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May 16, 2024
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Hi I just found this a few seconds ago. I was trying to find the best yeast for my taste. I like sweet wine with higher alcohol content. Stuff I have made in made in the past either was not sweet enough or low on alcohol. I use strawberries a lot and I want to try using a better yeast. It's all personal use and I can't pay a lot to experiment with. Any suggestions are appreciated
Welcome to WMT! Sweet and high alcohol is going to be a fortified wine. Fortified just means that something is added back into the wine after fermentation. All ports are fortified, for example. Do you like ports?
Welcome. First, if you want a sweet wine the typical process is to allow the wine to ferment dry then stabilize and back sweeten to your taste. You can search the site for “back sweetening”. You can pick a yeast with a high alcohol tolerance and get in the 16% ABV range… perhaps a little higher with step feeding. Anything higher and you should look at fortifying the wine with spirits. A good, reliable high ABV yeast would be Lalvin EC1118.
Welcome to WMT!

The yeast and method to follow depend on what you mean by "higher alcohol content". Typical ABV for a fruit wine is 11-12% ABV. In that context 14% is considered strong. To achieve that ABV, most wine yeast will work. Start with an appropriate brix level / specific gravity, let the yeast do its thing, then stabilize and backsweeten.

If you want above 14%, that narrows the field, and EC-1118 is probably the best choice.

If you're looking for 18% ABV, it's possible to step feed EC-1118, although sometimes the yeast dies short of that level. If you want higher than 18%, then fortifying the wine is required.

I suggest you start a thread in the beginners or country wine forums, describing what you want to achieve. You'll get better attention in those forums.
Welcome to WMT

Every yeast has a rating for how much alcohol it will tolerate. 1118 at 18% is about as good as it gets. If high is 14% most wine yeast will do this. A technique to get maximum for the yeast strain combined with sweet is called “step feeding “. This is essentially start a normal fermentation monitoring the gravity, > when the gravity drops to 1.030 or 1.020 add more sugar. ,, eventually the yeast can’t tolerate the alcohol combined with high osmotic pressure from sugar. At this point it is done.