Cherry wine dr

Discussion in 'Country Fruit Winemaking' started by kardak, Jul 15, 2016.

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  1. Jul 15, 2016 #1

    kardak

    kardak

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    I started a cherry wine batch last tuesday with red wine yeast. On wednesday, bubles slowly started to come out.

    As a beginner wine maker, I am not sure about the mixture, although i checked with the hydrometer and it looks around 1.100 at first, after two days, it still measures the same. Bubling is ok but didn't make a peak after 48 hours. How long will it take for the first fermantation, do you have any idea?

    Mixture consist of:

    -40 lbs cherry
    -8 lbs white sugar
    -5 lbs water
    - yeast
    - yeast nutrient
     
  2. Jul 15, 2016 #2

    Tom

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    Is this a 6 gallon batch?

    I think you READING the hydrometer wrong



    5 lb of water? what is it in gallons
     
  3. Jul 15, 2016 #3

    salcoco

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    as water is 8 lbs per gallon can't be to much.
     
  4. Jul 15, 2016 #4

    Scooter68

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    Hate sound like a harpy but...
    Best way for us to help you is if you include enough details so we can help.

    What is the batch size?
    40 Lbs of pitted cherries or whole cherries?
    Which Yeast did you use
    How much Nutrient?
    How much Acid Blend?
    What was the starting and current pH of the must?
    How much Pectic Enzyme?
    Water added in Volume not weight
    Did you use Campden tabs or K-Meta mentioned -
    Process to prep the must
    What type container the must is in now?
    Is there a Airlock on the container or cloth cover?
    Temp in the room you have it for fermentation?

    Time is not the deciding factor in the fermentation process - Some yeasts are slow to start - some take off like rocket and a lot of other factors can vary the time it takes for fermentation.

    Sorry to be such a PITA but without this information it's almost impossible to tell what might be happening to your batch. Additionally while some things I mentioned might not affect the fermentation process itself - if you don't take the right steps now you could create a lot of work later and possibly kill some of the attributes you want in that finished wine like color, clarity and acid balance. It could come out with 14% ABV but be nasty tasting and/or pale as a white wine.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2016
  5. Jul 15, 2016 #5

    kardak

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    Sorry for the conversions. Let me give the answers:

    What is the batch size?

    15lt total amount of must from 20kg cherry. (Added water included)

    40 Lbs of pitted cherries or whole cherries?

    20kg cherries before the process.

    Which Yeast did you use

    A regular red wine yeast, not expensive but made for wine.

    How much Nutrient?

    Double tea spoon nutrient at the beginning of fermantation.

    How much Acid Blend?

    I did't add any acid.

    What was the starting and current pH of the must?

    I didn't check at the beginning but after 48 hours of bubling, i checked with the paper type ph indicator and it looks like ph is around 2.

    How much Pectic Enzyme?

    None

    Water added in Volume not weight

    Around 2.5lt total.

    Did you use Campden tabs or K-Meta mentioned -

    I used Potasyum Metasufide like half of a tea spoon.


    Process to prep the must
    What type container the must is in now?


    I have three of 5lt glass containers.



    Is there a Airlock on the container or cloth cover?


    Cloth cover.


    Temp in the room you have it for fermentation?

    Around 25 Degrees Celcius.


    Sorry for the measurement units. 5lb water is like 0.6 gallons.
     
  6. Jul 15, 2016 #6

    kardak

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    I want it to be solid, that's why i didn't dilute it as possible as i can. But is this a problem for fermentation i don't know.
     
  7. Jul 16, 2016 #7

    Scooter68

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    So roughly you have about 4 Gallons
    1) Not enough Nutrient - you don't have to add it all at first but 1 tsp per gallon is normal amount
    2) Type of Wine Yeast - there are many and it does make a bit of a difference - Cherries may be red but the yeast should be one suited for Fruits like cherries not just grapes.
    3) A pH of 2 is very acidic recommend level is 3.4-3.6 for most fruit wines
    4) Don't know the exact dosage of Potassium metabisulfite but I think I saw something on the order of 1/4 tsp per gallon.
    5) No mention of Pectic Enzyme and although it may not bother your fermentation, not having it in there now could make your finished wine very hazy/cloudy.
    6 How much did you crush the cherries before you started the must. Cherries are a bit tough to mash with the pits in and without a good mashing you aren't going to get good, reliable initial readings on the SG, and pH for starters. Until those cherries have released their 'juices' your measurements are going to be unreliable. Were they Pie Cherries (Tart) or Sweet Cherries. Sugar content is very different between the 2 types. So an uncrushed sweet cherry is eventually going to release a lot more sugar which will up your SG and eventually kill off your wine yeast if it isn't able to handle a higher Alcohol level.

