Rhubarb Trouble Shoot

Discussion in 'Country Fruit Winemaking' started by Yeasty Boy, Sep 17, 2018.

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  1. Sep 17, 2018 #1

    Yeasty Boy

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    Working on 5 gallons of rhubarb wine. Started SG at 1.09 and I know i racked it too early from the bucket into a carboy at about 1.04 because I got over eager. It has been a month and it is stuck. I tried the de-gassing wand, yeast nutrient, and yeast energizer. All of which made bubbles for a while but then went flat. I added some Lalvin EC118 and am getting a bubble through the airlock every minute. The SG is now 1.03.
    I pitched the yeast first week of August 2018.
    Is is worth saving?
    Should i dump?
    Should I stop tinkering and just leave it alone for a while?
    I am pretty new and I thought the goal was to get it under SG 1.0 as fast as you can so it wont go bad on you.

    Thank you for your time.
     
  2. Sep 17, 2018 #2

    GreginND

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    Of course it's worth saving. Never dump it unless it tastes and smells bad. It won't go bad that quickly. Wine is very forgiving. I think you are on the right track. I have a lot of problems using yeasts other than EC1118 on rhubarb. The 1118 works every time. As long as it is under CO2 pressure, it will be fine in your carboy. Let it bubble away until it's done. You can smell/taste it every once in a while to make sure it is not developing off flavors. But I think it will be just fine,.
     
  3. Sep 17, 2018 #3

    Yeasty Boy

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    Thanks Gregin,

    I just needed someone to talk to. Nobody makes wine like this where I live so I do love the forum. I used Montrachet to start with and I won't use that again for Rhubarb.That and I think they changed the name of it anyhow.
     
  4. Sep 20, 2018 #4

    meadmaker1

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    I waited to see what more experienced folks might say. But perhaps the total acidity is having some affect on the yeast. Did you use straight juice or dilute with water.
     
  5. Sep 20, 2018 #5

    Yeasty Boy

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    Here is my method and recipe attached. Basically i had frozen bags of rhubarb in the freezer and most recipes called for about 16lbs. But my frozen bags were not even weights so i ended up with about 19lbs. I put them in the fruit bag and threw sugar on them to absorb the juice for 24 hours, and it really did make a cool syrup. After I added water and everything and did the 5 campden tablets it lost its color. Frank the Fermenter Supply guy recommended a handful of red berries and all i could find was a frozen pack of raspberries at the store. So I threw those in the fuitbag and it got a beautiful color.
    Thanks for your response.

    Adam
     

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  6. Sep 21, 2018 #6

    meadmaker1

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    Says added water. How much?
    Next time try thawing rhubarb in a large bowl or tub. You dont need to add sugar, the juice falls out of thawing rhubarb like nothing else scoop the rough out with a colander and press by hand then toss.

    Rhubarb accentuates the fruit its paired with. Dont be surprised if it tastes very raspberry. If it stays at current sg, a delicious sweet tart raspberry. Push it to the back burner and let it do what it wants. rack a couple times over 6 months (follow standard protocol) and see what happens
     
  7. Sep 21, 2018 #7

    Farmside

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    Meadmaker1, I’m also new to this hobby and your remark about rhubarb caught my eye. Wife and I harvested our rhubarb and made a simple syrup out of it, then blended it with apple cider. We both thought there was more Apple flavor, I brought the SG to 1.090 and started fermenting. My question is will there be even more so increase in flavor or about the same as the starting juice tasted?
     
  8. Sep 21, 2018 #8

    Yeasty Boy

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    I added water to about the 5 gallon mark... I hope it ends up being the sweet tart you describe... thanks!
    Rhubarb Cider!!! That sounds amazing.
    Attached is the carboy full of the rhubarb with a touch or raspberry. I love the color. The one next to it is gooseberry.
     

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  9. Sep 29, 2018 #9

    Scooter68

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    Farmside - With most fruit wines the fruit flavor seems to weaken - BUT on the plus side if you do a little bit of back-sweetening that flavor will usually come back.

