boiling watermelon

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Arkansan07

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I have been wanting to make watermelon wine and have read about all the problems it has. Could a guy take his watermelon juice and heat it to kill off wild yeasts? I would think this would let you skip the waiting period for Kmeta to evaporate. I have a walk in cooler as well so I could boil then take it straight to a 36 degree environment. I would think you could have your starter ready to go and as soon as your prepared juice reaches a lower temp you could pitch. Thoughts?
 

dralarms

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Not a bad idea, I've been thinking about steam juicing my next batch. That should sterilize the juice.
 

DoctorCAD

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Boiling fruit seems to change its taste, not suggested for wine.

There is nothing wrong with using natures yeast killer (sulphites) to keep any nasties at bay until your wine yeast takes over.
 

dorfie

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I've also thought about heating the watermelon wine, my thought was geared towards concentrating the flavor, but i guess it would sterilize it as well. My only concern is that watermelon is such a delicate and light flavor that heating it would remove some of the flavor, but I have no real idea. maybe try it and see?
 

WVMountaineerJack

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You could also just skip the KM step and toss your yeast in just as the juice is ready, in fact you could toss it in the bucket as you are adding the juice. Cooking watermelon with such a delicate aroma doesnt sound like such a good idea, neither does steaming it, you can add KM when you rack to the secondary after the primary is done. I would also say to look at the experiments Jack Keller has done to make watermelon wine. WVMJ
 

Julie

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Watermelon spoils exceptually very easy, so I wonder if heating like you plan on doing just might be a pretty good idea.
 

kyjake

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You have the perfect set up for making watermelon.Wash the melons and put them in the cooler at least overnight and and process them inside the cooler.
Have the sulfate ready to add before you break the first melon.
 

Wayne1

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Hey - I have made watermelon wine twice - used 100% watermelon juice. I pitched the yeast immediately and had no problems with infection.
 

Jesse Brown

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i know this is an older thread, but I just wanted to relay my experience this weekend. I tried using a steam juicer on watermelon for the same reasons as described above. It was a flop. The juice that came out was relatively low brix (about 3%) and was almost colorless. The juicer didn't pull any of the watermelon's red coloring. Also the juice tasted bad. I used a fruit press on the rest of the melons and got great results - nice red, clean, smells good, tastes good, and brix between 7% and 8%. The really loose meat from the center resulted in the best quality juice.

I took some of the good juice and tried to reduce it (concentrate) by heating on the stove. This was also a flop. The red part of the juice coagulated into a ball and left a nearly colorless juice that tasted like old carrots. Not good.

Later, I'll make a post of mine attempt at watermelon wine. It is currently fermenting nicely. I think i may have succeeded in getting it going without spoiling.
 

DIYer

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Over on the beer forum (homebrewtalk.com), there is a thread about concentrating watermelon juice by freezing and thawing. Doesn't address the sterilization issue, if that's a big concern, but it will concentrate the flavor and usually preserves the color. If you're interested, I'll find the thread and provide a link.
 

Scooter68

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Freeze and thaw makes a lot more sense, much less likely to destroy flavors plus as long as you keep it cold, spoilage should not be an issue within reason.

Same basic method used to produce Eis wine.
 

Jesse Brown

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I did some research and performed the "freeze and thaw". It works fairly well. I ended up with about 1/4 of the original volume with about 2.5 times the original brix. Just for fun, I melted the "ice" and the brix was only 3%. Keeping in mind that the original brix was about 7.5%. Here's something odd. The color stayed with the water. The stronger (read more sugar) that the liquid had, the lighter and less red color it had.

The good news is that i've got the wine going with no spoiling!
 

DIYer

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I did some research and performed the "freeze and thaw". It works fairly well. I ended up with about 1/4 of the original volume with about 2.5 times the original brix. Just for fun, I melted the "ice" and the brix was only 3%. Keeping in mind that the original brix was about 7.5%. Here's something odd. The color stayed with the water. The stronger (read more sugar) that the liquid had, the lighter and less red color it had.

The good news is that i've got the wine going with no spoiling!
Excellent! I'm glad my suggestion worked for you. You could always add a bit of food coloring or steep some dried hibiscus to add color.
 

Scooter68

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Whenever possible (and if needed) I would resort to using Natural sources for color additions

20-25 - Dark Red "meat" Sweet Cherries into an 3 gallon batch of Peach Wine will darken it and 'Rose' it up without any flavor change. Takes a some imagination sometimes, but; the result is 'an honest' wine with no artificial additives to change color or flavor.
 

Donatelo

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You could also just skip the KM step and toss your yeast in just as the juice is ready, in fact you could toss it in the bucket as you are adding the juice. Cooking watermelon with such a delicate aroma doesnt sound like such a good idea, neither does steaming it, you can add KM when you rack to the secondary after the primary is done. I would also say to look at the experiments Jack Keller has done to make watermelon wine. WVMJ
This is a Jack Keller recipe or at least from his web site. I didn't like the idea of boiling this recipe, but it is as the recipe stated. We shall see what we shall see I'll check back with you .
 

MickeyB

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Am old and southern, and can tell you my palate can’t differentiate wine made from pasteurized watermelon juice vs non. Have had it both ways many times and just can’t tell the difference. I pasteurize mine at about 150 and have no spoilage nor ‘weird’ smell problems, but also prepare a yeast starter a day or more ahead of time, so the army is ready as soon as the juice cools. The starter makes all the difference in the world with finicky musts, or those that you want rolling quickly.
 

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