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Starting 3 gallon of elderberry port

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pwrose

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Started with 9 lbs of elderberries and ended up with about 3 qts of juice so I did another 4 lbs and that gave me a full gallon of elderberry juice.
Added the juice along with 2 gallons of water then measured the SG and acid.
SG was 1.010
acid was .2%
So heres what was added
1 1/2 tsp yeast energizer
3 tsp yeast nutrient
1 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
6 tsp acid blend (checked acid and it was at .5%)

This is now sitting until I get home then I will check the SG again and the acid then add the sugar and yeast. The acid I will readjust when it goes into the secondary.

I used the wine calculator and plugged in the numbers to determine how much sugar I would need to get to 18%. Total sugar to be added should be 10 lbs. Since I am planning on step feeding this I will start with 5 lbs and wait til it ferments down to about 1.02 to 1.03 then add 2.5 lbs of sugar and let it go again until it gets down to 1.02 to 1.03 and add the last 2.5 lbs of sugar.

I am not 100% on which yeast I will use but I have an assortment, It will either be EC-1118 or Pasture Red, at least thats what I am thinking. However here is the list of yeast that I have on hand and what they can supposedly handle for alcohol tolorances.

Lalvin EC-1118 (18%)
Lalvin RC212 (14%)
Red Star Pasteur Red (16%)
Red Star Côte des Blancs (12-14%)
Red Star Premier Curvee (18%)

Drop some input
 

Goodfella

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I would use Red Star Pasteur Red. Then I would fortify a little bit...
 

pwrose

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I don't want to decide on fortifing just yet. I would like to see how it turns out without the outside alcohol.

Pasteur Red noted.
 

pwrose

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Took 5 lbs of sugar and 4 cups of the must and melted the sugar in it.
While the sugar was melting I put the Red Star Pasteur Red yeast in some warm water to rehydrate it.
After the sugar was melted and the yeast was rehydrated it was all added back to the must. Took a SG reading and got a 1.082 which was a little low for what I was shooting for but since I will be adding more later then it really doesn't matter.

Within 4 hours I had bubbles starting to form on the top. I gave it a quick stir and off to bed I go. I will stir again in the morning and start checking the SG Friday.
 

pwrose

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Tested the SG today, a day later than I was planning (Rascal Flatts concert that I don't remember much of). So I had a reading of 1.010, then I melted 2.5 lbs of sugar in a simple syrup and added it to the now fermenting wine. Took another SG reading and it was now at 1.040. I will give that a day or two to get going and test it again. Right now this is where everything stands
Starting SG 1.084
First addition of extra sugar brought the SG from 1.010 to 1.040
Total fermention of the first step was .074 for a total abv of 9.7%
with the addition of the 2.5 lbs of sugar should bring the total abv up to
(.074 + .046 = .120 x 131.4 = 15-16%)
The .046 would be if it ferments dry from 1.040 down to .994.

Ok so that was all the out loud thinking.
 

Wade E

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Personally I think that is a little low of fruit for a port wine. You usually almot dble the amount of fruit used when making a port to hide the higher abv. Everything else sounds good though.
 

pwrose

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I have another 6 lbs or so that I was going to condense down and use for a f-pak. Then I thought about the fact that elderberries leave that gummy green stuff I think from the stems that don't get cleaned out. So I am not sure what to do now I might use some blueberries or maybe get some blackberries to make a f-pak with.

Suggestions are welcome, elderberry, blueberry, or blackberry.

Is there anyway to get rid of the gummy green gunk in the elderberry juice?
 

Wade E

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I found in health food store a pure elderberry extract which worked out really nice on my last batch.
 

pwrose

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How much extract do you think I might need for a 3 gallon batch?

Checked the SG today and it was down to 1.030 already. Will check again tomorrow and add the last 2.5 lbs of sugar if it is down to at least 1.020.
 

