Now onto the labeler. Again, most items in the “small winery” seem to be at least $1,000. I looked around the web and found a bottle labeler from the website www.easylabeler.com and it was only $399.
We tried it out last week while bottling our 2013 Turtle Vines Sauvignon Blanc. It took me a little while to set it up the way I wanted it, but once it was set up it worked like a champ. I think if you had a partner handing you the bottles, you could do at least 10 cases/hr.
After you fill, cork and label you need to add foil to the top of the bottle. Many folks use heat shrink plastic…not good in my taste. You can either wax them or put metal foils on top. That is the route we chose. Historically the foils were made of lead, but now they have switched to tin for obvious reasons. You would think that a foil spinner would be inexpensive, but it is over $1100. So…I borrowed one for this run and in the future will probably rent one for $50/day. Even I have a limit on spending money on wine equipment!
One last word on foils. Make sure the foil size and the bottle size match. If not, then when you “spin” them the foil will have lots of wrinkles or won’t fit on the bottle. We know from experience. Another thing…you have to purchase 1800 at a time…so make sure you carefully select you bottle size or you will be stuck with a lot of extra foils.