new batch blackberry wine- very little body

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Oct 5, 2008
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Hello all,
I am making a couple 5 gallon batches of blackberry wine. Fermentation has
basically stopped now after about 3 weeks. Took a sip out of each batch and both taste fairly tart and seem to be alittle thin tasting.

starting SG was 1.100
current SG is 1.000.

used 22# of blackberries in one batch and 25# of blackberries in other.
added 11.25lbs of sugar to each.

My questions are:
Does this early indication of weak body, mean that is all I got, or does
body improve somewhat over age?

I would like to have a very slightly sweet wine as opposed to a dry wine.

Assuming body will not improve, can I add blackberry juice concentrate from homebrew store to increase body?

I really don't taste much alcohol at this point either, could I just add some juice concentrate and/or some more sugar to possibly restart a fermentation?
This would kick up alcohol, but would body improve with the juice?

Some of the oldtimers around said that they used to use 20 lbs of sugar to their must. Maybe i should have added more sugar to start.

Fermentation is only one part of wine making. Aging is another.

What was your original recipe? Right now your are at 13.58% ABV. How much alcohol are you looking for in this wine? If you want it sweeter you can stabilize and back sweeten. Your recipe will let the real experts here help you with your questions. Include your type of yeast please.
Recipe is as follows:
(5 gallons)
22# blackberries
3.5 gallons water - to make total volume 5 gal.
11.25 lbs sugar
5 campden tablets
2 tsp pectin enzyme
5 tsp yeast nutrient
2.5 tsp acid blend
one packet of Red Star Montsachet yeast
initial SG - 1.100

7 days fermentation SG - 1.000

currently in carboy now for 3 weeks, activity stopped.
haven't taken current SG. taste is tart, not much body and
really do not taste much alcohol.

I realize the ABV calculates to about 13+ % but just doesn't taste
like much alcohol at this time. I don't care about the alcohol % very much.

Batch #2
25# blackberries
11.25 # sugar
2 gal. water
same other ingredients

initial yeast was Red Star Premier Cuvee
but after 2 days no activity, so then I
pitched Lalvin 71B-1122
turned out that initial fermentation was working fine, but lid was not
on tight, so I only thought fermentation was not started.

Initial SG - 1.102

after one week in primary SG - 1.000

This batch slightly less tart tasting, still thin, but possibly slightly more body.

Am I just expecting too much after only 3 weeks?
I just want to make any corrections if needed, or possible.

Does body improve with age? or if it appears to be light bodied now,
that will not improve?

I'm sure the alcohol must be there, with the SG readings, I'm just
not tasting much at this point.

Hmmm...I guess it's gonna take a vet with more experience than I to offer anything useful.

I was thinking of acid blend, but I see you've already got that.

I can only see two things that seem questionable to me, and they both don't really have an impact here.

The first would be doubling the amount of sugar that you used. I'm thinking that with an OG of 1.100 already, by adding any more sugar, surely you would stall any fermentation, even if it ever got started.

The second would be the use of a tight, sealed, lid/airlock, instead of cheese cloth, to cover the primary.

But, you're FG of 1.000 indicates no problems with the fermentation.

Hopefully, age with fix everything.

Once fermentation is complete and sorbate and camden have been added you could add juice if desired which will likely add body to the wine. As for the tartness, the more you sweeten it the less tart it will be. After 12 months the taste will be all together better.
Pure blackberry can be thin.
Aging will alter / improve taste and some tartness but it will not give
the wine more body.
Remember this is a young wine so it might improve in due time, but body will not improve.

Adding some banana juice may improve body, but that might
start fermentation again. It is a good option but then you have to wait
again to make sure that fermentation does not start again.
The bananajuice will blend in with the blacbkerries and no bananaflavor
will be found in a couple of weeks.

Most blackberry I make i mingle with elderberry.
That gives tannin and body.

Making a heavy bodied wine and blending the two
might be an option.

Another option could be what I did in this blog-entry:
I added black currant syrup.

For next time add some bananas during fermentation or raisins.

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