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bobrules

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I love this forum but I see many varying methods of wine making. Below are the instructions from the place that I buy my juice. Let me know what you think.

WINEMAKING INSTRUCTIONS
Very important: Please make sure that all equipment is CLEAN & STERILIZED.
**** 76 degrees (F) is recommended for highest quality fermentation. ****
These instructions are a GENERAL guide for making wine from our juice. The timing of the stages listed below
influence the outcome of the fermentation. The most accurate way to determine when to move to the next stage is
to take a Specific Gravity (S.G.) reading with a hydrometer. Waiting until proper readings have been reached will
ensure proper fermentation.
Equipment Needed: Primary fermenter- food grade plastic bucket with lid and vent, stirring spoon, hydrometer,
siphon tubing kit, packet of yeast, 6-gallon carboy or damigiane, airlock and bung.
STAGE ONE- Primary Fermentation
Day 1 Mixing: Carefully remove the bucket lid by removing safety seal and pry off the lid. Stir the contents
gently. Prepare the yeast according to the package directions and gently stir into the juice. Measure and record
Specific Gravity to establish a fermentation starting point. ** Place primary fermenter with lid lightly on and
in an area that is between 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit.**
Day 2–10: Stir gently twice daily for 5 minutes. Continue to monitor the yeast activity (bubbling, foaming, etc)
that is most active in this stage. Check and record the Specific Gravity (S.G.) readings. Readings decrease as
sugar converts into alcohol.
STAGE TWO: Secondary Fermentation
Day 11–20: Check S.G.: if below 1.020 transfer mixture (rack) to secondary carboy and fit airlock. Although
yeast activity will slow, the fermentation process will continue in this phase.
Day 20 – 30: check S.G. if 0.990-0.996 it will be dry, if 1.000 it will be a medium wine, if 1.002 – 1.006 it will
be a sweet wine. Allow fermenting longer if needed for desired dryness. You should taste the wine at this stage
to find the dryness or sweetness that you desire. When the wine is ready, proceed to stabilization. Remember
temperature controls the rate of fermentation, cool temperature may extend days required for fermenting your
juice or stop the process prematurely leading to problem wine.
STAGE THREE: Stabilizing
Transfer wine (racking) to the STERILIZED plastic bucket. Add potassium sorbate and potassium
metabisulphite, according to measurements indicated on the packaging, into the wine and stir (Note: further
fermentation will not occur after this step). Stir three times for ten minutes each, allow to rest several minutes
between stirrings to de-gas the wine before final stabilizing and clearing. STERILIZE carboy and refill with
stabilized wine to the top (it is essential to fill the carboy to the top with no room for air), fit airlock and place in a
cool area. Airlock should fit securely (airtight)
STAGE FOUR: Aging / Bottling
Store the wine in a dry, cool place for 35 to 45 days to allow further stabilization. You should notice the wine
clearing and sediment collecting on the bottom of the carboy. Repeat the racking process several times every 30-
45 days to achieve maximum clarity if desired. At this point, you may also consider clarifying agents (Sparkaloid
or Bentonite) if the wine is still cloudy, or aging materials like oak chips to add astringent oak flavor. When wine
is clear, it is ready for bottling. Make sure bottles and closures are clean and sterilized. Filtering your wine is an
option, although recommended.
 

hounddawg

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the only missing part in the instructions is the part where you should send us all a bottle each to try ::
Dawg




QUOTE=bobrules;623920]I love this forum but I see many varying methods of wine making. Below are the instructions from the place that I buy my juice. Let me know what you think.

