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Old 06-08-2012, 03:15 AM   #1
cwebb
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Default Camden Tablet Question

I have a friend that makes wine. Here is what he does.
5 gal.
5 qts. of blackberries(fresh picked not washed to use natural yeast I think this is how his grandfather taught him)
12 lbs. sugar
water
He puts in primary and crushes and stirs for 7 days
Puts in carboy with airlock and lets it cook for 5 months or until done and then bottles. I think he may rack it once at about 3 months. He puts some Super-Kleen K.C. in the carboy about 2 days before bottling to make it crystal clear.

Now my question is should he be putting in some camden tablets before bottling if he plans to age in cellar for lets say a year? When should he be putting camden tablets in? How many? Will it affect the taste any? What type of camden tablet?

Thank you all in advance for any advice/help

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Old 06-08-2012, 03:57 AM   #2
Arpolis
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Camden tablets are used as an anti oxident befor botling and also helps when used in conjunction with potassium sorbate to keep further fermentation going. for instance if you wanted to add some sugar after fermentation so the wine was more sweet and less dry. He does not really need the camden tablets as long as the wine is properly stored. If he wanted to help with preventing oxidation and preserving the wine then use 1 camden tablet crushed per gallon.

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Old 06-10-2012, 03:28 PM   #3
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Campden tablets should always be used in conjunction with potassium sorbate to stabilize wine. These two things work together synergistically to zonk the yeast so it will not ferment anymore.

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Old 06-10-2012, 03:34 PM   #4
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I have a suggestion with regards to your recipe. If you use more blackberries you will get a more pronounced blackberry flavor. I typically use 4 pounds of fruit per gallon of wine.

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Old 06-11-2012, 01:19 AM   #5
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Thank you all for the sugesstions and advice

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Old 06-12-2012, 06:03 PM   #6
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I use 1 Campden tablet per gallon each time I rack. So for my last recipe I primary fermented and then transferred to demijohn after a few days. One month later I racked and added a Campden tablet, then one month after that I racked and added a Campden tablet. They I bottled after a month (adding no tablet). I'm a complete novice so I'm only posting this to see if this sounds okay. Does it?

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Old 06-12-2012, 07:57 PM   #7
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To much potassium metabisulfate "camden tablet" can cause some funky flavors. Use it up front 24 hours before pitching yeast to stop any wild yeasties and help sterilize the must. Then when bottling you can add that plus potassium sorbate to stop any further fermentation and keep from having bottle bombs. It is not necessary at each racking as long as you keep your equipment sanitary.

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Old 06-15-2012, 10:17 AM   #8
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Use Campden in the must? Really? That is interesting. My brewing shop said to use it *after fermentation* as I thought it stopped fermentation.

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Old 06-15-2012, 03:00 PM   #9
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Campden is not strong enough (unless you add copious amounts rending it undrinkable) to kill off commercial strains of yeast. It will kill most wild yeast and most bacteria that wine makers are apt to encounter if added to the must prior to pitching commercial yeast. It's also not strong enough that it would kill off an active wild yeast ferment. Campden is a chemical, potassium meta-bisulfite, that inhibits oxidization of the wine during racking and aging in bulk or bottle. At this point in the game the alcohol is providing the sterile environment and the sulfite is protecting the alcohol.

If you want to inhibit fermentation in a sweet wine as it ages then you would add potasium sorbate to neuter the yeast (won't reproduce) and potasium meta-bisulfite to prevent oxidation. Sorbate works better when used with sulfite.

Since your friend is trying to use wild yeast the campden (sulfite) would hinder fermentation if added to the must. So add it after fermentation is complete.

From looking at your posted recipe, 5 qts of blackberries is no way near enough to make 5 gallons of wine. It takes 3 to 4 pounds of blackberries and up to 6 for a heavier bodied wine per gallon, so he should be using 15 to 30 lbs of berries for 5 gallons. What he'll end up with is a light berry colored alcohol drink. Something is off there.

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Old 06-20-2012, 10:11 PM   #10
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Oh, ok, so the camden tablet 24 hrs before pitching won't harm the good wine yeast. Is it one camden tablet per gal?
Thanks, this will be my first batch of wine, I've been picking black berries like crazy!

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