Wine Making & Grape Growing Forum > Wine Making > Beginners Wine Making Forum > How do you know how much sugar to add?

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Old 08-26-2012, 05:30 PM   #1
jdensmore
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Default How do you know how much sugar to add?

Hello everyone! I'm working on my first batch of Concord Grape wine. We picked the grapes fresh just a few days ago. I have it almost ready to add Yeast, And i'm wondering if there is a specific gravity i should be shooting for. I want to make a Sweet "Delicious" Concord so i also need to know how do i determine how much sugar i use to back sweeten the wine. Does anyone have a preferred method for this?

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Old 08-26-2012, 05:34 PM   #2
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Hi jdensmore,

Welcome to winemakingtalk. You need to start your must out at around 1.080. let if ferment to dry and backsweeten, I would backsweeten to 1.010, taste to see if you like that

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Old 08-26-2012, 05:38 PM   #3
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Thanks Julie, i may be new here but just from the little bit of researching i have done on here i know you are the Bee's knees when it comes to this stuff! So i will take your advice!! And i just realized you live in Saxonburg, do you know Eric Edder?

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Old 08-26-2012, 06:22 PM   #4
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Sorry, no don't know the name but maybe to see him. Saxonburg is not all that big. I see u live in butler, so let me say welcome neighbor. There are a few of us on here that try to get together a couple times a year, maybe you can join us for our next gathering.

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Old 09-03-2012, 08:28 PM   #5
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so I started the must at 1.08o ish, and after a challenging fermentation 7 days later I'm at 1.010, I'm using the check list provided on this forum, so if it's still 1.010 Tomorrow I'll strain and put it into the carboy. I'm actually doing two batches of the same grapes, but one batch was frozen just grapes, and the other was grapes and stems (we ran out of time De stemming, but De stemmed before started the must) my question is when do I finally back sweeten? I understand sweetening to 1.010, but when?? Also my ph levels are 75 and 80 is this to high? . One last question, what is wrong with fermenting at temps higher than 75°?? Julie my wife and I may take you up on that, will you be at the festival next weekend??

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Old 09-04-2012, 03:42 AM   #6
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Let your wine ferment to dry. Dry is 1.000 but I would let it ferment lower than that, if possible. If your wine is still in a primary, you can snap down the lid and add an airlock and let it ferment to dry.

Once dry, rack again, add k-meta. At this point I will let it set until it clears unless you have a lot of lees in the bottom of your carboy, if so, rack. Once clear, rack off any lees, add k-meta and sorbate and backsweeten.

To backsweeten, I take some of the wine add it to a pot, add sugar warm it up until sugar disolves and then add it back to the wine. Rule of thumb - 1 cup of sugar will raise sg .018 per gallon.

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Old 09-04-2012, 04:31 AM   #7
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Excellent so the classification of dry wine starts @ 1.000? Is this where people will keep their wine of they prefer a dry wine? Or is this just a reference point for brewing?

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Old 09-04-2012, 08:53 AM   #8
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Also any thoughts on fermenting above 80°? Reason I ask is I left my buckets outside to get the temperature up past 65° and yesterday when I checked it out read 84!!!

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Old 09-04-2012, 11:05 AM   #9
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I have fermented a wine at warmer temp, not on purpose. Started in late fall in basement with cornburner going and it kept temps around the 80* mark. wine finished real fast and was extremely dry. After three days I never seen another bubble in the air lock, racked in 7, and bottled after 30 days.

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Old 09-04-2012, 12:13 PM   #10
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For red grapes - 75-80* is fine - it will aid in color extraction. White grapes you would want to ferment a little cooler - I like ferment at 54* for whites..

I agree with Julie's directions - follow them - you should be good to go..

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