Another Newbie here...

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Apr 26, 2021
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I found this site on a trapping site and here I am. My girlfriend loves wine and made me a Wino so as a result I figured maybe it'd be cheaper to make wine rather than spend $10/day on sipping wine.
I've read alot of stuff and watched some utube videos. There seems to be some info that contradicts one another.
I first started out with frozen grape juice concentrate, then tried some apple and pineapple. The pineapple was surprisingly good even though the galvanized can isn't supposed to be good for wine.
I've also had good grape and apple. I think maybe the concentrate works better even the bottled juice is supposed to be 100% juice, some say there's still preservatives in there that retard good fermentation.
I've drank several gallons as I don't have the patience yet to let it sit and age.....I wanna drink it. I currently have 16 gallons going in various stages in a glass gallon jug and the rest in plastic jugs. Eventually I will graduate to 6 gallon carboys when I get a place with room to do so.
One thing that confuses opinion says to let the must breathe during primary fermentation so it can get fresh oxygen in there to help it ferment......others say to put an airlock on it even during primary fermentation to keep the bad bacteria out. All opinions would be appreciated on that topic.
I have bottles, corks, and a corker but realized already that I should have let the wine sediment settle more and siphon at least once more after the first time. After the first siphoning I bottled it and can see the clear wine showing more with each passing day as the sediment settles. Still learning!
Primary fermention is best in an open bucket with a cloth covering it to keep junk from landing in it, if you dont have a hydrometer look into getting a couple, one for back up. once your specific gravity/sg is around 1.000 syphon/rack into a secondary vessel/ glass or plastic jug then airlock .I started making wine by using a book called Mary's Recipes by Jerry Uthemann, I would have been lost without it. It will tell you all you need to know to make wine from just about anything you would want.. its worth ordering or finding at your local wine shop.
@benson56, welcome!

Regarding fermentation -- yeast needs oxygen to multiply, so fermenting in an open container with a light cover (towel) to keep "stuff" out is the preferred choice. Fermenting in a sealed container, under airlock, inhibits yeast multiplication.

Most rack the first time when the SG is between 1.010 and done (<0.998), although some rack as high as 1.020. At this point, move the wine to containers under airlock. If the fermentation is not done, leave head space as the continued fermentation can produce a volcano. After 1 to 2 weeks, fermentation should be done and the gross lees should settle and compact. Rack again and leave minimal head space. At this time, oxygen is the enemy.

Let the wine set for 3 months under airlock. At this point you can bottle if you want, although many bulk age wines for 6 to 18 months before bottling. I bulk age for 3 to 12 months, depending on the wine and if I'm using aging oak.

You need to make more wine. I'm not being funny -- the one way to get wine to age is to make more than you drink. Also, put aside a couple of bottles from each batch and don't touch them for 1 year. The taste difference will astound you.

Look up Skeeter Pee and Dragon's Blood on this forum. Both are easy to make, quick drinking wines. Something to make and drink while your other wines are aging.
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Hi benson56 - and welcome. A great deal of the "utube" videos are published by wannabe wine makers who are still cutting their baby teeth on brewing beer. Brewers tend to NEED to protect their wort and beer from bacterial infection that thrives in aerobic conditions and which is already in their grain (you soak barley or any grain in water and the pH will drop because of lacto-fermentation and the bacterial formation of lactic acids (sour beers). Since most brewers are terrified of souring their brews they do do summersaults to inhibit such activity and that involves near apoplexy at the thought of air getting anywhere near their brews after they have pitched their yeast.

Wine makers have no such concern. Fruit wines are inherently more acidic than ales and beers and lactic bacteria are not covering our fruit (though if you make vegetable pickles you can encourage these bacteria by creating a saline environment that inhibits all other competing microbes. We KNOW that yeast need oxygen (brewers do too, but they create enormous STARTERS before they pitch their yeast. Risk loving wine makers sometimes use indigenous yeast and those colony sizes are tiny. Others use lab cultured yeasts and those colonies are large. And if you ferment ON fruit (and not just juice) you MUST stir two or three times a day to ensure that all the fruit is soaking and that the fruit on the surface does not spoil because of ITS contact with air in a moist but not wet environment.

Bottom line: during ACTIVE fermentation we stir and allow air to help the yeast reproduce and repair, but as soon as active fermentation begins to slow down we rack (transfer) the wine into an air free (because fully topped up, and sealed with bung and airlock) carboy.

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