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ruggierm1

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Ok. Thanks to all of the good advice I have received in this forum, I decided to try a Strawberry Wine (1 Gallon Recipe). I decided to try Jack Kellars from the June/July 2009 edition of Winemaker Magazine.

I modified it a tad based on some of the other recipes I have read. Here they are:

-Jack's recipe call for 2 lbs of sugar, I used 2.5
-His calls for 2 tsp of citric acid, I used acid blend (I don't know if there is a difference, any help explaining would be appreciated).
-I added 1/2 tsp of peptic enzyme

Do I leave the bag of strawberries in the primary until the first stage of fermentation is done?

Starting SG is 1.10

Any tips on how to make this a successful batch will be appreciated.

Thanks
 

Luc

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I have made several strawberry wines and they always come out good wether sweet or dry. However strawberry has a delicate flavor which in my opinion will not be favored by the high alcohol (14%) you are aiming at. I prefer mine at around 11%. Besides that I prefer blush wines light and fruity. And this will be a blush wine.

The difference in the acids is a matter of taste. Citric acid is a fresh fruity acid. Malic is much more sharper and tartaric is mostly encountered in grape wines. In this case the blend will not do any harm but I would prefer citric only in a fresh blush-wine like strawberry will be.

Put the strawberries in a bag. Mash them by hand and let them in the bag during primary fermentation but at the most for about 4 days. Then transfer to secondary.

Be aware that there will be a lot of pulp from the strawberries leaking out of the bag. This pulp will be fluffy, so difficult to rack from. So preferably make some more wine in a separate bottle to top up with or use sanitised marbles in the secondary to keep air-space at the minimum.

Luc
 

ruggierm1

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Luc,

I wasn't really aiming at 14% alchohol. I added too much sugar to get the starting SG where I thought it should be. Any thoughts how to correct that? Should I stop fermentation earlier? Say something above 1.00?
 

Wade E

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Unless you have the means of sterile filtering or have the room to put it in your fridge for a few weeks stopping is not an option. adding sulfite and sorbate will only stop a wine from refermenting, it will not stop it from fermenting unless you od the wine with this stuff ruining the wine.
 

Luc

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As it will throw a lot of sediment like I mentioned before, why not make the batch a bit larger without adding more sugar. That should bring the SG down.
Make it larger by adding some more strawberries and water.

Luc
 

ruggierm1

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As it will throw a lot of sediment like I mentioned before, why not make the batch a bit larger without adding more sugar. That should bring the SG down.
Make it larger by adding some more strawberries and water.

Luc
Thanks for the advice Luc. When I originally posted this, I hadn't added the yeast yet, so I went and took another reading just to make sure that it was really at 1.100. It still was so before I added the yeast, I added some water, not alot, but that brought the SG down to 1.085. I didn't add more strawberries because I already have added more than the recipe called for anyway, so I just left that part alone.

I'll keep you updated on the progress.
 

ruggierm1

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Just a progress update:

About 5 days after starting the wine, removed strawberry pulp. SG was 1.040

6 days after starting, SG was 1.020. Transferred to Secondary.

According to the recipe, when it hits dry, rack again.

One question, does this get degassed? If so, it is in a 1 gallon bottle, should I transfer into a 5 or 6 gallon carboy, degass in there, and then transfer back to a clean gallon bottle?
 

Wade E

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Once its done fermenting you wll want to add sulfites and sorbate and then degasin a bigger vessel, you dont need it to be that big but t wouldnt hurt. The wine wont clear till its been degassed.
 

ruggierm1

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Once its done fermenting you wll want to add sulfites and sorbate and then degasin a bigger vessel, you dont need it to be that big but t wouldnt hurt. The wine wont clear till its been degassed.
Thanks Wade. Appreciate the help.

:r
 

Madriver Wines

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Once its done fermenting you wll want to add sulfites and sorbate and then degasin a bigger vessel, you dont need it to be that big but t wouldnt hurt. The wine wont clear till its been degassed.
I degass in the primary ,either the 7.9 or the 2 gal. Wade I worry about the air getting to it while I stir. Is this a concern? I stir for 10-15 min and then bottle.
 

ruggierm1

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Ok. Here is the timeline:

7/13 started fermentation. SG = 1.085
7/16 removed fruit. SG = 1.040
7/18 SG = 1.020, transferred to Secondary
7/23 SG=.997 added 1 campden tablet, potassium sorbate(1/4 teaspoon), and degassed. Transferred to gallon jug.

It seems to be still having some fermentation going on.
Any thoughts?
:d
 

Ceegar

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Ok. Here is the timeline:

7/13 started fermentation. SG = 1.085
7/16 removed fruit. SG = 1.040
7/18 SG = 1.020, transferred to Secondary
7/23 SG=.997 added 1 campden tablet, potassium sorbate(1/4 teaspoon), and degassed. Transferred to gallon jug.

It seems to be still having some fermentation going on.
Any thoughts?
:d
Hydrometers aren't all that accurate when you get close to dryness. Hydrometers can say dry but you will always have .1%-.2% RS anyway at the very least. Was it still fermenting when you added the campden and sorbate, or was it finished then started back up?

You obviously still have some fermentable sugar in there the yeast is feeding on by the sounds of it. I would use fermenting activity as the guide that it's finished, not what it says on the hydrometer.

I say let it go and it should finish up soon. I'm thinking you could stick in the coldest part of your fridge with the airlock on it and it will eventually stabilize in a couple of days.

My 3 gal batch has been going for 3 weeks now just creeping along - it's just below 1.010 and taking its sweet time.
 
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Wade E

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I would never add sorbate or sulfites when it is still fermenting. check a few days in a row to make sure the sg is the same and only then do you add sorbate and sulfite. Its no big deal since it was that low but a yeast that is still working and you add that stuff can make the yeast struggle and may start to give an off flavor.
 

ruggierm1

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I would never add sorbate or sulfites when it is still fermenting. check a few days in a row to make sure the sg is the same and only then do you add sorbate and sulfite. Its no big deal since it was that low but a yeast that is still working and you add that stuff can make the yeast struggle and may start to give an off flavor.
What I mistook for further furmentation, I now realize is CO2 creeping up the side of the bottle and causing the airlock to bubble every now and then. I degassed the heck out of it with my drill mounted attachment in a 5 gallon carboy, but I guess it wasn't nearly enough. I'll have to transfer it back to the 5 gallon and degass again.
 

Wade E

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Degassing can be a pain sometimes especially when the temps are cooler then 75* as cooler temps make the wine hold in C02.
 

Tom

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Wade,
Congrats on 2,000 msg in only 15 months.
 

Ceegar

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What I mistook for further furmentation, I now realize is CO2 creeping up the side of the bottle and causing the airlock to bubble every now and then. I degassed the heck out of it with my drill mounted attachment in a 5 gallon carboy, but I guess it wasn't nearly enough. I'll have to transfer it back to the 5 gallon and degass again.
I don't know, it sounds like it's still fermenting if the airlock is still bubbling.
 

Tom

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If you k-meta and sorbated @ .997 check the gravity now and see if it changed.
 

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