    So you are short on nutrient and the K-Meta. Assuming you waited at least 12 hours after adding the K-Meta before tossing the yeast into the must. The nutrient may not be an issue but certainly you will need to add more at some point. The glass containers are carboy shaped with small openings or more open like a bucket? The amount of oxygen for initial startup of the fermentation will be low if you have small mouthed containers.

    Not trying to toss cold water your process but the sooner you adjust things the better. The pH needs to be checked again - at 2 you are very low and at 2.5 still lower than normally expected. Also check the temp of the must itself - 25 C is on the high side for some yeasts (that's why the exact yeast type is important to know) and the internal temp on an active primary fermentation can be well above the room temp - thus killing the yeast if you are already at or near it's max temp.

    You should look up recipes for Cherry Wine as soon as you can. Look at several and you will see some variation but the important things like the Pectic Enzyme, Yeast type, Nutrient and a couple of other items can make a difference in how your wine will turn out.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2016
  8. Jul 16, 2016 #8

    cintipam

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    He is NOT low on kmeta. Suggested dose is 1/4 tsp per 5-6 gallons. Using anything like you are suggesting will stall fermentation for quite a while, not to mention making the levels so high you could taste them.

    If you are correct and he has approx 4 gallons of must and per his statement he used 1/2 tsp he is approx 275% too high.

    Cherries are considered high in pectin, so it would be beneficial to add pectic enzyme to reduce haze.

    Pam in cinti
     
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  9. Jul 16, 2016 #9

    Scooter68

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    "If you are correct and he has approx 4 gallons of must and per his statement he used 1/2 tsp he is approx 275% too high."

    As I Said I don't use K-meta - My input was based on a post by someone else about the amount to use. I checked again and, yes 1/4 tsp for 5 gallons. YOU are correct and he overdosed based on what he has said. Further he hasn't said how long he waited before adding whatever 'red wine yeast' he used. From your input he may have to wait a several days (Assuming with cloth covered buckets) before the yeast will survive in the must.

    He has 3.96 gallons by a standard conversion from Liters to Gallons

    MORE important points now are how much crushing of the cherries was done. If little was done then until that skin broken down or they are mashed well there isn't a lot of contact between the cherry 'meat' and the yeast, or any other additives AND his SG reading is going to be off. AND what 'glass containers is he using. A 6 gallon plastic fermentation bucket would be much better than splitting the must in 3 glass carboys -the K-Meta can better dissipate in a more open container and from your comment he will need to let that happen before restarting the fermentation.

    By this time Tuesday to Saturday the toxicity should have faded IF it's been well ventilated so he could also just re-pitch the yeast.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2016
  10. Jul 17, 2016 #10

    kardak

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    Thank you for the answers.

    I have 3 of 5lt jars with %80 capacity full. Today is the 5th day of fermantation, it looks a little bit slow but ok to me. I read specific gravity, and it is around 1.08
    I added 1/2 tea spoon more yeast nutrient to each jar, this morning. Ph measures around 2 with the ph paper (i don't know if i can trust that paper)

    I pressed the cheerries with a home made press that i made, then added 1/2 of the tailings, i collected %75 of the stones. It seems i can't find pectic enzymys here locally. Is it vital?

    Here are some pictures:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  11. Jul 17, 2016 #11

    dorfie

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    I would not trust the paper for a pH reading. With a colored liquid it is difficult to read, plus they are relatively notorious for not being precise.

    Do you know the variety of cherries that you used? if you don't know the specific variety, do you know if they are sour or sweet cherries?

    Also while pectic enzyme isn't "vital" to make wine, it does make the wine better quality, and helps the process along. It assists in breaking down the fruit on a molecular level, giving more contact, so more juice and flavor. And since it breaks down the carbohydrate pectin it promotes a clear finished wine. I would advise you to try to get your hands on some, it maybe called pectinase.
     
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  12. Jul 17, 2016 #12

    Scooter68

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    Pectic Enzyme will help remove the unwanted Pectin in your wine and along with it helping it clear. It's important enough that I would look for it and get it in there within the next 30 days if possible. You don't want to resort to fining agents if you can avoid them - they can rob your wine of color and flavor not to mention additional costs and steps to use them properly.