Wade E

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IMO that is always determined by tasting it first but 1 bottle of thsi stuff would do fine, it was about a 4 oz. bottle.
 

Madriver Wines

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Any special instructions for getting rid of the toxins I am reading about? A friend has a load of bushes almost ready to pick.
 

pwrose

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The ripe berries just need to be cooked and all the toxins should evaporate. Make sure you get out as many stems and green berries as possible. I think I had a few stems left over because of the green glue like substance that is left around the top of the wine in the primary.
 

myakkagldwngr

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Was it just me or was that green gummy residue harder to clean off than any type of gorrilla glue man could possibly make?
I've been picking a few berries on and off, then putting them in the freezer until I'm ready.
 

Woodbee

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Yep the green gooies are tough. As many here have found out. The solution is oil. Rub down the mess with a vegetable oil till it releases and then wash it off with good hot water
 

BobF

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Suggestions are welcome, elderberry, blueberry, or blackberry.
My turn to think out loud ...

How long are you planning to age this?

More elderberries will add more tannin ... so will blackberries. Maybe think of something with less tannin to complement the elder.

Unless you're planning to age for A Long Time ... which is traditional with port ...

Red raspberry sure would be good with elder ...
 

pwrose

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The plan would be to age for at least 6+ months after bottling. That would be at least 4-6 months after it is in the secondary. So probably close to 1 year or ther abouts.

Update: Straight out of my log
Total SG readings so far
Start - 1.082
Before first sugar addition - 1.010
After first sugar addition - 1.040
Before second sugar addition - 1.016
After second sugar addition - 1.042
1.082 - 1.010 = .072
1.040 - 1.016 = .024
.072 + .024 = .096
.096 x 131.4 = 12.6 abv

Now it is waiting time to see if it will go dry or if it will stop early. I will move it to a carboy once it reaches 1.010 or less if I don't catch the 1.010.

I don't think I am going to add any other fruits to it, but I will however try to find some of the extract to add an f-pak to it.

How sweet is a port on the SG scale, I will google it but just in case I figured I would ask.
 

pwrose

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I didn't realize when I started this that I had added as much water as I did. I transfered this batch from the primary to the seconday and added an airlock. But i ended up with about an extra half gallon, so I put that in a 1 gallon jug and put it under an air lock. I figure I will use that to top off the main carboy after racking.

Checked the SG today to see where I was at and it was already down to 1.020 another drop of .022, for a total drop of .118 giving me an ABV so far of 15-16%. It is still going just nowhere near as fast as it was in the primary.

Hopefully the Pasteur Red yeast will make it all the way to dry with this. It only has .020 left to go.
 

pwrose

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Checked the SG again and it had dropped on down to 1.010. So far I have a total drop of .128 which should be somewhere around 16.8% ABV if I figured that right. It is already in a secondary with an airlock on it but the airlock is barely popping however there are plenty of little bubbles comming to the surface. I'll give it another 3-4 days and check the SG again, once it reaches the 1.000 mark or lower I will rack it and sorbate it.

I have around 5 lbs of elderberries that I am going to make into the f-pak. where should the SG reading be for a not overly sweet port?
 

BobF

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Checked the SG again and it had dropped on down to 1.010. So far I have a total drop of .128 which should be somewhere around 16.8% ABV if I figured that right. It is already in a secondary with an airlock on it but the airlock is barely popping however there are plenty of little bubbles comming to the surface. I'll give it another 3-4 days and check the SG again, once it reaches the 1.000 mark or lower I will rack it and sorbate it.

I have around 5 lbs of elderberries that I am going to make into the f-pak. where should the SG reading be for a not overly sweet port?
Your best bet is to go by taste. Stop when you think it's almost as sweet as you'd like.

Make sure you check adjust acid before you do any sweetening. Acid level has a big impact on sweetness perception.
 

pwrose

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Should the acid levels of a port be the same as that of a regular wine? 6-7%
 

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