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cassia bud?

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wingnutooa

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My girlfriend just got me the equipment to make wine for christmas but my 2nd cousin has been making it for about 60 years.

i've got a pretty good grasp on everything however i'm having trouble with one of the ingredients of this recipe i'm going to start out with.

it calls for 20 cassia buds for 1 gallon, however i'm making 5 (100 buds?) it says "or" cinnamon bark. however it does not give an amount.

my question is, does anyone know how much cinnamon bark to use to equal what it calls for in cassia bud?




couple other questions.

is it necessary to boil my sugar water with my 5 pounds of raisens and spices as it calls for?

this wouldnt be a problem if i was just making a gallon but i dont have a 5 gallon pot i can boil all this in. it also calls for campden tablets.

isnt boiling and using campden tablets sort of like wearing a belt with suspenders?




it also calls for 8 pounds of pressed apples or 24 oz of frozen juice. my lack of a press or financial backing to rent one forces me into the frozen juice path.

do i still need to use pectic enzyme with the concentrate?




and one last question.

how much air do i leave in the top of the carboy.
 

TheTooth

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I'm new enough to winemaking that I don't have answers to a lot of your questions, but I can help with the cider/juice question.

I've been making a pretty good hard cider with Tree Top's "Three Apple Blend" apple juice for a couple years now. It's fairly inexpensive and sold at most megamarts... in California anyway. I think it's much better than any attempt I made with frozen concentrates.
 

wingnutooa

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thats good to know. what whas the difference in results?

i already have my supplies so i wont change anything with this batch but if i like it at all i know that it cant get anything but better using juice or fresh apples.
 

TheTooth

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The main difference between the concentrates and juice was flavor. The frozen concentrates were fermentable, but they didn't seem to retain the same amount of apple flavor and aroma when fermentation was complete.

There is also a difference between juices (whether by concentrate, or fresh) based on the apples used in the blend. Different apples contribute different flavors and aromas to the must. There are sweet apples, tart apples, etc...

When you are crushing your own, you can control how much of each type of apple is in your cider. I don't have a press, however, so I have to buy my juice from somewhere for now.

So far, my juice of choice is the three apple blend from Tree Top. Your choice may vary. I encourage you to try different options and see what you like best. :)
 

wingnutooa

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well my SO and i dont particularly prefer sweet beverages, part of me wanting this equipment was so i could experiment and make a Mead that wasnt quite nausieatingly sweet.

so when i went to get the frozen juice i looked at the ingredients and narrowed it down to two. both of which had no additives and one of which said "unsweetened"

i dont know for sure if the other was unsweetened or not but i chose the generic brand over Tree Top.

i doubt i'll be using the frozen juice method again, its just the easiest way to get started right now. i'm not really worried about the fruit buisiness end of wine making i just want to get a batch under my belt as far as the process and chemicals, preparation and sanitization, The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle. The chalice from the palace has the brew that is true. and so on and so forth...
 

Luc

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Most raisins are sulphite treated to prevent spoiling.
Too much sulphite will stuck fermentation.

Treat raisins as follows:
- rinse them well
- rinse again
- rinse again
- put them in a bowl of water
- drain the water after 24 hours

The raisins will by then have swollen and will be much
easier to chop up.

Next sanitise a nylon stocking with a sulphite solution
and put the chopped raisins in there and then into the juice.
That way they will not be floating around while the yeast still
have access to them.

You can find the whole procedure and explanation
here:
http://wijnmaker.blogspot.com/2007/11/rozijnen-raisins.html

Boiling and sulphiting are two different things.
By boiling you will kill all nasties which are in the fluid.
By using sulphite you will prevent nasties floating in the
air, clinging on your spoon etc etc etc to spoil the wine
in the future.

Hope this helps.

Luc
 

TheTooth

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My wife and I also tend to like our beverages on the dry side. Ciders will typically ferment out to dry unless you add so much sugar that you kill the yeast before they can convert all the sugar.

With Luc's raisin info and your 2nd cousin's recipe, it sounds like you've got everything pretty much figured out. I'm sure this will come out great. Good luck with your first batch!
 

