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lethargy

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so 2 1/2 weeks ago i threw together 2 brews- raspberry banana wine, and cinnamon tangerine mead. this is the first time i've ever used yeast nutrient (diammonium phosphate). i then left town for xmas. i got back 2 weeks later to find that both brews had 100% stopped fermenting.

at first i thought something must be wrong. i decided to rack both brews then figure out what was going on. i tasted each one as i was racking it, and both still had a littlebit of co2 in them, and where dry (like 1.5 on a scale of 5). i then proceeded to drink a bunch of each one on separate nights, and got hammered both nights. i then took a hydrometer reading on the mead and calculated the % to be 21% (seems a bit high to me though). (i didnt calculate the % of the rasp banana because i didnt take an initial reading from it (too many banana chunks floating in the must to see the reading)).

it seam as though both of my brews have finished fermenting in just 2 weeks. my first brew that i did (without nutrient) took 1.5months to finish fermenting. im so far ahead of schedule that i now have no idea how to proceed from here.

should i throw in some campdens to kill off any yeasts that may still be living then clarify the brews and bottle, or should i left them sit for a while? if so, how long?

- as a side not, i used too much cinnamon in the mead, it has a very strong taste. the recepy i read said 1 stick per gallon, so i used 4 sticks. in future i think im gonna go with 1 stick per 2 gallons. i also cant taste the tangerine at all, which isnt surprising as i didnt put that many in (3 tangerines per gallon) as i didnt want to drop the acidity too low which i read is a big problem while brewing with citrus fruits. i hope with time the cinnamon mellows and the tangerine becomes noticeable. anyone ever brew with citrus fruits? if so, how much is too much.

also, if anyone wants to try something new that tastes good, i highly recommend raspberry banana- even green as it is, it tastes spectacular. the banana is more pronounced right now then the rasp, but again with time im hoping they'll balance out. this is the recipy for anyone whos interested:

8lb banana
8lb rasp
10lb sugar
lalvin 1118
water untill a total volume of 4gal

i feel like its missing something though, needs a hint of spice i think, but im not sure what. maybe cinnamon, but i dunno about that. any suggestions?
 

sour_grapes

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Can you tell us your starting SG (at least for the mead) and what they both are at now?
 

salcoco

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one thing you can do is doe some sweetening with bench trials.it will cut down on alcohol as well as enhance fruit taste. need to add sorbate if you do sweeten. for the mead use honey for the other use sugar syrup
 

BernardSmith

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I believe that there is about 18 g of sugar in a lb of raspberries (USDA data) so in 8 lbs that is about 144 g or about .3 lb; bananas have - if fully ripe - about 54 g /lb of sugar (same source) so 8 lbs would be around 432 g or about .95 lbs of sugar - so the fruit added about 1.25 lbs of sugar and so the total volume of sugar is let's say 11.25 lbs.

I don't know how much water you added but if we assume - as you suggest the total volume of the must is 4 gallons, then we have 11.25 lbs of sugar dissolved /mixed to make 4 gallons of must = 2.81 lbs of sugar per gallon, and by calculation the SG of that solution should be about 1.112 ( = 2.81 *.040, where .040 is the gravity that 1 lb of sugar will add to the gravity of water (1.000) if the total volume of sugar + water is 1 gallon) - so the potential ABV is approximately (1.112 * 131 =) 14.6% ABV
 
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BernardSmith

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Wow, Bernard, You are good!
Nah.. I am an academic. I like data. The data is out there. Always good to use it. And the thing is when you use the data you can better see where you are going with any fermentation and if you know where you are going you can make better wines and meads.
 

wildhair

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I just had a batch of pink grape wine go from 1.100 to 1.010 in 3 days. I added Fermaid K along with regular nutrient. What was last SG reading?

Here's a list of "wine duo's" - complementary flavors, spices, etc. I found it helpful when looking for a little something extra to add.
 

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BernardSmith

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Who is the author of this list and how do we read it? There is no complementary flavor against say, pomegranate. Does that mean that there is nothing that complements pomegranate?
 

wildhair

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The author is Jack Keller and the screenshot was taken from his blog. He mentioned it in a post about flavor combo's on this forum a few years back. I should have given credit to him, I reckon. This is the link to the original - scroll down almost to the bottom - there's an article on Complimentary Wine Ingredients.
http://winemaking.jackkeller.net/wineblognew.asp

Looking at it - it appears that whatever format it was originally typed in didn't translate well when it was shifted to the web. The columns appear to be out of alignment and the lines don't match up. It was confusing to read, I agree. Without re-typing the entire list , I went line by line and re-jiggered it. I think it might be a little more helpful now. maybe............. ;-)
 

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