WINEMAKING INSTRUCTIONS
Very important: Please make sure that all equipment is CLEAN & STERILIZED.
**** 76 degrees (F) is recommended for highest quality fermentation. ****
These instructions are a GENERAL guide for making wine from our juice. The timing of the stages listed below
influence the outcome of the fermentation. The most accurate way to determine when to move to the next stage is
to take a Specific Gravity (S.G.) reading with a hydrometer. Waiting until proper readings have been reached will
ensure proper fermentation.
Equipment Needed: Primary fermenter- food grade plastic bucket with lid and vent, stirring spoon, hydrometer,
siphon tubing kit, packet of yeast, 6-gallon carboy or damigiane, airlock and bung.
STAGE ONE- Primary Fermentation
Day 1 Mixing: Carefully remove the bucket lid by removing safety seal and pry off the lid. Stir the contents
gently. Prepare the yeast according to the package directions and gently stir into the juice. Measure and record
Specific Gravity to establish a fermentation starting point. ** Place primary fermenter with lid lightly on and
in an area that is between 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit.**
Day 2–10: Stir gently twice daily for 5 minutes. Continue to monitor the yeast activity (bubbling, foaming, etc)
that is most active in this stage. Check and record the Specific Gravity (S.G.) readings. Readings decrease as
sugar converts into alcohol.
STAGE TWO: Secondary Fermentation
Day 11–20: Check S.G.: if below 1.020 transfer mixture (rack) to secondary carboy and fit airlock. Although
yeast activity will slow, the fermentation process will continue in this phase.
Day 20 – 30: check S.G. if 0.990-0.996 it will be dry, if 1.000 it will be a medium wine, if 1.002 – 1.006 it will
be a sweet wine. Allow fermenting longer if needed for desired dryness. You should taste the wine at this stage
to find the dryness or sweetness that you desire. When the wine is ready, proceed to stabilization. Remember
temperature controls the rate of fermentation, cool temperature may extend days required for fermenting your
juice or stop the process prematurely leading to problem wine.
STAGE THREE: Stabilizing
Transfer wine (racking) to the STERILIZED plastic bucket. Add potassium sorbate and potassium
metabisulphite, according to measurements indicated on the packaging, into the wine and stir (Note: further
fermentation will not occur after this step). Stir three times for ten minutes each, allow to rest several minutes
between stirrings to de-gas the wine before final stabilizing and clearing. STERILIZE carboy and refill with
stabilized wine to the top (it is essential to fill the carboy to the top with no room for air), fit airlock and place in a
cool area. Airlock should fit securely (airtight)
STAGE FOUR: Aging / Bottling
Store the wine in a dry, cool place for 35 to 45 days to allow further stabilization. You should notice the wine
clearing and sediment collecting on the bottom of the carboy. Repeat the racking process several times every 30-
45 days to achieve maximum clarity if desired. At this point, you may also consider clarifying agents (Sparkaloid
or Bentonite) if the wine is still cloudy, or aging materials like oak chips to add astringent oak flavor. When wine
is clear, it is ready for bottling. Make sure bottles and closures are clean and sterilized. Filtering your wine is an
option, although recommended.[/QUOTE]
 

cintipam

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My first reaction is that they call it sterilized instead of sanitized. Huge diff in process and time needed.

Second reation is that most buckets are too small to handle the must while in active ferment. At the least sit it inside a plastic tub or something to catch the overflow.

I really really do not like the implication that you should plan to stop the fermentation when the wine has reached the sweetness that you like. I see bottle bombs in the future.

Pam in cinti
 

hounddawg

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very N.E. Arkansas in the instep of MO, BOOTHILL,,
if you plan to keep making wine I'd check out vacuumpumpman (steve) i think his web site is www.allinonewinepump.com
by using a vacuum pump to transfer, filter, rack an even bottle, every time you put your wine under vacuum it removes your gasses co2.
makes degassing, racking an bottling a world easier, an steve stands behind his product, and a good site for wine base concentrates is www.homewinery.com, way better then the wine bases you get in a number 10 can, in my opinion.
Dawg
 

bobrules

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if you plan to keep making wine I'd check out vacuumpumpman (steve) i think his web site is www.allinonewinepump.com
by using a vacuum pump to transfer, filter, rack an even bottle, every time you put your wine under vacuum it removes your gasses co2.
makes degassing, racking an bottling a world easier, an steve stands behind his product, and a good site for wine base concentrates is www.homewinery.com, way better then the wine bases you get in a number 10 can, in my opinion.
Dawg
Thanks I will check him out.
 
