The Home Vintner - The Home Vintner Monthly Newsletter - September 2014


We are pleased to announce the return of Chocolate Raspberry Port (Dessert Wine) and, after a three year hiatus, Blackberry Port (Dessert Wine) is making a comeback.  

For a limited time only, we are offering two great products for you to enjoy this fall. Get a kit started now and dazzle your friends and family over the Christmas holidays. 

To guarantee that you receive your Port we will accept pre-orders until September 8th.

Click here for the pre-order form.


Introducing a new addition to the Winexpert "Falliday" limited release program.  New Island Mist Merlot HO HO has notes of orange, cranberry, spice and cloves paired with round, fruit-forward Merlot.  This unique Island Mist can be enjoyed at room temperature or slightly warmed.  Available on a first come, first served basis in early September.  Get it started soon so you'll have a festive beverage over the holiday season.  Think mulled wine, but better, leave a glass for Santa to ensure you've made the 'nice' list!


All Selection Series 16 litre kits are $7.00 off in September.  Our most popular premium wines are made for those who demand exceptional body, flavour and aroma from their wine.  You can choose the perfect wine for any occasion from over 40 different varieties.  





When you purchase a 750ml bottle of wine from a liquor store in Alberta, you pay two taxes:

1.  Alberta Gaming & Liquor Commission (AGLC) mark-up rate for 750 ml wine under 16% alcohol is $2.59 a bottle.

2.  GST on the entire purchase including GST on the AGLC tax.  So you are paying tax on a tax!  

All wine & beer kits are considered to be a food product so they are tax free; no AGLC mark up and no GST!

It's not just tax on wine but beer too.  The AGLC standard mark-up rate for beer is $.98 per litre plus GST.  Our standard beer kit produces 23 litres of beer so if you do the math, that's over $23.00 in your pocket, not the government's!

click here for the AGLC mark-up rates...


We aren't kidding when we say we have personally brewed and tasted the finished product from every kit we sell in our stores.
The Home Vintner Wine guild has accumulated an impressive 656 provincial, national and international awards.  These prize winning wines were all crafted from the same kits we sell in our stores.  We focus exclusively on the quality end of the market.  After all, it’s your time and energy that goes into the art of creating homemade wine.  It takes just as much time to make a poor quality kit as it does an excellent quality kit. We want you to be proud to serve your friends carefully crafted wines with character.  Because of our commitment to the highest standards in kits we are able to offer you a 100 per cent guarantee.  In the words of Paul, the owner, a wine kit is like a toaster.  If it doesn't work, you bring it back.  We’re confident you won’t be disappointed as we’re always around to offer expert advice - in person, by phone, email, facebook and twitter.


Simply click here to go to our website then select the products you want. Checkout, pay with Visa or MasterCard, then choose delivery or pick up.  This is especially helpful for our customers who shop at our satellite stores in Cochrane, Drumheller, Rocky Mountain House and Olds.  By ordering on line you can be sure your products are in stock and ready to pick up at the location of your choice.

We hear it often, “I followed the instructions exactly according to the number of days, but my wine didn’t turn out well” and "It is day number __ so I have to stabilize my wine tonight".  PLEASE NOTE: the instructions in your wine kit are written for North America and are a generalization.  To be accurate, specific gravity readings must be taken.   At our elevation it will take more time.  Leaving it in the carboy under airlock will only improve the quality of your wine.  Have patience.

Another very common situation we face is when CO2 is locked in the wine.  If the C02 is not removed before you bottle, it will give you a prickly bite when you taste it.  Talk to our staff about the Vacuvin degasser system also about renting one of our electric degassers.


The Winexpert Eclipse project was three years in the making with the ultimate goal of producing the best wine kit ever.  Simply put – Eclipse is for those who want to make the highest quality wine possible.

Each style is double-blind tested by the Andrew Peller Ltd. professional tasting panel and must meet or exceed commercial wine in the $30 - $45 price range before being released.  Eclipse offers the best of both worlds: it's good at 3 months of aging, but also holds generous rewards for those who age it much longer.  Choose from 11 styles.




You may have noticed a substantial change in Winexpert wine kit instructions.  The process of topping up with water at step #3 (stabilising and clearing) has been eliminated.  Also, when the wine is ready for bottling if you would rather bulk age it in the carboy, we recommend leaving the wine under vacuum using a Vacuvin plug.  In eliminating a water addition, we can ensure that our kits will have the precise flavour profile and alcohol content our winemakers have intended from the beginning. When finished, your wine will come up to the shoulders of your carboy producing just over 28 bottles of perfectly balanced wine.


This has a great effect on how wine is perceived.  As a general rule, wine served at warmer temperatures tend to exhibit a more intense aroma due to the greater volatility of the aromatic compounds found in the wine.   A cooler temperature tends to give wine a more refreshing quality, but could diminish the aroma, making the tastes of acid (sour) and sugar (sweet) more prevalent.

Overall, it depends on what style of wine you are serving and what characteristics you wish to emphasize.  We all know red wines should be served closer to room temperature, while white wines slightly chilled, but there are some exceptions.  

