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WilsonsWines

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So little history. I got started making wine because I had a customer of mine bring me in a couple bottles of wine. Very good, but one of the bottles had a "thicker" mouth feel. More alcohol taste. I like that but have not been able to duplicate it. I have followed recipes and all tasted good but to me, watery. I've read that a thicker wine just has more alcohol. So am I thinking correctly that I need to add more sugar prior to fermantation to make a thicker wine? The highest wine I made was just over 1.100 but still didn't come out the same. But I haven't let much of my wine age eather. I'd ask the man that gave me his but he has sense pasted. Maybe it's a age thing. Sorry for the ramble but thanks in advance.
 

richmke

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Everclear (90% alcohol) is just as thin as water. So, higher alcohol does not mean "thicker" mouth feel.

Sugar (unfermented) can make it thicker, but it also makes it sweeter.

I'm thinking you want a "big red". They definitely have more body (and higher alcohol).

Ports are also are thicker with higher alcohol.
 

WilsonsWines

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Thanks for the reply. I'm not at all a "wine" person so can you explain a "big red"
 

WilsonsWines

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Nevermind. A little Google goes a long way. Does anybody have a recipe for a big red wine? And I do like it sweet. Thx
 
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BernardSmith

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Hi WilsonsWines - and welcome. I don't pretend to be an expert and those on this forum who are far more knowledgeable than I may disagree but I don't think that viscosity has very much to do with the percentage of alcohol in a liquid. Sugar may, but the sugar that adds to the viscosity is sugar that has not fermented. I think the key element is that the longer it takes a wine to slide down your throat and as it does so the more it coats your tongue and the inside of your mouth the "thicker" the wine feels. Since alcohol itself is less dense than water then I would imagine that the greater the percentage of alcohol in a liquid - all other things being equal - the less viscous that wine will feel.
Now, unfermented sugars can add to the body of a wine but some yeasts are viewed as producing glycerols (BV7, for example) and the presence of glycerols will increase mouthfeel.
I recently made a mead (orange blossom honey) with juniper berries and some spices to sorta kinda mimic a gin. It's quite delicious in my opinion, is about 9% ABV and has the greatest mouthfeel of any mead I have made to date. I fermented the honey with an ale yeast - WLP 515 which fermented the must down to .098 before I added more juniper berries to the secondary. So, bottom line: I would argue that mouthfeel has little to do with alcohol per se and very much to do with the other substances in the wine that add a thicker body - unfermented sugars, glycerols, tannins, the "density" or richness of the flavor, etc.

Edit: Just saw Richmke's post above and looks like we agree. For the record, this mead I made is not sweet (gravity is below 1.000 ) yet it tastes sweet (to me)... Perhaps because of the effects the cinnamon, the nutmeg, corriander, the liquorice and all spice have... )
 
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WilsonsWines

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Hello Mr. Smith and thank you. When u put it that way, it does make sense. I think I just read that thicker wines are higher abv. I'm my mind "more sugar-higher alcohol". The two bottles the guy gave me we're blueberry and a cranberry. The blueberry was sweet with the alcohol taste and the cranberry was pretty dry. Now I know what he made a "basement brew" and proly fresh fruit where I'm using frozen berries and concentrates.
 

wineforfun

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Nevermind. A little Google goes a long way. Does anybody have a recipe for a big red wine? And I do like it sweet. Thx
So here is a recipe that yields a fairly high alcohol level, 13 - 14% and should have the mouthfeel you are looking for (although I agree with the others that the alcohol level is not creating the mouthfeel), and is definitely a sweet wine.
If you like Welchs grape juice, you will love this.
On page 4, post 35 is an outline of the recipe.
http://www.winemakingtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=36379&highlight=super+sugar+method&page=4

@jswordy created this and has been a go to for my wife since he gave it to me. Wayyyy to sweet for my liking but a lot of people I make it for love it.
 

WilsonsWines

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Thank you - added to recipe book.
I wonder if this would work with other concentrates as well or if it has to do with something with the grapes.
I'll have to look into that yeast. Never heard of it but in new.lol
I've used 1116, 1118 and a monchrat(spl?).

Need to wait for a bucket to open up. Lol
I've got a batch of beer goin, batch of dragons blood to add yeast to tonight and some Skeeter pee. And a couple carboy's with apple/cherry and strawberry/rubarb from concentrate in secondary.
All taste good but lacking that mouth feel I'm looking for.
Guess I need to add more sugar.

If you like Welchs grape juice, you will love this.
On page 4, post 35 is an outline of the recipe.
http://www.winemakingtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=36379&highlight=super+sugar+method&page=4
 

richmke

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I wonder if this would work with other concentrates as well or if it has to do with something with the grapes.
I have never made it, but I think it has to do with the quality of the concentrate, taste of the concord grape, and you also do NOT want any sorbate in it.

Welches is a high quality grape juice. Others may be a little "thinner", or less "grape" tasting, have artificial flavors (vs real grapes), etc.

As long as it does not have any Sorbate, feel free to give alternatives a try. Start with a gallon. If you don't like it, it didn't cost you much.
 
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WilsonsWines

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Welches is a high quality grape juice. Others may be a little "thinner", or less "grape" tasting, have artificial flavors (vs real grapes), etc.
Note taken. I'll have to give it a try. Most of my concentrates are Old Orchard. Can usually pick them up for a buck a can.

