Quantcast

Preservative free concentrates?

Wine Making Talk

Help Support Wine Making Talk:

HankRearden

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
37
Reaction score
5
I'm just starting out so thought I'd take a few practice runs with store-bought (Welch's) concentrate. - my first batch is brewing.

My purpose in doing this is to get away from additives altogether - sulfites or anything else for that mater.
I anticipate getting past Welch's eventually and wanting to brew a cab or merlot.
That may happen this winter so I suppose I'll be limited to concentrates at that time?

If so, can someone point me to a preservative free concentrate?
All the concentrates I'm finding online contain sulfites.

Thanks in advance
 

wineforfun

Still Trying To Make The Perfect Wine and Now Tryi
Joined
Nov 5, 2012
Messages
2,707
Reaction score
896
Look at doing a kit. They come with the concentrate and all additives separately, so if you decide you don't want any sulfites, sorbate, etc. then you just don't add them.
 

DoctorCAD

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2012
Messages
1,797
Reaction score
525
You do realize that your wine wont age well without sulfites and that sulfites are a naturally occurring by product of fermenting.

Heck, the most dangerous chemical that is in your wine is alcohol. It is responsible for countless deaths every day. Sulfites...not so much.
 

heatherd

Supporting Members
WMT Supporter
Joined
Jan 8, 2014
Messages
1,919
Reaction score
1,137
Location
Maryland
I'm just starting out so thought I'd take a few practice runs with store-bought (Welch's) concentrate. - my first batch is brewing.

My purpose in doing this is to get away from additives altogether - sulfites or anything else for that mater.
I anticipate getting past Welch's eventually and wanting to brew a cab or merlot.
That may happen this winter so I suppose I'll be limited to concentrates at that time?

If so, can someone point me to a preservative free concentrate?
All the concentrates I'm finding online contain sulfites.

Thanks in advance
Hank,

I think you can do without most things, but sulfite is one that is hard to avoid. It is an antioxidant and a stabilizer.

Additionally, you'll need potassium sorbate if you plan to sweeten your wine after fermentation is complete.

You can let time clear your wine, avoiding chemical clearing agents.

Heather
 

HankRearden

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
37
Reaction score
5
Hank,

I think you can do without most things, but sulfite is one that is hard to avoid. It is an antioxidant and a stabilizer.

Additionally, you'll need potassium sorbate if you plan to sweeten your wine after fermentation is complete.

You can let time clear your wine, avoiding chemical clearing agents.

Heather
Well, I will try to pasteurize and then maybe refrigerate and see how that goes.
And I know it won't be "fine" wine and as far as retaining the best possible characteristics of of the grape, sulfites would be better, but I do react badly to them.
So though I might end up with a "wine drink" ;) I think it might be worth a shot at first to try to eliminate all sulfites, then if it's totally horrible, try to minimize sulfites.
I can drink commercial wines - some of them, but some give me a bad reaction.
 

heatherd

Supporting Members
WMT Supporter
Joined
Jan 8, 2014
Messages
1,919
Reaction score
1,137
Location
Maryland
@HankReardon You might find that homemade wine impacts you less, because there's less sulfite than in commercial wine.
 

Arne

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 15, 2010
Messages
4,928
Reaction score
972
Location
central Nebraska
Hank,
Time for me to jump in. Welcome to the forum. This is one of the great things about making your own wines, you can make them however you like. Good luck with them, Arne.
 

Scooter68

Fruit "Wine" Maker
Joined
Aug 29, 2015
Messages
3,354
Reaction score
1,840
Location
Northwest Arkansas
By concentrates are you speaking of grocery store fruit concentrates or Wine Making Suppliers concentrates? Store bought concentrates are not that easy to find without preservatives. Concentrates from Wine Making Suppliers are normally NOT going to have preservatives added.

If you need to avoid sulfities perhaps the best thing to do is be a little extra careful about your sanitization of all equipment and tools. AND of course don't plan on making large quantities unless you are HEAVY consumer.
 

wineforfun

Still Trying To Make The Perfect Wine and Now Tryi
Joined
Nov 5, 2012
Messages
2,707
Reaction score
896
By concentrates are you speaking of grocery store fruit concentrates or Wine Making Suppliers concentrates? Store bought concentrates are not that easy to find without preservatives. Concentrates from Wine Making Suppliers are normally NOT going to have preservatives added.
I think he is talking about grapes now. He mentions he is ready to get past Welchs and move onto a Cab or Merlot.
 

orto

Member
Joined
Aug 31, 2016
Messages
69
Reaction score
8
Are you certain it the sulphides that are bothering you, because is far more likely that it's biogenic amines.
 

HankRearden

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
37
Reaction score
5
Are you certain it the sulphides that are bothering you, because is far more likely that it's biogenic amines.
I'm open to learning more about this.
I do, however notice a close correlation to the sulfite smell/taste. If it is really strong, I get face flushing and sinus congestion. A bit of digestive upset too.
 

HankRearden

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
37
Reaction score
5
I think he is talking about grapes now. He mentions he is ready to get past Welchs and move onto a Cab or Merlot.
Well not quite yet :( More on that in a minute.

Any type of concentrate or juice. Seems like a lot of the kits have sulfites added to the concentrate. I just contacted RJ Spagnols and they verified this.
Ironically - Welch's purple does not have any concentrate. White does.

