nice compact kit with glass carboy
- Kits are assembled in America
- No bottles but comes with zork closures
- Includes wine juice base
- Easy to follow instructions
- Additives for improved taste and clarity
- Only one brewing vessel
- No hydrometer
- Racking cane instead of auto-siphon
- No sanitizer included
This Craft A Brew kit is nice and compact making it a great gift as they don’t need to dedicate a large area for it.
It comes with everything you need including the wine juice base, yeast, glass brewing vessel, airlock, racking cane siphon and tubing, and preservative. As a bonus you also get bentonite clay and chitosan for clarifying your wine so it’s nice and clear, potassium metabisulfite to protect from oxidation, funnel, stopper, tube clamp, and five zork closures.
While you don’t get bottles, you do get these zork closures that don’t require a special corking tool and work on any glass wine bottle you wish to reuse.
The downside to this kit is that it doesn’t include a hydrometer or secondary brewing vessel. In the brewing process, you’ll need to transfer your wine into something else briefly before returning it to the glass carboy. You can use a clean large pot or bucket for this, but it would be nice if they just included something like that for you.
4. Home Brew Ohio 1 Gallon of Wine Brewed from FruitPros:
- Can use whatever fruit you want
- Two fermenting vessels
- Additives for up to 15 gallons
- Includes sanitizer, straining bag, yeast, and yeast nutrient
- Also with tannins, pectic enzyme, acid blend, and potassium sorbate
- Raking cane
- Includes recipe suggestions
- Does not include hydrometer
- No bottling supplies
- Must supply your own fruit
For those looking for something affordable or doesn’t rely on juice concentrates, consider this Brew Wine from Fruit Brewing Kit from Home Brew Ohio. It gives you everything you need to brew a gallon of wine from whatever fruit you desire.
So you do have to provide your own fruit but there’s a freshness and freedom there that you can’t get from a kit that comes with grape juice concentrate. You can brew simple grape wine or add strawberries, or brew blueberry only wine. There’s a lot to play with here and if you’re not sure what to do, they offer a list of recipe suggestions.
The kit comes with a two-gallon plastic primary fermenter for the first stage, a one-gallon glass growler as your secondary fermentor, and a plastic airlock that works with both. It covers the basics of providing yeast, preservatives, and a racking cane siphon. It doesn’t come with a hydrometer but you can pick up a set of a hydrometer with a convenient test jar for fairly cheap. A hydrometer allows you to determine the alcohol content of your wine and can be a good way to tell when your wine is ready to bottle. It’s worth having one in my experience.
For extras, the set includes cleaning agent, straining bag, yeast nutrient, and enough additives for 15 gallons of wine. Additives help to improve the taste of your wine and the set includes an acid blend, grape tannins, and pectic enzyme.
It’s a decent budget kit if you’re interested in brewing fruit wines. The bucket fermenter can feel a little flimsy and cheap but I’ve used these sorts of plastic buckets for my hard cider and I can’t complain about the results.
5. Wild Grapes Wine Base & Equipment KitsPros:
- Many varieties of wine to choose from
- Equipment and wine base sold separately
- More tools than most sets offer
- Can brew a ton of wine at a time
- Two brewing vessels
- Includes hydrometer and wine thief
- Wine base includes labels and some come with oak chips
- Not all one single kit
- Too large for some
- No auto-siphon
Wild Grapes takes a slightly different approach and offers a wine making equipment set and then a range of wine ingredient sets that include the base and additives sized to fit their equipment set. This way you can purchase your equipment and then easily choose the wine you want to brew each time.
Keep in mind, this set is meant to brew much larger quantities of wine at a time, to the tune of six gallons at once. That’s about 30 bottles and is going to be too much for some hobbies but perfect for others who want to put wine way to age or give as gifts.
The equipment set comes with a plastic primary fermenter, a plastic carboy secondary fermenter, hydrometer, testing jar, thermometer, airlock, racking cane, siphon tubing, tubing clamp, long stirring spoon, wine thief, sodium metabisulfite, 30 corks, and a hand corker tool. That covers a lot more of the tools you hope to find in a kit compared to others.
The wine base kits include your base concentrate, yeast, clarifying agents, bentonite clay, sulfite/sorbate packet, and flavorings depending on the wine type including oak chips.
Wild Grapes has a huge range of wine types to play with including California Moscato, Pino Grigio, Chilean Merlot, and Black Cherry Mist.
Is Brewing Your Own Wine Legal?
Yes, it is, as part of a law passed in 1978. Some states have their own individual statues, but generally, a person can brew up to 100 gallons of beer or wine per year, or up to 200 gallons per year if there is more than one adult living in the home.
What you can't do, across the board, is sell your homebrew. In most states, you can bring it for personal use to gatherings or give it to friends and family as gifts but it is illegal to sell alcoholic beverages you've brewed unless specifically authorized by the government.
Does It Take Forever to Get Actual Wine?
In my experience, no. You can get perfectly drinkable hard cider and wine in about a month's time when you brew at home. Putting some bottles aside to age will improve their taste but it's not specifically necessary to age your brews after bottling.
In our home, we'll always drink some after we bottle, but we find the flavor greatly improves after a couple of months and is worth the wait.
How Do Wine Kits Work?
A good wine kit provides you with all the tools, ingredients, and easy-to-follow instructions needed to produce your very own batch of wine.
Some will only cover up through the brewing process and you'll need to purchase your own bottling supplies and others will include everything you need all the way through bottling.
The bottling isn't a big deal though as you can reuse empty commercial wine bottles and their corks.
What's a Basic Wine Making Equipment List?
Most kits should include: a brewing vessel, yeast, juice concentrate, preservatives, airlock, and a siphon.
Neat bonuses to look for include: hydrometer, auto-siphon, special cleaning solutions to sterilize your equipment, secondary brewing vessel, straining bag, bottling supplies, and other ingredients to improve the taste of your wine like acids, clays, and tannins.
Is Wine From Kits Any Good?
Good wine is a result of good brewing but most importantly of good ingredients so your wine will only be as good as your kit. This is why it's important to go with quality kits from trusted names in the brewing community.
In general, homemade wines tend to be fruit-forward, less alcoholic, and easier to drink than many commercial offerings. If they're aged, you could likely fool friends into thinking you bought it at a store.
What Is Wine Anyway?
Wine is made with the juice and sometimes pulp or skins of grapes and fermented using yeast.
The first writings on how to brew wine originally from around the year 2750 BCE. So humans have been drinking wine or a long time.
Think about how much different life was for people 2,000 years ago. Now go 2,000 father back than that--and they're still brewing wine.
That said, wine was slightly different back then. You wouldn't drink wine straight and to do so was a sign of being uncultured. Wine was always diluted with water or even seawater. Just one of the many reasons I'm happy to be alive now and not in 2000 BCE.