    Hard to tell but you must looks like it has a lot of solids in it which is great in one way (Getting all the flavor available from the cherries) but it means that your end quantity may be a lot less than 4 gallons. Don't think that it would drop to 2 gallons but potentially down to 3 gallons. Of course you can top it back up with water but that will dilute your Alcohol content. With that many cherries you probably could have easily aimed at a 5 gallon batch and still had a very flavorful wine. BUT that's water under the bridge - move on. It does sound like your fermentation is moving forward. Getting the temp down would be one thing you could do - Most wine yeasts don't do well at anything near an 80 degree air temp because the internal temp can rise well above what the yeast can live with. Since you are at 75 degrees F you are potentially pushing the limits.

    Remember to stir a couple of times a day and keep covered with cloth. Photos don't show much of a foam or cap to the must but if you just stirred it before taking a picture that could be the reason. 80% full jars would not permit much foaming so you are fortunate not to have experienced an overflow, from gas and foam build up. Also I'd fit individual cloth covers a little more tightly to each container - You don't want any flies or bugs getting into your must.

    As Dorfie mentions paper pH test strips are difficult to read - A pH Meter can be had for under $20.00 and as long as you check the calibration with buffer solutions, they read very accurately. Here's one I just found that is identical in appearance to the one I use: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00XN4111W/?tag=skimlinks_replacement-20

    Finally - have you tasted it yet? It's early in the process but you should be starting to taste the presence of alcohol now. Tasting is just another way check progress of the must.

    Looks like you're off to a good start there.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 24, 2018
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  13. Jul 17, 2016 #13

    cintipam

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    Kardak, wanted to say you did a very nice job with that press. Almost a work of art.

    Not much more to say except that I believe your wine will be fine without the pectic enzyme. It could be cloudy, but cloudy wines taste just fine.

    One natural source of Pectic Enzyme is papaya skins if you have access to them. It is in the green layer just under the skin. Since the heat of fermentation actually deactivates PE, I'd do this AFTER fermentation is complete. I've occasionally had to use additional PE after fermentation, and it works just fine. Personally I'd peel 1 or 2 papayas, then soak the peelings in enough water to cover the peelings premixed with 1/8 tsp kmeta for a couple hours. I'd then strain the peels to minimize wine dilution by unneeded water and throw them into your new wine. I'm making this up but I feel that kmeta soak should kill any nasties, and adding the skins after fermentation is complete means that dose of kmeta they will add won't stall the fermentation. It could actually serve as the required post fermentation Kmeta dose if done this way.

    Hope this helps.

    Pam in cinti
     
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  14. Jul 17, 2016 #14

    kardak

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    Thanks for all the replies. This is a great forum.
    Cherries taste more like sour. I stir it 5-6 times a day.
    May be i can change the place of the jars to a colder place.
    I'll look for the papaya fruit but i've never seen it around.

    Last year, in my first grape wine try, i didn't add any yeast for a natural wild fermantation, again %80 full and it had an overflow. Natural grape yeast was stronger i guess. But somewhere i read that, wine yeast bubling is quiet comparing to wild yeast. Isn't it?

    By the way, my press is a diy wine press but the basket is just a regular office type dustbin :)
    And it served well at first but it was warped later. I need a better basket. May be a stainless one but it will be expensive i guess.

    I'll find a better gizmo to check ph, but i wonder if it affects the speed of fermantation.
    What if it has really 2 ph, is it a problem?
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2016
  15. Jul 17, 2016 #15

    cintipam

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    Kardak, it your PH were really 2.0 the wine would not be at all pleasant to drink. Early on I made a wine that was maybe 2.5 (less acidy than 2.0) and because I really like sour things I was sipping it. After about an hour I lost the skin from the insides of my cheeks. That was sour!

    PH is also important for the health of your yeast (too much acid and they can't live) so if you have fermentation then the yeast is living. It is also important for the long term safe storage of your wine. Folks with all the technical tools can determine how much Kmeta to add to keep wine safe based on their exact PH. Too high a number needs more Kmeta than low numbers, 3.2-3.8 seems to be the best range for most wines.

    Since your wine is fermenting and it tastes good to you, I think you are fine. If your wine tasted "flat", lacking zing, then that usually means the wine needs more acid.