Pinot Noir, for example, is a red that benefits from being slightly chilled.  Meanwhile, to emphasize the rich,woodsy notes of a particularly full-bodied Chardonnay (especially one a few years old) can be served less chilled.  Take it from the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes rather than pulling it straight from the ice bucket.

If wine is too warm it will taste flabby.  Even reds can be slightly chilled to be at their best. 


Did you know that the aromas, flavours and textures in beer are just as complex as in wine?  Judging beer is a lot like judging wine, except you’re searching for slightly different characteristics.  The first steps are similar, except: don’t swirl because you will disturb the carbonation. Nobody likes flat beer.

 First, take note of the aromas.  It is best to do this directly after it is poured because, unlike wine, it takes very little time for complex aromas to dissipate.  A sweet smell will indicate the presence of malt, and depending on the hop variety, you will notice earthy, herbal, floral or citrus aromas.

 Next, look at the appearance. Each style of beer has its own character. Is it a golden pilsner?  An amber pale ale?  A near-black stout?  Then consider the flavour and mouthfeel. Sweet or roasty indicates malt, while earthy and herbal indicate different hops.  Is it sweet or tart?  For example, a wheat beer tends to exhibit refreshingly tart citrus notes.  

Finally, notice the mouthfeel.  Is it rich and chewy?  Or light and watery, like many mass-produced beers? If you’re judging this beer for yourself, then the most important questions are: do you like it?  Would you make it again? If it’s a commercial beer you really enjoy, why not stop by and talk with any of our expert staff.  Tell us which qualities you liked most.  Then we can help you choose the beer that's best for you.


Over 20,000 people have attended our wine & beer making courses since 1993.  During September we are offering 2 for 1!  $25.00 for you and a friend.  Join us as we walk you through the steps.

If you have taken this course before and would like a refresher, there is no charge for you and a guest.

Classes for June are now posted - click here to go to our event calendar... 


To enter, become a friend of The Home Vintner on Facebook. This months winner of a $25.00 gift certificate is Sherri Seiz...


click here to like us on facebook... 



Each month, every wine or beer purchase automatically enters you into our monthly draw.  This month's winner of a $25.00 gift certificate is Brian Lockha who shop in our NE store.



Join us on Twitter @TheHomeVintner to keep up with the latest news, events, sales, questions and comments.

Monthly prize winner of a $25.00 gift certificate is Tyler Linton@FordFan34.  




World Vineyard California Zinfandel/Shiraz - $5 off

A deep flavourful red wine with notes of wild raspberry, Iberian black cherries, organic Pakistani figs, dark chocolate and a jamminess that finishes with a light peppery spice.

Sweetness: DRY | Body: MEDIUM | Oak Intensity: LIGHT

World Vineyard French Sauvignon Blanc - $5 off

Steely, grassy, herbaceous the classic traits of palate-cleansing Sauvignon Blanc are here in this version sourced directly from the French countryside. Crisp and dry, this refreshing wine is a fabulous match with food, as its full, fresh flavours and wonderfully balanced acidity make it essential with chicken, fish and grilled vegetables.

Sweetness: DRY | Body: LIGHT-MEDIUM | Oak Intensity: NONE

Vintners Reserve Mezza Luna Red - $5 off

This is our fullest bodied Vintners Reserve red  This ‘big red’ wine is rich and flavourful. An Italian inspired blend marries intense aromas with complex flavours and hints of cherry and raspberry.  It boasts dark red colours and a nice oak enhancement.  Great complexity for a 28-day wine, Mezza Luna is a powerful and lively red to serve with hearty meals.

Excellent with grilled meats, roasts and stews. Italian rich tomato dishes are also a great match.

Sweetness: Dry | Body: Medium-Full | Oak Intensity: Medium

Vintners Reserve Mezza Luna White - $5 off

Not to be overlooked.  Mezza Luna White is Vintners Reserve’s ‘great white’. It is full, round and flavourful, with big fruit flavours and aromas.  The oak provides a subtle yet noticeable balance to the fruit.  Big, lush and full bodied, Mezza Luna White is a unique white that provides amazing body and complexity in a 28-day kit. Imagine a big rich Chardonnay that is ‘ever so slightly’ off-dry.  This wine this is a ‘must’ try!

Serve with roasted chicken and turkey dinners or any other time you’d consider a rich white wine.

Sweetness: DRY | Body: MEDIUM | Oak Intensity: MEDIUM

Barons Pale Ale - $4 off   An IPA/ Innis and Gunn add on pack will give you the extra hoppiness and smooth oak barrel flavour of a genuine IPA.   

What makes a great IPA? The balance of malt, and the aroma and flavour from hops is a big part of it, but the most important factor is you. Not everyone likes IPAs, but I feel there is an IPA for everyone.  So, while its origins are still fiercely debated, nobody can deny the variety of IPAs to choose from thanks to the hops used in production.  So keep trying IPAs, you will definitely find one you like!




Saturday August 30 10-6
Sunday August 31 noon - 4
Monday September 1 closed


Saturday August 30 10-4:30
Sunday August 31 noon - 4
Monday September 1 closed


Saturday August 30 noon - 4
Sunday August 31 closed
Monday September 1 closed

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