Elderberry wine?

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Crashlaz

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i have approx. 8-12 lbs of elderberries that i picked and froze and am now cleaning off what stems i didn't get during harvest. my question is how important is it that i get all the tiny little pieces of stem off the berries? can i just get the huge stems and the majority of the little stems off and it will turn out or do i need to get every little stem piece? Also if after i cold soak, crush, and ferment then strain them how much weight of skins and such left will be sufficient to make another batch with some other fruit added?
 

Julie

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as long as you get the larger stems it is pretty much impossible to get all those tiny little stems. You know you aren't getting much wine with 8-12 lbs of berries?
 

Crashlaz

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trying to make a 3 gallon batch, i have a few quarts of frozen black berries im adding to it. i realize that doesnt make much difference.
 

Crashlaz

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i have 3 5 gram packets of wine active dry wine yeast for this 3 gallon batch, do i use them all or how do i know how much yeast to use?
 

Julie

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One packet is plenty, adding the blackberries going to give it a nice touch. Make sure you write down everything you add and all steps, I have a feeling this going to turn out pretty good and you are gonna want to duplicate it.
 

Crashlaz

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recipe im using has me simmer water, sugar, and crushed berries but i dont have a pot big enough for it all. can i just boil/simmer the water and sugar and pour over berries? or should i split it up between to pots to allow berries to simmer?i ended up with 12lbs of berries btw.
 

Julie

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Don't boil the berries, just heat up the water, disolve the sugar in it and pour onto the berries. Actually you only need to heat up enough water to disolve the sugar.
 

Scooter68

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Normally one doesn't cook the berries at all. Crushing them is sufficient. The boiling water for sugar is all you need. I would minimize the amount of water used to the a basic simple syrup mix based on 2 parts sugar to 1 part water (2 cups sugar to 1 cup of water) Crush the berries well before you add the Simple Syrup, then if needed top up your batch with water to the target quantity. For most folks they like to use as little water as possible HOWEVER, Elderberries are usually pretty stout by all reports I've heard with some saying they use as few as 2-3 pounds of berries per gallon. I'm sure someone with experience with Elderberries can give you a better idea on the exact amounts.
 

Crashlaz

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ok thanks everyone, the recipe i have says 9-15 lbs berries, i have 12, and 10 quarts water. too much water/not enough?
 

Crashlaz

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ok i have got my batch ready for cold soaking, but i have a question about tannin. i have a bottle of tannin labeled "wine tannin" from LD Carlson Co. product of slovakia. and i don't know if i should be adding any at all or when to add? not sure of type of tannin its is. anyone have any input on this bottle or if elderberry wine should have any tannin added?
 

Scooter68

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As to adding tannin suggest you read this: http://www.winemakingtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=47633

Any particular reason you are cold soaking this batch? Why it may produce more color, it most of my berry wines have no problem extracting the color from the fruit. Blackberries, Blueberries, and Black Raspberries I've used have ALL produced wines with great color without any cold soak time. The one thing cold soak might do is to permit more time for sugars to be released from the berries.

So whether or not you add tannin or cold soak the one one you want to do is to get the wine back to a favorable temp BEFORE pitching your yeast AND if it's been cold soaked, check your SG and pH before you pitch the yeast.
 

Tnuscan

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ok i have got my batch ready for cold soaking, but i have a question about tannin. i have a bottle of tannin labeled "wine tannin" from LD Carlson Co. product of slovakia. and i don't know if i should be adding any at all or when to add? not sure of type of tannin its is. anyone have any input on this bottle or if elderberry wine should have any tannin added?

If your wanting more than the berries have to offer and aren't sure you could add a pinch, 1/16th to 1/8th of a teaspoon, and go from there.

They may have enough on their own, later if you wish to do a bench test, get some finishing tannin from morewine. You can add this after fermentation.

Most elderberry recipes don't call for it.
 

Stressbaby

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As to adding tannin suggest you read this: http://www.winemakingtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=47633

Any particular reason you are cold soaking this batch? Why it may produce more color, it most of my berry wines have no problem extracting the color from the fruit. Blackberries, Blueberries, and Black Raspberries I've used have ALL produced wines with great color without any cold soak time. The one thing cold soak might do is to permit more time for sugars to be released from the berries.

So whether or not you add tannin or cold soak the one one you want to do is to get the wine back to a favorable temp BEFORE pitching your yeast AND if it's been cold soaked, check your SG and pH before you pitch the yeast.

I think he is following Hank Shaw's recipe, linked above. It's a good recipe. Cold soak works well, esp for elderberry. The only fruit wine I can make with the inky color of a cab is elderberry using a cold soak. Blackberry and blueberry don't even come close.
 

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