Wine kits and beer kits don’t all take the same amount of time to complete. The time between starting the kit and bottling varies depending on the type of kit.

Wine kits are packaged with a bag full of grape juice concentrate and all of the standard kits produce 23 litres of wine, so obviously the higher volume the kit, the less water you have to add. Also, the more real juice (ie. less concentrated juice) the longer it will take, both before bottling, and before it is ready to drink. Here are some rough guidelines on the different kits, from box to bottle.

7.5 to 10 litre kit, 4 weeks

14 to 16 litre kit, 6 weeks

16 litres or more, 8 weeks

The same kits will take different amounts of time in the bottle before they hit their prime time to drink. For the three “grades” of kits they’ll be in their prime to drink in 1 to 3 months, 3 to 6 months, and 9 to 12 months or more, respectively. Of course these are simply guidelines. The wine kit I am currently making is ready to drink when bottled. It’s a nice way to start with wine making, so you can start enjoying the fruits of your labour right away.

There are also many different types of beer kits, but the one brand I am familiar with (through their product literature only) claim from box to bottle is 5 weeks. 1 week in the pail, 2 weeks in the carboy for fermentation to complete and for it to clear, then 2 weeks in the bottle for carbonation.