Quantcast

oh eeek! pa reads 0.990 = zero alcohol

Wine Making Talk

Help Support Wine Making Talk:

capedread

Junior
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Messages
25
Reaction score
1
:eek: Hi everyone, am new to winemaking and last week started my first batch of Apple wine.

got me some free brambly apples from a friends garden, bought a book, checked out some sites and got on with it, forgetting to take the first pa reading in the excitement.

I strained and wracked it off tonight and it smelled like cider, not a bad thing, thought I and was very pleased with myself until I took the pa reading which is 0.990.

I've been franticly thumbing through the book and found that one can add sugar but usually before bottling nothing said about how to raise the pa levels or perhaps I've missed it (a possibility in my panic state)

Please can someone help me with this.. ps tasted quite dry when siphoning into demijohn..

ever grateful Dee
 

petes

Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2008
Messages
59
Reaction score
0
I'm finding it a little hard to actually decipher what you think your problem is.
Reading between the lines you should have gone about it the right way - the book would've guided you there?
Your 990 reading doesn't mean nil alcohol. If you got a ferment going it means it has now finished. Your omission to read the opening gravity makes it all a bit of a guess.
You could always throw some campden at it, dump some sugar in, gently stir and leave it covered for 12 hours minimum, then repitch some more yeast.
Flavour's going to suffer a bit though. And don't forget opening and final SGs.
 

capedread

Junior
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Messages
25
Reaction score
1
"The book"

The joy of home winemaking by Terry Garey has a list of pa readings and suggests that 990 is 0 alcohol or is that the first reading? ( thanks for your prompt reply by the way)

is not the first time I've bothched it up by the way, as I bought equipment for making 1 gallon wine's and the recipe called for 3kg appels, have you ever tried fitting 3kg of fruit into a 5L bucket? Just as well I have a sense of humor! it ended up in an almost new bucket with a piece of plastic and a rubber band! still..... laughing at myself a week later............

but thanks for your valued input and will do as you suggest
 

cpfan

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2006
Messages
4,867
Reaction score
193
How long ago did you start this wine?

sg .990 usually means that the ferment is finished. 0 pa is not 0 percent alcolhol, but rather potential alcohol, ie how much alcohol yeast can turn the existing sugars into. Actually, .990 is a negative pa.

Steve
 

petes

Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2008
Messages
59
Reaction score
0
990 is the finishing point of a ferment. (Pretty well anywhere between 1000 and lower to 990 could be regarded as done). Opening gravities will be higher, maybe up to 1100. It's the calculation between opening and closing that gives basis for alcohol volume; the KISS method is the difference between the two divided by 7.36 = ABV.
For an apple must that never had any additional sugar, opening could be in the range of 1050. Your closing of 990 then gives you a potential ABV of 8.15%. From your observations only you can tell whether or not a ferment actually took place.
 

capedread

Junior
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Messages
25
Reaction score
1
oh boy

you two are talking over my head
I started last monday, so Tuesday is when the yeast went in and tonight I wracked it into a demijohn
 

capedread

Junior
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Messages
25
Reaction score
1
ahh hang on

did add 1kg sugar plus all the additives involved, yeast nutrient, acidic acid, pectin and tannin in the form of 2 teabags in 1/2 cup hot water did follow the recipe just forgot to do the pa reading but the book says the 2nd pa reading should be between 3-4% = 1.030ish
 

cpfan

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2006
Messages
4,867
Reaction score
193
OK your wine has finished fermenting. All of the sugar has been converted to alcohol. That is why the hydrometer is showing 0% Potential Alcohol.

PS I don't care what the book says. Your yeast has done an excellent job and should be rewarded (pat them on the back, don't feed them), perhaps because of warm temps or something.

Steve
 

TheTooth

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 20, 2008
Messages
479
Reaction score
3
I'm not sure what you mean by PA reading... but I'm assuming you are using a hydrometer to get your gravity reading.

Did you take a gravity reading before adding your yeast? If so, what was it?

If you take your hydrometer and put it in a test jar filled with water, it will read about 1.000. Any sugars you add (apple juice, in this case) will raise that value as there is more solids in the water, making the liquid denser and the gravity reading higher.

After the yeast turns all the sugar into alcohol, the liquid will be less dense and the gravity reading will be lower. The alcohol is actually lighter than water, so your gravity can go even lower than water alone, hence the .990 you reached.

So what I'm ultimately saying is that, without a starting gravity, I have to assume that a gravity reading of .990 after a week means that you have created apple wine. Give it a taste. It'll likely be tart, dry, and a bit hot. So, let it age for 3 - 6 months and try again. You'll like how much more apple character it'll have, as well as how much smoother it is.
 

capedread

Junior
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Messages
25
Reaction score
1
dear cpfan

Steve you're kidding me! 1 week in a (non food grade) bucket with a sheet of plastic and a rubber band and I've cracked it? (please read my intro it tells all)
good grief, I can hardly believe it

yup it is a bit tart and very cloudy..........haven't added anything to it yet, thought I'd wait and see what you experts would have say to help me rescue it!
I'm still reeling in shock here. hope my next two (stared on Sunday) turn out just as well. at least I remembered to take the pa reading this time!
 

cpfan

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2006
Messages
4,867
Reaction score
193
In reasonable temperature, other good conditions (yeast nutrient, etc), and not too much sugar, the yeast does its job in 5-10 days.

I've just moved recently (well actually the end of Sept), and my wine making area is cooler than I would like. A kit I started 8 days ago has dropped from 1.084 to 1.010. Been meaning to pick up a heater for the area, especially as I started another kit today.

Steve
 

capedread

Junior
Joined
Nov 24, 2008
Messages
25
Reaction score
1
I'm sure you'll be settling into your new place fine and your wine's will be ok too.
I have an airing cupboard which is nice and warm where I Keep my fermenting wines (they seem to like it) but then again maybe England is not quite as cold as your new home?
good luck anyway and thanks for all the good advice, Dee
 

Latest posts

Top