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ctuttle3d

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Saturday afternoon I started a batch of watermelon wine using this recipe (I hope it attached). I mixed all the ingredients Saturday, and added a packet of yeast on Sunday afternoon, I forgot to read the instructions on the yeast, and didn’t rehydrate it..... so later that evening I hydrated a quarter packet of yeast as the packages are good for 5 gallons and I’m only doing 1, and added it...... when I checked on it Monday morning there were no bubbles in my airlock, same thing this morning, (Tuesday), tonight I stopped at the local brew shop to buy a hydrometer, I have no starting SG, and he said maybe yeast energizer would help......

When I got home, I checked on the must and it STINKS, and the SG was less than 1.010..... I spoke with a friend and he said to try adding a cup of sugar to try and jump start the fermentation..... I did that about 4 hours ago and still see zero signs of fermentation......

What do I do? Wait a little longer? Dump it and start over?

Any advise is greatly appreciated
 

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dralarms

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Watermelon is a hard one to start with. Mine spoiled before the yeast ever had a chance. You might have better luck steam juicing it and starting a yeast starter so they have a chance to multiply to a level before it goes bad
 

dralarms

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If it smells rancid then yes. But if it smells yeasty then I’d wait. The only way I got watermelon to come out was to buy concentrated juice from www.homewinery.com , great people to deal with. I get about 12 concentrated juices every year from them.
 

ctuttle3d

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I might have accidentally reported your reply when I clicked the link and I truly didn’t mean to..... thank you for your help, it’s hard to describe the smell, it’s kind of a rotten yeasty smell..... and the must looks like pepto.
 

dralarms

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I might have accidentally reported your reply when I clicked the link and I truly didn’t mean to..... thank you for your help, it’s hard to describe the smell, it’s kind of a rotten yeasty smell..... and the must looks like pepto.
Mine looked like chunks of pink stuff mixed in with the juice and smelled awful. I couldn’t get it out of the house fast enough. If yours doesn’t smell that bad I’d leave it a few days, the yeast may be working in the background
 

Rob6578

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I'd dump and start new if you don't have to much invested, but some times it can smell bad the first few days and then be OK, I think that has more to do with wild yeast taking over but I'm no expert by any means, and the wild yeast isn't really a bad thing as long as it starts up before it gets to bad...some of those lower yeast take long time to start and ferment slow also not always a good thing, normal environment temp can make a big difference to or if it flex a lot (80° in the day 50° at night) type I'd say if it doesn't start good enough to your liking in next few days start over, also a good yeast is champion yeast like the 1118 it doesn't take no for an answer and can handle up to 18% alcohol I aim for 17-17½ and run it dry almost always get 17 lol but you can stop ferment any time and add less sugar to make 8-10-13% and back sweet if you desire, I've never made watermelon but I have tried mixed berry type and just never took even when it did smelled so bad I have to dump em, one almost made me puke when i tried a sip that was 6 weeks of trying to start then ferment was horrible [emoji23] but I've had some great ones since, haven't tried any mixed berries again yet tho...don't be discharged it gets easier
 

ctuttle3d

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I checked on it the other night and gagged when I smelled it. I ended up dumping it, I’m gonna try again next week. Maybe not watermelon, I might try a Kit of some kind, or order grape juice off the Internet
 

Rob6578

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You can get Welches grape juice or apple juice from any store also works great to practice with just get all natural with no added sugar (store brand works to) what ever is on sale lol Ive done apple, white grape and red grape all come good, you don't need to add Camden to this juice because its not fresh fruit (you could if you want just add wait 12-24 hrs then pitch the yeast ) I always aim for the dryer side side future out what yeast your using and whether or not its good for red white or both then find what alcohol it can handle and prep for that can always back sweeten later good luck and have fun with it
 

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