Quantcast

High Gravety

Wine Making Talk

Help Support Wine Making Talk:

Joined
Feb 19, 2017
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Ok, I am new here but not new to the brewing scene. I have always preferred desert wines, meads or spirits so that is what I like and make. I have read in many places that high gravity must is hard to start or just never starts. I have found that to be nothing but a myth! I regularly have a starting gravity in excess of 1.170 with no problems getting started. I was wondering if anyone here has any experience with high gravity must or would like to share info. Thanks!
 

Noontime

Custom Label Printing & Design
Joined
Oct 7, 2007
Messages
676
Reaction score
284
It definitely depends on temperature as well, since many people struggle with ordinary levels of sugar. We live in S. Florida and never have any issues with fermenting. But still we like to step feed the yeast when making high alcohol wines. The osmotic pressure of the excessive sugar can stress the yeast cells, and it also gives us a chance to monitor how the yeast is handling the situation (so if the fermentation stalls out we don't have massive amounts of residual sugar left). But if it works for you and you're happy with the wines, then that's all that matters my friend!
 

BernardSmith

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2011
Messages
3,322
Reaction score
1,431
Location
Saratoga Springs
This is my year for experimenting with short meads (low ABV meads), but it seems to me that a simple solution to the problem of osmotic pressure is to step feed the sugar to the yeast and not fill their plates with several servings at the one time. If you add half pounds of honey to every gallon of must of a normal starting gravity of say, 1.100, each time the yeast takes the gravity down close to 1.000 you then allow the yeast to deal with all the sugar it can handle solely determined by its tolerance to alcohol. Each 1/2 lb /gallon will raise the gravity by about 17 or 18 points also giving you some control over the final sweetness of the mead by limiting the sweetness to about (let's say), a maximum of about 20 points. You cannot accurately predict the precise tolerance of this or that batch of yeast despite the published data but by step feeding you have the ability to manage the fermentation and control the maximum sweetness..
 

Mortalpawn

Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2017
Messages
33
Reaction score
4
I regularly start melomels in the 1.140s and 1.150s with no problems. If you properly hydrate your yeast with GoFerm and aerate with pure oxygen it can insulate the cells against osmotic shock. The key is providing enough sterols and lipids early in the fermentation.

With 71b yeast and Fermaid-o staggered nutrients I usually get 15.5% alcohol before the yeast peters out from alcohol poisoning in about two weeks. Most are quite drinkable after 60 days, though I usually age for 90.
 

hounddawg

Dawg
Joined
Oct 23, 2014
Messages
2,400
Reaction score
1,591
Location
very N.E. Arkansas in the instep of MO, BOOTHILL,,
I like high ABV an SWEET, as took first few has stated step feeding really helps, as for yeasts, I make country wines and one mead at a year bulk aging so far, but I keep two yeasts, EC-1118 an K1V-1116, BUT I do not make fancy grape wines, I like sweet fruit an berry wines that have kick and is sweet,
Best of luck to you an remember
YOU ONLY HAVE TO PLEASE YOURSELF AND YOUR BETTER HALF IF YOU HAVE ONE,, LOL
Dawg
 
Top