How long to wait before chapitalizing cranberry?

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Morgan

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Just crushed and protected my cranberry must. I used 21 lbs of cranberries (frozen, thawed and crushed by hand), 5 lbs of raisins (chopped), and water to make 5.5 gallons. Added enzymes (trying some Lallzyme and Opti-red instead of pectic) and SO2 to 50 ppm.

My question is: I know I will need to add sugar to bring up my specific gravity, but I'm fairly confident that all the available sugar in my fruit has not yet been thoroughly mixed into the water. Thus, when I find that my specific gravity is 1.040, I assume that is an artificially low number. How long should I wait before accepting what my hydrometer is telling me and adding sugar accordingly? 24 hours? Longer?

Also, any input on yeast selection? I have EC 1118 and K1 v1116 on hand. Jack Keller says 1118 is the yeast of choice for cranberries but I understand it can taste a bit odd sometimes. On the other hand I know cranberry can be a bear to get started. Hoping someone has an opinion or some experience with this! Thanks
 

RegionRat

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I just started a batch the other night. Frozen and crushed berries. I added sugar to SG of 1.080, let it sit 24hrs before pitching yeast. The SG jumped up, I cant find my notes, but it was in the 90's, it did go up though. It really doesnt matter to me as long as the finished ABV is at or above 10%.

From what I have read you should make a starter for your yeast. I made mine with Montrachet
yeast, 1TBS sugar, 1/4tsp nutrient and 1 cup warm water. I then sprinkled the yeast on top. When it starts to bubble add 1/2 cup must and another 1/4 cup every hour or so for a few hrs. Let it work for a few hours then pitch it. The must is bubbling away now.

RR
 

Morgan

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Very cool. I'll be interested to compare notes with you as our wine progresses. I think I'll wait, check SG and add sugar in 24 hours.

What was the pH on yours? Did you use pectic enzyme?
 

Morgan

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Just read your other thread. Gonna be curious about the VitaMix'd batch and the seeds! I was lusting after a vitamix today... I chopped the raisins with my little food processor and smoke came out of it! Had to put it outside I was afraid it would catch fire.
 

RegionRat

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Very cool. I'll be interested to compare notes with you as our wine progresses. I think I'll wait, check SG and add sugar in 24 hours.

What was the pH on yours? Did you use pectic enzyme?
Sadly I don't have a PH meter, yet. I used test strips and it was between 3.2 and 3.6.

Yes I used 1/2 tsp Pectic Enzyme per gallon.
 

Morgan

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pH sounds good! I have a Milwaukee PH55 which was pretty reasonable on Amazon. I'll check mine tomorrow after the sugar is added and let you know what the pH is. I'm basically just following directions for a red wine at this point, I really want this cranberry to turn out nice.

image-3764849631.jpg

This is what my must looks like... Hoping the picture attaches from my phone.

Are you planning to do MLF? Keller says that cranberries are high in malic acid so no need to add acid, especially with an expectedly low pH, buy i think it would be theoretically possible, but I think I read either on here or on winepress that MLF on cranberry can strip some flavor. I haven't decided what I want to do yet.
 

RegionRat

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I plan on just letting the sugar ferment out rack it when needed and bulk age it for 6 or so months. Thats all.
 

derunner

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pH sounds good! I have a Milwaukee PH55 which was pretty reasonable on Amazon. I'll check mine tomorrow after the sugar is added and let you know what the pH is. I'm basically just following directions for a red wine at this point, I really want this cranberry to turn out nice.

View attachment 6122

This is what my must looks like... Hoping the picture attaches from my phone.

Are you planning to do MLF? Keller says that cranberries are high in malic acid so no need to add acid, especially with an expectedly low pH, buy i think it would be theoretically possible, but I think I read either on here or on winepress that MLF on cranberry can strip some flavor. I haven't decided what I want to do yet.
I saw the other thread too. I was wondering if a food grinder might be the best way crush cranberries. We had some holiday cooked cranberry salads we mad and we always used the food grinder to crush them. In those recipes we would also grind in an orange and half its rind for litle sweet to go with the sour cranberries. I wonder how that would work for wine.

the other part of this is you heat up the cranberries with white sugar, it pulls out a lot of juice. Our salad recipe boiled them and then added geletin. But if you just warmed them up with sugar, would that be a way to pull out more juice? Also would it make any sense to add cranberry juice or concentrate to top off the carboy?

I've not made any wine like this yet, but was just thinking about how we handled canberries.
 

RegionRat

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I saw the other thread too. I was wondering if a food grinder might be the best way crush cranberries. We had some holiday cooked cranberry salads we mad and we always used the food grinder to crush them. In those recipes we would also grind in an orange and half its rind for litle sweet to go with the sour cranberries. I wonder how that would work for wine.

the other part of this is you heat up the cranberries with white sugar, it pulls out a lot of juice. Our salad recipe boiled them and then added geletin. But if you just warmed them up with sugar, would that be a way to pull out more juice? Also would it make any sense to add cranberry juice or concentrate to top off the carboy?

I've not made any wine like this yet, but was just thinking about how we handled canberries.
The cranberry sauce we make (the recipe on the back of the bag) uses cranberries sugar and orange juice/peal. We heat it up to a boil and the use a potato masher to crush the fruit. It turns out nice. I didnt want to do that because I didnt know what boiling the fruit would do to the natural pectin.

I was considering using a food grinder but it is deer season and mine is out on loan. I used a 6mm chopping disk that did a good job of mincing up the fruit.

As for topping off with juice, I assume you mean after racking, I do know how to answer that question as I have not done it yet. I have thought of it though. I was thinking If the wine isnt stabilized wouldnt it just ferment out that little bit of added sugar in the juice.
 

