is my batch stalled?

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sweetcheeks

Nicely Dunne
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Hi,
We have started elderberry wine utilizing one of Jack Kellers recipes. 10# berries etc. It was placed in the fermentation bucket for two weeks. Somewhere at the end of the first week it appears to have stopped. SG went from 1.92 to 1.42, so it had some activity. So, taking the advice from the wine shop, I boiled the batch again and added more yeast with some yeast nutrient. Still no fermentation to speak of. Does anyone have any suggestions? Have I just wasted 10# of berries and ingredients? 10#s of elderberries is a lot of picking! Thanks.
 

Madriver Wines

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Look up yeast starter on here using the search feature. There are a couple threads for it. This should get your must going but time is short so get going asap.
Steve
 

Wade E

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You boiled the batch?????????????????? Ive never heard of this and dont understand the reasoning behind it at all! But anyway, Get your self a new yeast packet like Red Star Premier Cuvee or Pasteur Champagne and make a starter. Add some of your must to it a little bit at a time to acclimate the yeast to your wine which may have a bit too much abv for a yeast to be dropped into it which would shock the yeast and render it useless. Keep adding a little more of your wine to the starter until you have tripled its size or even a little more then add this to your wine along with some nutrient and or energizer. Did you use any energizer or nutrient in the previous recipe?
 

sweetcheeks

Nicely Dunne
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stalled elderberry wine

Hi and thanks to you both for your quick replies. I have spent the afternoon reading and learning from this website and one of the books I pulled off of here.

The thought behind the boiling was to kill all and start with a clean batch. Scratch that thought in the future. I'll do as you both suggest and let you know how things turn out. :h
 

sweetcheeks

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stalled elderberry wine

I forgot to answer your question about nutrient....yes. The recipe called for nutrient. Not sure what an energizer is unless it is another word for nutrient.
 

BettyJ

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Will boiling kill bad yeast / bacteria? Just curious....
 

St Allie

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Will boiling kill bad yeast / bacteria? Just curious....
I would say so Betty.. depending on how long you boil for, usually 10 mins to sterilise preserves... the other thing is.. wouldn't it boil off your alcohol too?

if it's been boiled at 1.042..I'm thinking there'd be no alcohol left in your wine.. you'd have to add sugar again with your new yeast.

let us know how you get on.

Allie
 

Sacalait

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Allie is right on, by boiling the must you've driven any alcohol present right out of there. Start over with the sugar and get the S.G. where you want it then pitch the yeast the same as if it's a new batch because in a sense that's what you've got. Some of the nutrient was consumed initially so I wouldn't know where to begin there but I'd think additional nutrient is required. I'm with Wade, never have I heard of boiling the must. This should be interesting.
 

Wade E

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Yeast energizer has more and different minerals in it designed to help a nutrient defficient must ferment better. Nutrients typically consist of Urea and phosphates only while Energizers also contain Magnesium, Yeast hulls, and Vitamin B-Complex. Its like taking a multi-vitamin cmpared to a single vitamin pill.
 

sweetcheeks

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We have activity! This time I placed it in my small loo with a small radiator which will keep the temp consistant. I added acid blend, yeast nutrient and sugar "to taste" in the four cups of must I pulled off the main before placing the yeast in the mix. So, thankfully, it seems to be working.

I am so glad I joined this forum! Thanks so much for all of your inputs and this discussion. I never thought about boiling off the alcohol which of course used all the sugar up! Da! Basic chemistry! I love this stuff.

I think I'll go back to the original recipe and add the prescribed amount of sugar to the bulk must. Then follow the guidance given yesterday to introduce in steps. We'll see. You are right, Sacalait, it should be interesting.
 

Luc

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Hi,
We have started elderberry wine utilizing one of Jack Kellers recipes. 10# berries etc. It was placed in the fermentation bucket for two weeks. Somewhere at the end of the first week it appears to have stopped. SG went from 1.92 to 1.42, so it had some activity. So, taking the advice from the wine shop, I boiled the batch again and added more yeast with some yeast nutrient.
First.
2 weeks pulp fermenting for elderberries is way too much.
You will have way to much tannin in the wine and it will have
to age a long time before becoming drinkable.

Next.
Did you measure SG again ?
By boiling the must, the alcohol will have evaporated and most likely
there is no alcohol left in the must anymore.

Last:
Boiling elderberries is in fact a wise thing to do as it drives of any sambunigrin (which is poisenous) however it is done upfront and not half way down the process.

At this moment I would press the berries and strain off the juice.
Next measure SG and acidity and adjust the must accordingly.
Then re-start fermentation.

Luc
 

sweetcheeks

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We have [email protected]! I took 1/3 of the must and followed above guidance w/ the addition of sugar etc. It was moving yesterday morning. This morning, I took the second 1/3 with more sugar and added it to the first brewing must. I now have foam. Yeah! I added 1/2 dissolved campden tab to the remaining 1/3 of the must to ensure no bugs will spoil the foaming brew when I add it tomorrow morning. Don't think I'll add any more nutrient and acid due to it being added to the first 1/3. So, it appears the fermentation has started again. I forgot to measure spg! But hey, if the 10#s of berries are saved, I can live with not knowing the alcohol content. More to follow as I progress.
Luc, the recipe did have me boil the berries with the sugar and part of the water. Then strain out the berries before starting the must. Not much I can do about the two weeks but learn for future. I'm new, so there is a lot of learning going on all the time.
 
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sweetcheeks

Nicely Dunne
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elderberry wine update

Still bubbling! I give it a whirl everyday and the CO2 is still popping out of the air lock. Things are looking very nice. :h
 

sweetcheeks

Nicely Dunne
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update on the stalled elderberry wine

You guys are awesome! I followed your advice on how to "unstall" our elderberry wine and have since bottled, labeled and shrunk wrapped the top of the bottles of elderberry wine. They look beautiful but more importantly, it tastes good. We'll see how it tastes when it ages a bit more.

Looking forward to putting the lessons learned in '09 to use in '10!
 

sweetcheeks

Nicely Dunne
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Luc, You are absolutely right about the tannins. Although the wine is beautifully clear and has a nice color and flavor, it does have an after taste. I attribute it to the what I believe to be the tannins. Do you have a good recipe and better instruction you would be willing to share?
 

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