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Old 02-23-2013, 11:18 AM   #1
JustinCider
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Default Cranberry Wine

1- 96 oz. Bottle Cranberry
1- 96 oz. Bottle Cranberry Grape (4 separate fruit blends)
2 lbs of sugar (or SG to 1.110)
2 tsp of yeast nutrient
1 tsp of pectic enzyme
2 tsp of acid blend
2 tsp of tannin (powder form)
1/2 tsp. EC-1118


I started this on 12/2/12 it cleared quickly...like a week into secondary and has been crazy good for a long time. Bottled it up last weekend and back sweetened with a 1/2 container of concentrate. (although i don't think it really needed it) The wife took a bottle to work and shared some at the end of the day and they have been fighting over it ever since! Only one bottle left out of the 5 i got. I will be starting at least 2 more gallons in the next week or so just due to demand. I would it sooner but I'm making strawberry mead this weekend. Unfortunately i forgot to document the OG! Here it is all bottled up.

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Old 02-23-2013, 11:45 AM   #2
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I have made this a little sweet to get a high FG. then reserve a bottle to add to Grape concentrate wine that i finish dry. resulting in Champagne. use heavy bottles and keep an eye on. Tart carbonated ice cold fun

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Old 02-23-2013, 05:14 PM   #3
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So I have a three gal batch done but has low ABV and too sweet. Won't restart so want to fortify a bit with Vodka and add water to cut sweetness.
Body is excellent and don't want to water it down. Any ideas.

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Old 02-23-2013, 09:39 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by easyT View Post
So I have a three gal batch done but has low ABV and too sweet. Won't restart so want to fortify a bit with Vodka and add water to cut sweetness.
Body is excellent and don't want to water it down. