Straight Juice Pear Wine

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Stressbaby

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For some reason this year we had a huge crop of pears. I had people bringing me bags of pears, my freezer was full. So I made two batches of pear wine. I'm posting my experience so far just to see if anyone has encountered similar issues.

Batch #1 used about 35# of pears, 2/3 Bartlett and 1/3 Seckel. They were frozen, thawed, cored, and pressed. I fermented straight juice, 2 gallons. The initial numbers looked awesome: 1.070, TA 6.8, pH 3.78. I touched it with a little acid to get the pH down a bit, chaptalized to 1.085, and pitched K1-V1116. SLOW ferment to 1.020 after 2 weeks. 2 weeks later I had H2S. It didn't resolve with Reduless but completely resolved with about 0.2ppm CuSO4 followed by Noblesse. It didn't go dry, stopped at about 1.007. Cleared with SuperKleer. But despite all of these manipulations, at this point the wine is pretty good. Almost more apple than pear character, and somewhat sweet. My thought was to ferment the second batch dry and maybe blend.

Batch #2 I didn't weigh, but pressed whole fruit and got 8 gallons. Mostly Bartlett, some Bosc. Initial numbers 1.060, TA 5.4, pH 3.75. I decided to push the acid higher and the sugar not so high on this batch: 44g of tartaric moved the pH to 3.25 (that's 1.47g/L so in theory my TA is just under 7 but I didn't remeasure). Chaptalized to 1.080. QA 23 was the yeast.

This is the slowest ferment ever. Seven days to 1.055, 13 days to 1.026. At that point an off odor showed up, and I dosed with 1/2 dose of Fermaid O and stirred it up. At 21 days it was 1.014 and odor free so I moved it to carboy. I pitched some EC-1118 and moved the carboys upstairs into a warm panty where it has continued to bubble very slowly and dropped a tiny bit to 1.012 in a week. At this point I'm still at 3% residual sugar. No off odors however.

So, 2 batches of straight juice pear, both very slow ferments, both H2S prone. Has anyone had similar experience? Any thoughts in general?
 

salcoco

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hydration of yeast with go-ferm would help and adding yeast nutrient either fermaid -k or fermaid-o at day one or two of fermentation would help. I notice you do not say if you have a clearing issues. I always had a problem until I added betonite at the start of fermentation which removed protein from juice. Other wise no issues. I always blended this with apple wine made a great blend.
 

Stressbaby

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hydration of yeast with go-ferm would help and adding yeast nutrient either fermaid -k or fermaid-o at day one or two of fermentation would help. I notice you do not say if you have a clearing issues. I always had a problem until I added betonite at the start of fermentation which removed protein from juice. Other wise no issues. I always blended this with apple wine made a great blend.
With both batches, the yeast was rehydrated with GoFerm and step fed with Fermaid K in the appropriate doses.

I used bentonite in the primary on the first batch - with the second batch, my notes don't show any bentonite so I could have missed that. But yes, the first batch still needed SuperKleer which worked fine.
 

Jal5

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I am interested in this since I have a lot of pears in my freezer also. Definitely a good year for them last summer!
 

John Pichnic

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Various growing/ripening conditions can create more sulfur containing amino acids in pears. Unripened pears would be my first guess. The H2S could have "rode" out with the CO2.
 
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