Speaking of which - this is going horribly bad.
This is my first batch with Welch's and had a bad rotten egg smell to start out with. I did stir with a copper rod and that helped a bit.
But now I'm only about 14 days in and I'm already at a SG of .994 from 1.1055.
This thing is rolling fast and still going - which I don't understand because it should be out of sugar.
It tastes dry and BAD. I mean there is some funky taste to it that I can't even put into words. Not vinegar. Almost a plastic taste.
Could it be H2S? Will that dissipate when I degass?

Any help is appreciated.
Thanks in advance.
 

wineforfun

Still Trying To Make The Perfect Wine and Now Tryi
Joined
Nov 5, 2012
Messages
2,707
Reaction score
896
Any type of concentrate or juice. Seems like a lot of the kits have sulfites added to the concentrate. I just contacted RJ Spagnols and they verified this.


Speaking of which - this is going horribly bad.
This is my first batch with Welch's and had a bad rotten egg smell to start out with. I did stir with a copper rod and that helped a bit.
But now I'm only about 14 days in and I'm already at a SG of .994 from 1.1055.
This thing is rolling fast and still going - which I don't understand because it should be out of sugar.
It tastes dry and BAD. I mean there is some funky taste to it that I can't even put into words. Not vinegar. Almost a plastic taste.
Could it be H2S? Will that dissipate when I degass?
Interesting. If it has sulfites in the concentrate in the kit, I am assuming it is just to keep the juice fresh as sulfites are included in the kit for you to add after fermentation.

As far as the Welch's issue. Something must have been wrong with your setup from the get go as there should be no off smell when starting out.
Was everything sanitized properly? Was this smell before yeast was added?

I have made NUMEROUS batches of Welchs and all have turned out just fine.
Also, what type of yeast did you use? 14 days is more than enough time to reach .994.
 

HankRearden

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
37
Reaction score
5
Interesting. If it has sulfites in the concentrate in the kit, I am assuming it is just to keep the juice fresh as sulfites are included in the kit for you to add after fermentation.

As far as the Welch's issue. Something must have been wrong with your setup from the get go as there should be no off smell when starting out.
Was everything sanitized properly? Was this smell before yeast was added?

I have made NUMEROUS batches of Welchs and all have turned out just fine.
Also, what type of yeast did you use? 14 days is more than enough time to reach .994.
Yes. In the concentrate to keep it fresh until use.

I did use a whole pack of Montrachet on 2 gallons of juice, so I'm thinking that may have caused too much activity and too much H2S and that is what I'm tasting.

Have you bottled at .994 or did you wait longer? When did you consume?
Not sure what to do with this batch :(
 

wineforfun

Still Trying To Make The Perfect Wine and Now Tryi
Joined
Nov 5, 2012
Messages
2,707
Reaction score
896
I did use a whole pack of Montrachet on 2 gallons of juice, so I'm thinking that may have caused too much activity and too much H2S and that is what I'm tasting.

Have you bottled at .994 or did you wait longer? When did you consume?
Not sure what to do with this batch :(
Well, part of your problem may be that yeast. Montrachet is known for sulfur issues. It needs plenty of nutrients and to be kind of "babied" along. I quit using it for those reasons. I had had a couple batches early on in my winemaking go south on me with that yeast.

No, I never bottle below 1.000, unless I am working with a dry red, ie: merlot, zinfandel, etc. With Welchs, you will need to backsweeten to somewhere between 1.005 - 1.020, to pull the flavor out, depending on the sweetness level you like. I would guess somewhere between 1.010 - 1.015 would be best.
 

heatherd

Supporting Members
WMT Supporter
Joined
Jan 8, 2014
Messages
1,919
Reaction score
1,137
Location
Maryland
@HankReardon If you have H2S issues, try racking a few times to see if that helps. If not, you can buy Reduless to treat it.
 

HankRearden

Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
37
Reaction score
5
Well, part of your problem may be that yeast. Montrachet is known for sulfur issues. It needs plenty of nutrients and to be kind of "babied" along. I quit using it for those reasons. I had had a couple batches early on in my winemaking go south on me with that yeast.

No, I never bottle below 1.000, unless I am working with a dry red, ie: merlot, zinfandel, etc. With Welchs, you will need to backsweeten to somewhere between 1.005 - 1.020, to pull the flavor out, depending on the sweetness level you like. I would guess somewhere between 1.010 - 1.015 would be best.
Thanks.

So wife and I racked it again and said "now or never", threw in a cup of sugar and degassed it for 15 minutes. By this time we were just being flippant and fully expecting to have to pour it down the drain.
Still a strong H2S smell but we decided to pasteurize and bottle it for giggles.

I have to say... even with the H2S - (which is still prevalent), it isn't bad!
And after comparing it to a so-so local winery product that we had on the shelf, decided that it wasn't really "worse", just different. The negatives of the H2S weren't worse than the sourness of the winery product, though it did give me a bit of heartburn.

The Koolaid-ish flavor of Concord was a bit unusual, but not terrible.
We corked 8 bottles.
INCREDIBLY STRONG, but smooth. The taste of alcohol is barely perceptible but noticeable after one glass. Clearly my calculation of 13.5 ABV was way off.

Thanks for all the help everyone!

Just happy that it wasn't a total failure. Might cave on the sulfite issue and try a kit next time.

Can someone recommend a yeast that's less prone to H2S production than the Montrachet I was using?
 

Stressbaby

Just a Member
Joined
Aug 19, 2012
Messages
2,078
Reaction score
830
Just about any other yeast you can find will have less H2S than Montrachet. K1-V1116 or EC-1118 are good. I've also done well with QA23.

How old is this wine you just bottled?
 

Latest posts

Top