    As to the SG of 1.003, other than the possiblity of fermentation re-starting, there's nothing wrong with stopping at that point. Many people end up back-sweetening their wines back to around 1.005 +/- so you would be right in the ball park. My best first time-around wine was a Black currant wine that stopped dead at 1.005. I went ahead and aged it from the (10 months) It turned out to be excellent. It was intended to be a dessert wine and it was great as that. The ABV was about 15% (I had aimed at about 17%) It was a success - So fermentation ending early is not ALWAYS bad if the ABV is within the range you intended and everything else is good. We all try to ferment dry but sometimes the wine gods have something else in mind for us. :db

    Hmmm re-read what you posted - You left off the last digit it looks like - so that SG last mentioned was 1.030 or 1.003?
    Big difference. At 1.030 keep it fermenting, at 1.003 I stand by the comments in this post.
    Normally best to list three digits to the right of the decimal in postings - for clarity.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2018
  10. Sep 30, 2018 #10

    JustJoe

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    I was told to use Lalvin 71B yeast since it reduces malic acid. It ferments slowly - minimum 4 to 5 weeks at 65 degrees. The resulting wine though is excellent. The malic acid content in rhubarb is quite high and reducing it mellows the wine greatly.
     
  11. Sep 30, 2018 #11

    meadmaker1

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    As @Scooter68 said the flavor of your wine will be more subtle. The acidity coupled with back sweetening aid in creating ballance. Dont confuse back sweetening with sweet. Acid and sugar are use in all forms of food creations.
     
  12. Oct 1, 2018 #12

    GreginND

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    I've had so many failed and stuck fermentations with 71b and rhubarb that I always stick to EC1118 now.
     
  13. Oct 2, 2018 #13

    Yeasty Boy

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    Thanks for the reassurance. It is at 1.03 and holding. Still little bubbles once and a while so I am going to just leave it in the corner and forget about it for a while. Hopefully bottle it in the summer.
     
  14. Oct 2, 2018 #14

    Scooter68

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    At 1.030 or 1.003?
     
  15. Oct 2, 2018 #15

    Yeasty Boy

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    1.030 Sorry I think that is the right number. I am still pretty green. Appreciate all the help you folks are giving me.
    It is right in the white area between the green 20 and the blue Beer area. Is that 1.030?
    Thanks
    upload_2018-10-2_10-33-25.png
     
  16. Oct 2, 2018 #16

    sour_grapes

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    Yup, you are right. In the white area would correspond to somewhere between 1.020 and 1.030.
     
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  17. Oct 2, 2018 #17

    Scooter68

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    Yes looks like 1.030 - Always good to list the full number in standard format. Not unusual for even experienced folks to make a typo - not misread the hydrometer but simply mis-type the number.
     
  18. Oct 6, 2018 #18

    Farmside

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    191B0114-1727-478C-BD6F-E856A8673537.jpeg 207E766C-08FA-49B9-AB27-DC8EAD27E767.jpeg OK, one more dumb question, OK 2 questions. Starting SG was 1.060 FG was .998 I racked my Apple/Rhubarb into clean 1 gallon carboy and topped it with reserved (non-fermented Apple/rhubarb I saved) bring it to 1.010. Should be 6.5% ABV correct? And it has sat for a few weeks now and there is this white stuff on the glass (inside), not settlement, looks like a dirty glass Best I can describe it. Any ideas what it is? Thinking about pouring through a filter into another carboy. Hope the picture uploads .... thanks
     
  19. Oct 6, 2018 #19

    sour_grapes

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    I have more questions than answers!

    -To answer the ABV question, we would have to know how much unfermented juice you added to figure out the dilution. It was at ~8% before you added the other juice.

    BUT.....

    -Did you add potassium sorbate before adding the unfermented juice? If not, it is likely that fermentation will start up again.

    (This might answer one of your other questions, about the dirty glass, but I am not sure about that.)
     
  20. Oct 6, 2018 #20

    Farmside

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    Potassium Sorbate and Potassium Metabisulphite were added, and approximately 22-25oz of unfermented juice.
     

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