I've made some one gallon batches and man thats a chore! I guess if you let it. Lol maybe 8 different flavors to a time is a little much. But that was how it all got started.
 

pip

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Not sure sure how helpful this is but i make a lot of blackberry wine in summer because they grow wild not far from where i live so a can pick as many as i can be bothered to pick. Wines that i've made that have a higher percentage of fruit to water have more body for me. I'm no wine expert and actually i dont really like the full bodied wine but made one last year with 1 kg of berries per liter of water (2.2 pounds per 2 pints). Abv around 10%. Felt like a port in the mouth.
 

WilsonsWines

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So I mixed up a batch of Tripple Berry Blast!
Based of danger Dan's dragon blood recipe but used almost 9# frozen berrys and heavy on the sugar. I had to much must in my fermenter so I sucked a gallon out and put in a gallon jug. Add sugar to get to 1.510sg. The starting vessel is at 1.090sg. Added yeast to both. We'll see what happens.
 

Arne

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Take a little glass of one of the wines you have done. Get a can of old orchard or welches or whatever concentrate that matches your wine, let it thaw and add a spoonful or so to your wine. See if that is what you are wanting for more body. If so, you need to start with more fruit or add concentrate to back sweeten, or try an f-pac.
http://www.winemakingtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=44497
Arne.
 
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mainshipfred

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Hi WilsonsWines - and welcome. I don't pretend to be an expert and those on this forum who are far more knowledgeable than I may disagree but I don't think that viscosity has very much to do with the percentage of alcohol in a liquid. Sugar may, but the sugar that adds to the viscosity is sugar that has not fermented. I think the key element is that the longer it takes a wine to slide down your throat and as it does so the more it coats your tongue and the inside of your mouth the "thicker" the wine feels. Since alcohol itself is less dense than water then I would imagine that the greater the percentage of alcohol in a liquid - all other things being equal - the less viscous that wine will feel.
Now, unfermented sugars can add to the body of a wine but some yeasts are viewed as producing glycerols (BV7, for example) and the presence of glycerols will increase mouthfeel.
I recently made a mead (orange blossom honey) with juniper berries and some spices to sorta kinda mimic a gin. It's quite delicious in my opinion, is about 9% ABV and has the greatest mouthfeel of any mead I have made to date. I fermented the honey with an ale yeast - WLP 515 which fermented the must down to .098 before I added more juniper berries to the secondary. So, bottom line: I would argue that mouthfeel has little to do with alcohol per se and very much to do with the other substances in the wine that add a thicker body - unfermented sugars, glycerols, tannins, the "density" or richness of the flavor, etc.

Edit: Just saw Richmke's post above and looks like we agree. For the record, this mead I made is not sweet (gravity is below 1.000 ) yet it tastes sweet (to me)... Perhaps because of the effects the cinnamon, the nutmeg, corriander, the liquorice and all spice have... )
I'm just being lazy and could have researched this but I read a lot about banannas creating a mouthfeel. When would these be added or does it even work. I bought some glycerol but it appears it should be added just before bottling.
 

jswordy

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Use frozen concentrate (as opposed to juice jugs) and you eliminate or vastly restrict the factory added sorbate. Musts with factory sorbate can be allowed to sit in the towel-covered bucket 2-3 days and much of the sorbate will gas off. But it pays to try to keep it low from the start.

People here have successfully used all brands of frozen grape concentrate, but I stick with Welch's. The recipe will work with muscadine grapes and other varieties that do well in production of sweet wine.

It also works with fruits to make a nice dessert wine. Berry blends work well. Try it with almost any frozen fruit concentrate you see in your grocery.

Don't try it with dry wine grapes, the sugar will just remove or obliterate everything you are after from them and you will end up with a flabby drink.

Be sure your liquid temp (not air temp) is up there around 70-75 degrees to get the yeast started off well in the high sugar environment. I don't use a starter, but you might wish to, especially if liquid temps are low.

RC212 is an excellent yeast I use in many of my reds, and it dies at the right time in this recipe.

Like wineforfun said, it remains my most popular wine, as far as other people lapping it up. Label it "Elixir of the Eastern Grape" or "Concordia" and let them at it.

As far as viscosity (mouthfeel), residual or added sugar will improve mouthfeel of any wine. It adds a silkiness and thickness, and can hide a multitude of sins. That's why so many wines from lower quality grapes are sweet.

In dry wines, small amounts of glycerin are sometimes used to bump the mouthfeel slightly. Even in dry wines, producers sometimes add a very tiny amount of sugar, as well. At that level, it is undetectable and it has powerful smoothing effects for harsh wines.
 

BernardSmith

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I'm just being lazy and could have researched this but I read a lot about banannas creating a mouthfeel. When would these be added or does it even work. I bought some glycerol but it appears it should be added just before bottling.
When I make a gallon of mead I sometimes boil 3 or four blackened bananas sliced in their skins for a few minutes in the water that I will (once cooled) use to mix with the honey.
 

mainshipfred

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When I make a gallon of mead I sometimes boil 3 or four blackened bananas sliced in their skins for a few minutes in the water that I will (once cooled) use to mix with the honey.
So is this pre fermentation? Didn't realize it took so many. How many for 6 gallons of grape wine or is that a personal thing?
 

BernardSmith

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I generally don't make larger batches of mead than single gallons. Not a commercial mead maker and have no good reason to want to make 30 bottles of any one wine on a routine basis. I am sure that many folk do but I like the ability to make many different meads and have a large variety to choose from rather than have many bottles but no variety. Kind of view my wine making much like I view my cooking - wouldn't want to make 5 gallons of soup just because it takes the same amount of effort to make 5 gallons as 1 gallon. I simply make a batch almost every week... That allows me to experiment and to develop my protocols and techniques.
 
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