Sacalait

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There is no need to boil 5gals of water. Bring to a boil about 1 1/2gal of water and add the sugar and raisins (this is after you've desulfited the raisins) making sure all of the sugar has dissolved. If you want a glucose/fructose mixture (this aids in the fermentation but isn't necessary) squeeze the juice of a lemon or orange in the hot sugar water. You can pour this mixture over the apples and add the additional water to bring it up to the desired level. Allow all to cool and add the chemicals less the yeast. In 24hrs add the yeast.

Can't comment on the cassia buds...never heard of them.
 

wingnutooa

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well i feel pretty confident with how everything went last night. we finished everything around 11:00.

added the acid blend, yeast nutrient, and tannin.

waited till this morning and added the pectic enzyme (about 85 degrees) and tomorrow morning will add the yeast.

one question is the book mentions mixing the yeast with a little sugar water to activate it.

is there a method for this? the book says nothing clearer than that.



:edit:

i have a packet of Montrachet wine yeast. if my SG is too high i'm understanding that this might not be good enough. i would have to get a different yeast.

i cant recall the names off hand but there were a couple options. one was a champagne yeast.

does this sound accurate?
 
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Sacalait

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What is the SG? Montrachet is a good yeast if the SG isn't too high.

To make a yeast starter draw a little (2oz) luke warm water and add the yeast to it. In 10-20min. the yeast should be foaming and you can add either a little sugar or some of the must to it. Give this 10-20min. and add it to your must...that's all there is to it.
 

wingnutooa

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i think it might be a little high. it hasnt really cooled enough to get an accurate reading, i'll check it after work.

i checked it just for fun last night and it was about 1.120 i think, first time using it and i was just trying to see how it worked and how easy it would be to read.

it was also about 130 degrees at the time too.



i found this info

There are different schools of thought here. You could activate the yeast following the directions on the packet. Another method of activating the yeast is to place 1 teaspoon of sugar into a separate bowl. Add 1/4 cup of hot water (100-110 degrees Fahrenheit). Add the yeast and stir briefly. Let sit for 10 minutes. The yeast should become very frothy. However, simply sprinkling the yeast on top of the juice and sugar mixture will give you a higher live cell count than re-hydrating in most cases, and will be far less trouble.



from here: http://www.wikihow.com/Brew-Cheap-Wine

the higher live cell count is intriguing. does this sound accurate? and is he referring to adding it straight to the must?


i also found this rather interesting as my book says nothing about it.

http://brewersroundtable.com/fermentation-temps-t954.html
 
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Sacalait

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Either way it's your call and will both work, I just like doing it the way I explained...it's never failed me. Don't know about a higher cell count. Once the yeast has activated and have something to feed on it's off to the races with them multiplying.
 

Luc

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Yeats cells will multiply in the must.
So if you start with a sachet and half off the cells do
not survive, after about an hour or so they will
have multiplied to the original amount.
After 2 hours it will have doubled etc etc etc.

So I always make 24 hours upfront a yeast starter.
That way I will have loads and loads of healthy yeast cells invading the must at the same time.

Take a liter apple juice, add 120 gram sugar, add 2 gram acid, add some nutrient and boil this to kill all nasties, let it cool down to hand-warm and add the yeast. After 24 hours add this to the must.

The complete procedure is described here:
http://wijnmaker.blogspot.com/2007/08/gist-starter-yeast-starter.html

Never fails me.

Luc
 

wingnutooa

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ok so when i stuck the hydrometer in the first time i misread it.

anyways.

when i added the pectic enzyme yesterday my must was at 85*. i think thats bad.

so i waited till this morning and it was 75*. i re-added the pectic enzyme and re tested the SG

SG was 1.136 i added .002 for temp correction and its 1.138.

i will add the yeast tomorrow morning.

i think i'll just follow the directions on the back of the package. i dont want to wait an extra 24 hours to add the yeast. not knocking your method because it sounds great but i dont think its quite necessary.


i feel pretty confident with all the readings and the way things are going. i'm sure i'll be happy with this batch.

EDIT: oh i forgot to mention, i just used a whole cinnamon stick instead of the cassia buds. i figured its not a critical thing just there for a little flavor and the amount wouldn't help nor hinder anything.
 
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