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Other Vintner's Harvest slow fermentation w/EC-1118

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Hoxviii

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All right, so since Vintner's advertises their 1 gallon concentrate as a "just add water", i figure this is the best section for it.


Short version: EC-1118 has only dropped my Sg .01 (1.09 to 1.08) in a week despite a vigorous fermentation, and now it isn't pushing anything through the airlock. Fermentation was steady at 67 degrees, and I splashed the fermenter once a day for the first 4 days.

Let it keep going? Or?

Long version:
About a week ago I picked up a gallon of raspberry concentrate in a white plastic gallon jug.

Mixed it with water per the label, and added sugar to get the mix up to a 12% potential vs. the 9% potential that the blend/water mix indicated. I rehydrated a packet of EC-1118 and pitched it after 15 minutes or so (it had built up a solid head of foam, no doubt the yeast was alive and happy). Immediately put it under an airlock, per label recommendation.

The yeast took off about 24 hours later, and what appeared to be a good fermentation followed. I splashed the bottle once a day for 4 days. Last night it was down to about a bubble a minute, so i checked to see if it was ready to go to secondary.

Turns out, the Sg is still up around 1.08 despite the fermentation having been vigorous enough that i had to check on it the first 3 days to make sure the airlock never ran dry from bubbling over.

From what I gather, EC-1118 is the yeast you use when this happens to another yeast :(

So let it keep going? Repitch yeast? Rack and see if it takes back off? I'm all ears.
 

heatherd

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@Hoxvii I would let it keep going. Airlock bubbles are not an indication of fermentation. It is likely still chugging along.

That said, if you test the SG and it is the same for three days, it's either done or stuck. It's done if it goes to around 0.995 or 0.996. It's stuck if it is much higher than that. If stuck, I would repitch.

Best of luck!
 

DoctorCAD

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You must not have stirred well enough at first. Your starting gravity was probably higher than the 1.090 you measured. In a week, it should have dropped more than 10 points.
 

sour_grapes

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I am going to take a lucky guess.... What are you using to measure the SG? You aren't, by chance, using a refractometer, are you? (Those do not give straightforward results during a fermentation.)
 

Hoxviii

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nope, everything is hydrometer based and the hydrometer has produced good and consistent results for the last 30 years (me & my dad before).

I'm not kidding when I say the Sg only dropped .01 in 5 days, despite having to top the airlock off during the first 3 days.

My next door neighbor is big time into brewing wine and beer, and his comment was "you rehydrated around 15 minutes. How long did you actually rehydrate?" - which I couldn't answer to a better degree of confidence.

At this point the plan is to leave it under airlock another day and check for presence of bubbles/drop in Sg. If no drop, i'm going to re-add yeast, but without rehydrating to avoid starving the yeast right after waking them up. (as of today, there's no Sg drop from yesterday).
 

sour_grapes

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Then I am going with @DoctorCAD 's suggestion. Do you know how much concentrate, how much water, and how much sugar you actually added?
 

sg1strgt

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Hoxviii, Do you remember what the size of the Vintner container was exactly? I just finished a batch of their Cherry concentrate (128oz) to make 5 gallons. I cut the water down to 4 gallons because I wanted a stronger flavor and had a similar "stuck" issue. My ph turned out to be a bit low and had to adjust it, made sure my temp was 72 degrees and used EC-1118. I went from 1.09 to I think .995 in under 6 days
 

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