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beeper4878

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Hi my name is Jim. And I love making wine! I've been making wine for about 3 yrs. My grandfather from what I was told made awesome wine. On my property I get about 300lbs of grapes (white, concord and some wild) a year. And it's always seemed pretty easy making wine from grapes. But this year I got a little over my head. 1st I've never used a hydromiter, 2nd I've never woried about Ph leves, and 3rd SG levels I learded the first year, there is such a thing as too much sugar.
So this year I decided to write my own way into wine. And I'll try to explain why I did certain things but keep in mind I'm just learning how to frive in making wine. So here are my notes:

Don't laugh all at once
picked 5 gal blue berry's
Juiced them to 1.5 gal
froze them melted off the pure juice
2 med size watermellons juiced
1/2 bushal fresh peaches
10 campton tabs crushed
wait 24 hrs Heat 2 lbs Frankenmuth MI honey 185 deg 5 min, skim top
6 hrs later 2.5 lbs beat sugar
Now this is my thought pattern, the Honey pluss the sugar would be the equivlent of 5 lbs of sugar under cutting the sugar needed for 10 Gallons of wine
But enough to make a good wine!
2 hrs later split into 2 5 gal carboys
It was a mistake! Should have let it sit into 2 5 gal buckets
6hrs later boild 2 cups of water and let it settle to 102 deg and added some yeast starter packer, guesing it was a dry malt type stuff and added two green red star yeast packes exceelent start
Yeist was like on fire in the carboys, left them uncapped to build yeist numbers with just paper towel taked over thier lids. Usually I use the big rubberband bouncing ballons with a couple pin holes in them. 2 days later my primary stopped. Racked wine 4 days in process added campden tab 1 per con
No luck so I went out after work and picked 30 grapes squized them and poured the juice in the carboys
bubbles formed 1 hr later
Finally bought a hydromiter and PH paper Hydrometer measured 1.000 each carboy PH little over 3.6 after adding the grapes. Squized 3 lemmons split juice to lower the PH looked between 3.4 and 3.6 added 2.5 lbs sugar to each carboy and balloned with pin holes and now it's bubbling ok for now.

This has been a nightmare for me, but please don't be afraid of hurting my feelings I need good answer and want to learn. Ty Jim
 
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forgot to tell ya all I added the sugar to 1.200 each carboy
too high. you need to start about 1.085~1.090 and let it dry out. easier to start with less and re-sweeten to taste later.

always leave in an open or covered primary (i prefer open myself) with extra room at the top. it will bubble and rise. it's yeast! think of bread dough. anyway, we don't rack into a secondary until it drops 6.5~7 points (ex. start @ 1.090 then down to 1.025). this means it's close to 10% alc/volume at that point and the wine should be protected from oxygen/spoilage. if fermentation lasts longer than 8 days and is moving really slow, add yeast nutrient and give it a stir. you can put into a carboy early, but it might slow it down. it's not bad to ferment slow, but too slow and you spoil it. hopefully the watermelon did not spoil. it's got a habit of doing so.

your pH is right.

i like how you used alot of what you had around to make a complex mix there. it will be interesting to see how it comes out. please keep us updated!
 

Wade E

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Ok Im guessing that 1.200 is a typo as Ive never seen a hydrometer that has readings that high. Probably 1.120 and yes thats very high but still dont think thats the fact as it would have never fermented down to 1.000 in 4 days IMO unless the temps were extremely high an also see that you added sulfites after 4 days and thats only going to cause a slow fermentation. Dont add sulfites until your wine is done fermenting.
 

beeper4878

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Yep 1.020 thnx. It is kind of low but it has a good flavor. I wasn't sure how much honey would affect the gravity.
 

St Allie

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Hello and welcome to the forum..

question?

how much is in a bushel?

Allie
 

beeper4878

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Just so happens I have 1 had bushel but only used half LOL. Roughly 50 to 60 peaches in a 1/2 bushal. Note bought a hydromiter after I my process started and had stopped in primary. I have no idea what the sg was at the start but primary lasted 3 days. Wine doesn't seem spoiled but look at the campdem tabs I used. I really want to learn from this so I will mail a bottle of this wine to the first six post of this forum for your advice and reviews. Ty for your help Jim
 

St Allie

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I had to ask because we just do everything by weight in NZ.. volume measurements are usually liquid.

that's metric for you!

Allie

Oh and thankyou for the offer of a bottle of the wine..to post anything my way, the freight costs would be horrendous.
 

beeper4878

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Knowlege vs Freight cost is a good trade! I can live with that. Besides I like the way you measure things Allie.
 
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