Last edited:

BernardSmith

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These look like instructions that come with kits. The focus is on the clock rather than on the activity of the yeast. By all means, use the length of time as a guide but fermentation is not an engineering activity. It is a living process and with all the variables involved, from the sugar concentration, to the number of healthy yeast cells in the must, the variety of yeast, to the temperature of the room, the starting acidity of the must, the amount and quality of the nutrients available for the yeast, the types of sugars that you are asking the yeast to ferment etc etc etc, I would tend to use my hydrometer as a more reliable gauge as to when and what action I take. That said, it looks like the time frame you tend to use is about 60 days (2 months).. You may see enormous changes and improvements after 6, 9, 12 months of bulk aging. Mechanical degassing after 1 month may make sense but the wine will tend to degas itself over months - especially if you rack off the sediment and lees every couple of months rather than immediately bottle the wine as soon as the last molecule of sugar has been converted into CO2 and alcohol. Patience improves the quality of the finished wine to say nothing of improving its clarity - The longer you allow it to age the less particles will drop out of suspension and cloud your wine.
Last point: an operating room and the surgeon's hands may need sterilization but home wineries need only to sanitize anything that touches the wine. In other words, we can happily live with some spores and some bacteria. The yeast itself will create an environment that optimally suits the variety you are using and disprefers other competitors for the same sugars. Sterilization, suggests to me a rather more anxiety-filled approach to cleanliness. You want equipment to be clean clean but it doesn't have to be microbe free.
 
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Scooter68

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Agree with the comments about NOT stopping fermentation. Let the fermentation process complete. Most wines finish with the SG between .990 and .996. Even when you've reached .996 it won't hurt to wait 3-4 days to see if it will drop further. (.990 is normally the lowest you will see.) If you want the wine to be a bit sweeter after fermentation is complete you can back sweeten.

REMEMBER - Wine kit makers recognize that most new wine makers are in a hurry and want that wine ready to drink in a month to two months. If that is your goal - you might consider going to the store for wine. Good wine takes time and patience.

Secondly, if you are going to really get into wine making you need to make sure you have the right equipment. Primary fermentation in a plastic bucket is OK - Normal. But when the wine reaches an SG between 1.020 and 1.010 it's time to move it into a glass carboy where you can get a good seal to keep out air, bacteria and bugs. Plastic bucket lid seals are not only unreliable for general wine making use, they are a pain to put on and take off.

As you said there are a lot of opinions and variations on wine making but the general rules apply.
1) It takes time for a good wine to mature
2) Allowing air, bacteria and bug to get into you wine is very undesirable,
3) Sanitize your equipment before use even in you did so after the last use.
4) Monitor your wine as it ferments and ages. (That means tasting in very small amounts are encouraged - 5 ml or less is not going to ruin your wine) Also unless this is a joint project don't share your tasting with a friend or family member - Often they don't understand how the wine will change over time and they become less than supportive of your new hobby.
5) Have fun - Wine making is not meant to be a tedious hobby that has you on edge all the time. And really go ahead and buy a bottle of the same wine you are making - compare your results with the commercial wines. It also helps you be more patient especially after you have a couple of glasses. :dg
6) Post questions on here and keep us informed. There are many years of experience available to be shared on this forum to help you have fun and be successful.
 

heatherd

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@bobrules When I do juice pails, I do fermentation in the primary fermenter because it is bigger than the batch. I just lay the lid on top.

I wait until around 1.010 or less and rack to a carboy. Then I ferment under airlock until dry, which is around 0.990. I add kmeta.

If you want to sweeten the wine, then add sorbate and backsweeten. I never try to stop fermentation while in process.

Then I bulk age six months, adding kmeta at the three-month point, and check for clarity and gas before I bottle.
 

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