Can I use montmorency cherries?

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Allen

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I have 3 montmorency cherry trees. These are the somewhat sour cherries for baking. Can I make a cherry wine from these? I'm sure I can add sugar to sweeten it, but would the wine be any good?
 

St Allie

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Sound like they will make a nice wine.. Crabapples make nice wine too and they are pretty much inedible!

Let us know how you get on ..

Allie
 

Allen

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I found this recipe on the net. I don't know how many pounds of fruit I will get off the trees, but that will determine the size of batch I make. They aren't ready until mid June, but I will report back then!




I make the Montmorency Wine every year and it is awesome and so far I have not found anyone who doesn't like it.. I just made up this years batch using 100 lbs of cherries and it looks like I will have about 20 gallons of finished wine when it is done. I am sure you will enjoy it. Like alot of folks here I am constantly tweaking my recipes to try to make them better and throw stuff together based on past knowledge. But I know it can be confusing when you are trying to divide or multiply ingredients from a basic recipe to get to where you want to be. So I looked through notes from past batchs and put together a basic recipe using your 35 lbs of cherries, and this is what I would do if I had them. The one thing about cherry wine is that you don't what the alcohol level to high or it tastes like cherry rocket fuel. Shoot for about 1.090 to 1.095 and you will be happy with the end product. Also, I usually use Cotes Des Blanc, but I also like 71b and I am using it on this years batch.

The only thing you may have to adjust slightly is the SG by adding some sugar or some water to get it where we need it. The main reason is that it is hard to judge the exact sugar content of the frozen concentrate. It also may seem weird that I am only adding 5 gallons of water (1 gallon to 7 lbs cherries) but in reality there is slightly over 1.5 gallon of liquid being added due by the dissolved sugar, and the concentrate. Also the wines I have made using 1 full gallon of water to 4-5 lbs of cherries before sugar and using no concentrate seem thin and light bodied. But if you would like to add an extra gallon of water and an additional 2 lbs of sugar to the below recipe, it will still come out great.

Also, Montmorency Cherries usually have plenty of acid in them so I am pretty sure you will not have to worry about adding that. I am not sure why I used it in my first batch, but I have not needed it in any of the future batches I have made.

Let us know how it is going, and what you ened up doing..
Terry

Montmorency Cherry Recipe, makes approx 8 gallons

35lbs Montmorency Cherries (or other sour pie cherries)
7 Cans Old Orchard frozen 100% Apple Cherry juice concentrate for body and color.
(100% White Grape Juice can be used but the Apple Cherry juice adds some color to the wine)
11 lbs white sugar SG-1.090
5 gallons US of Water.
8 tsps nutrient
1 tsp tannin
1/4 tsp of potassium metabisulphite or (6 campden tablets crushed)
3.5 tsp Pectic Enzyme
Yeast (Cotes Des Blanc) (Premier Cuvee) (71B) or other wine Yeast

Later
potassium metabisulphite
potassium sorbate


Pick and only use ripe Cherries, discard any bad, yellow or bruised fruit, then destem and place in primary. (Pitting is not necessary if you are careful not to break any of the pits) Crush cherries with hands or large potato smasher being careful not to break pits if you did not pit them before. While crushing add in the (6 crushed campden tablets) or the (1/4tsp potassium Meta), whichever you are using.

Open and add the cans of Old Orchard Apple Cherry Concentrate,

Disolve the sugar in 2 gallons of boiling water, boil until clear. Pour boiling water over cherries, then add remaining water. Stir the must and cover primary and wait approx 12 hours.

After the 12 hours has passed Stir up must really well and draw off some liquid to check SG. It should be pretty close, but if needed add either water or additional sugar to bring SG to about 1.085 to 1.090, then add remaning ingredients except yeast. (nutrient, tannin, and pectic enzyme) Cover and wait another 12 hours then stir again and sprinkle yeast onto must and put lid on primary.

Stir and press down cap 2 to 3 times daily. When S.G. drops to 1.010 (5-8 days), use collendar or china cap to strain off fruit pulp (squeezing pulp gently to extract all remaining juice) discard fruit and siphon wine into secondary carboys. Fit airlock and let sit 2 to 3 weeks until all fermentation is entirely complete then rack off gross lees. Let wine sit for another 2 months then rack and stabilize into carboys adding (1/4 tsp potassium meta per 5-6 gallons) and 1/2 tsp Potassium Sorbate per each gallon of wine.

Rack wine every two to three months until wine is very clear.

After 8 months to a year, rack wine and sweeten slightly to taste. I find that most folks like it sweetend to around 1.015 to 1.025 give or take. But let your taste buds be your guide. To sweeten, just stir the white sugar directly into wine using a long sanitized plastic spoon. Stir until dissolved.

Let stand 30 days then filter if you like before bottling or just bottle it.

Age 9-12 months before drinking.
 

St Allie

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That sounds doable Allen..

what did you normally do with all the cherries?.. Do you can them?

If you haven't already got some bird netting.. you might want to get some beforehand.

Allie
 

Allen

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We usually have a neighborhood cherry picking party, and make pies. We have 3 trees that are 12 years old, and about 12' high.

Can we freeze them & make wine later?

We definitely have to time it just right to beat the birds.
 
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St Allie

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Freezing them works really well.. it bursts the cell wall structure and improves the juice and colour extraction. Pretty much freeze everything except citrus for winemaking.


I would be making jam and jars of brandied cherries for xmas presents..hehhehe

I can't grow cherries .. our winter isn't cold enough in auckland.


Allie
 

Allen

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Freezing them works really well.. it bursts the cell wall structure and improves the juice and colour extraction.
Good to know!

I can't grow cherries .. our winter isn't cold enough in auckland.


Allie
Well, since I have something special, I will try not to let you down, and make some AWESOME wine with it!

The neat part is, a friend of mine bought us one cherry tree when our daughter was born in 1997, as a "Birthday" gift. So, we went out & bought two more to keep it company. So...The cherry trees do have some special meaning!

Won't he be suprised when I bring him over a couple of bottles of cherry wine from the tree he bought for us, all those years ago!
 

JezterVA

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I think this is the recipe that I'll use as well. I have 17 lbs in the freezer right now. I'll just halve it and go that way. How much yeast though? No one ver gives yeast measurements. Full packet? 2 full packets?
 

Allen

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Since you "revived" this post, I'll have to give a report:

I ended up getting 62 pounds of cherries off my 3 trees :br.
I pitted, then froze for about a month. I added sugar to 1.085 SG, then fermented just the pure cherry juice, with no additives. With a little bit of back sweetening (10 tsp sugar/750ml), it came out pretty darn good.

As a matter of fact, I had a tasting at a local restaurant/wine bar, and it was a big hit. At the tasting, I had mead, cherry, Concord, and a cherry/concord blend. Personally, I liked the blend the best.
 

JezterVA

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That's awesome. I'm glad it turned out well. So how about that yeast? I'm planning on putting it in the bucket on Thursday.
 

Allen

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I used Lavlin 71-B. The reason is, cherry's dominate acid is malic acid, and 71-B is known to lower the malic acid level. One small packet will be more than enough for the size you are doing.
 

St Allie

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how many bottles did you get out of it Allen?.. and how many are left?

;)

Allie
 

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