Morgan

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From everything I've read heating any fruit will likely cause suspended pectin and a hazy wine that will be difficult or impossible to fully clear. Using enzymes should extract the juices, colors and desirable flavors just as well and without the haze.

That being said, I've read a couple recipes that call for dumping boiling water on the cranberries. Whether that's enough heat either to produce a heat extraction, or to cause pectin haze, I have no idea.
 

UBB

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That being said, I've read a couple recipes that call for dumping boiling water on the cranberries. Whether that's enough heat either to produce a heat extraction, or to cause pectin haze, I have no idea.
FWIW, I always freeze my fruit and when I thaw it I also use just enough boiling water to aid the process and have yet to have an issue of not being able to clear my wine.
 

Morgan

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Well, I'm sure glad I waited 24 hours to recheck specific gravity! After adding enzymes it went from 1.040 to 1.060 in 24 hours. The thought crossed my mind that the increase was due to more particulate in the must, so I strained through a coffee filter and the number remained the same. This resulted in needing to add significantly less sugar to achieve my desired SG of 1.085.

I'm pretty sure that the change is just due from more sugars being released from the berries into the water. I guess it took longer because the berries are more firm and starchy than other berries. I kind of wish I had started a batch with pectic enzyme to see how it compared to the Lallzyme EX with Opti Red.

So tonight I carefully rehydrated K1-V1116 with GoFerm at 105 degrees and fed it must at 3 15-minute intervals, then pitched and crossed my fingers!

pH is 2.95 so I won't be adding any acid at all.
 

derunner

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From everything I've read heating any fruit will likely cause suspended pectin and a hazy wine that will be difficult or impossible to fully clear. Using enzymes should extract the juices, colors and desirable flavors just as well and without the haze.

That being said, I've read a couple recipes that call for dumping boiling water on the cranberries. Whether that's enough heat either to produce a heat extraction, or to cause pectin haze, I have no idea.
I was not thinking of boiling, but just warming the crushed berries with added sugar. Both the heat and added sugars should draw juices out of the berries from my non-wine making experience.

Instead of adding water to the berries, would it work to add commercial cranberry juice that is already sweetened so less sweetening would be needed? Are there perservatives that would interferre with the fermentation, or do you just not want to add processed cranberry juice to a natural product?

Do you backsweeten this wine?
 

Morgan

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I think you'd be fine as long as the juice you're using doesn't have a lot of preservatives or sulfites. If I were doing it that way I'd probably use something from the natural food section, or like from whole foods or trader joes where I think they're more likely to be labeled so you know what's in it. Lots of people on this forum use concentrate, as an alternative.

I usually like a drier wine so I probably won't back sweeten most of mine although I may try it with a few bottles worth to see how it affects the bitterness.
 

RegionRat

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Well, I'm sure glad I waited 24 hours to recheck specific gravity! After adding enzymes it went from 1.040 to 1.060 in 24 hours. The thought crossed my mind that the increase was due to more particulate in the must, so I strained through a coffee filter and the number remained the same. This resulted in needing to add significantly less sugar to achieve my desired SG of 1.085.

I'm pretty sure that the change is just due from more sugars being released from the berries into the water. I guess it took longer because the berries are more firm and starchy than other berries. I kind of wish I had started a batch with pectic enzyme to see how it compared to the Lallzyme EX with Opti Red.

So tonight I carefully rehydrated K1-V1116 with GoFerm at 105 degrees and fed it must at 3 15-minute intervals, then pitched and crossed my fingers!

pH is 2.95 so I won't be adding any acid at all.
When I rehydrated the yeast I putin a little sugar and some nutrient. Then introduced a little of the wort, 1/2 cup or so, every hour for a few hrs. Then let it sit and work. I then pitched it.

As for the increase in sugar content that happened to me also. I am convinced it had to do with the sugar the fruit gave up.


JJ
 

Arne

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Little late now, but if I was working with those berries, would of had them in the freezer for a few days, thawed em out, put in strainer bags, dosed em with k-meta, waited 12 hrs, dosed em with pectic or the other one you are trying, waited til the next night checked s.g. adjusted sugar and pitched my yeast. Probably would of started the yeast when I put the berries in the strainer bag. If you use the Montrechet, make sure you keep plenty of nutrients in the must. If it gets strained, you will probably get the dreaded so2 smell. It has happened to most of us and there are cures, but not going there rite now. Keep your temps. up this time of year and stir the primary every day til it gets down to 1.010 or 1.020 or so. Then you can snap a lid and airlock on the primary and let it finish or rack to carboy to finish. Good luck with it, Arne.
 

Morgan

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My MoreWine red wine book recommended adding another dose of nutrient once I've seen a 1/3 reduction in SG, would you do this for a fruit wine?
 

Arne

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My MoreWine red wine book recommended adding another dose of nutrient once I've seen a 1/3 reduction in SG, would you do this for a fruit wine?

I do this quite often, in fact most of the time. Up front add maybe half of the nutrient and part way down add the rest. Think it helps keep some of the strain off the yeast and when doing it this way have not had the h2s problem. Arne.
 

Morgan

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Been punching down morning and evening since pitching the yeast. Everything seems to be going fine. I detected a slight egg smell the morning after pitching which dissipated quickly while stirring; haven't smelt it since. Last night I strained and filtered a sample to check SG... It was down to 1.065. I anticipate it will be low enough to add nutrient again tonight.

One thing which kind of surprised me was how goopy the must is... Almost like a cranberry sauce. It quickly clogged my strainer and even then left a lot of jelly in the coffee filter. I expect this will be very difficult to press and will leave lots of sediment to rack off.

Should I add more enzyme?

RegionRat - how's yours coming along?
 

Morgan

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I should add, the juice was a nice bright red and tasted extremely sweet but with a nice tart cranberry flavor.
 
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