    I have never used natural yeast, so can't comment on how strong the fermentation is. But different wine yeasts do differ in their ferments. To be honest I would personally have a bit less must in each jar just in case it does foam up and over. Hopefully you can get a big food grade bucket and keep all your must in one place in the future. I got several free from grocery deli's and local bakeries. They get icing, whipped cream, and other products in large buckets that are perfect. Just avoid any bucket that had strong smelling products in them like pickles.

    I believe your wine will be fine. I have a wine right now that is a bit cloudy but tastes so good I plan to leave it like that instead of trying to get it perfectly clear. I don't want to lose any of the wonderful flavor it has right now. My wine, my choice.

    Pam in cinti
     
  16. Jul 17, 2016 #16

    kardak

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    I haven't tasted it yet, i tasted it when it was just cherry. I also made some jam with the remanings, and it tastes delicious, sour also. Tomorrow i'll, and write back. Also i'll check specif gravity.
    I'll buy a ph tester soon, i like these chemical materials and playing with variations.
    Why is just one bottle is better than 3, just for make it simple or anything else?
     
  17. Jul 17, 2016 #17

    cintipam

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    If you are able to get free buckets I've seen plans somewhere on WMT for making a bucket press out of a couple same size buckets that stack.

    I think it is both more simple and gives the yeast a better chance to be happy when all the sugar is in one container, and all the yeast also. When split up you might not have a healthy yeast colony in one bottle, and too big a colony in the next one. Plus with a big bucket it generally doesn't overflow.

    It's nice you like the science and the numbers. I do OK, but my hubby really likes that stuff. Until I asked him to help me figure out PH using those blasted PH test kits. Once he spent 3 hours trying to help me, and we both got different results. He retested and got even more different results. The next day he bought me a fairly expensive PH tester that takes less than 30 seconds and is very accurate.

    I love sour cherries. I have about 5 diff varieties in my backyard.

    Jam! Now that was a brilliant idea!

    Pam in cinti
     
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  18. Jul 17, 2016 #18

    kardak

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    I had planted one cherry tree in the garden last spring but it looked very tired, almost dead last month, and i digged to see its roots and found these bastards. They have eaten all the roots.
    I killed them and planted it again but, looks almost dead now.
    Do you know a natural way to fight them?



    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Jul 17, 2016 #19

    dorfie

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    Kardak- Poor tree!
    I am by far not an entomologist, but from the pictures that you posted those look like larval forms of one of a species of June Beetle (Phyllophaga spp). I can't be completely sure without having some more info.
    If it is June beetles the only "natural" way I have heard of killing them is releasing milky spore disease into the soil. the bacterium infects the grub, paralyzing and killing it. you can find it at some garden centers.
    As for your tree, I mean it's roots were eaten (maybe still are being eaten) and it got dug up, it won't like either of those things. I would release the bacterium if you can fine it, and try to keep your tree watered. It won't look great this year, but if it lives it might be able to pull it together for next year. Keep your fingers crossed!
     
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  20. Jul 17, 2016 #20

    Scooter68

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    Great thing about milky spore is that once you innoculate your area properly it will spread over time to protect the entire area. Look up the quantities needed based on how large an area you have and remember initially you just need to protect the immediate root area of the trees at risk for the grubs worms.

    Acidity (pH) is challenging topic because there are at least 3 common acid types in wines and they each affect it differently -BUT for you purposes two things are important - 1) A good check on the actual acidity (Lower number more acidic of course) to see if it's really at 2 or below 2.5. Below 2.5 is very likely to make the wine very harsh and perhaps kill or slow fermentation.
    2) The acidity of a wine must usually changes during the process. I've had some pretty acidic wine must (2.58 - 2.78) that actually mellowed up on their own and ended up about 3.18 which is still a bit acidic but definitely drinkable.

    Now for some fun, if you have the time, cruise some Vineyard sites and take a close look at their wines (95% are going to be grape wines of course) I did once and found the pH levels on their bottled wines were in some cases really pretty low like 3.1 SO even the big vintners have to deal with it and they apparently find that a low pH level isn't really a killer.

    One last thing - The left over solids (gross lees) from some fruit wines can actually make decent (Although 'yeasty tasting') ice cream toppings. (Just get the rest of those cherry pits out) Of course they keep well in the fridge because after all they have the same alcohol content as your wine basically) Can make eating a little ice cream an "Adult" dessert. :db
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2016

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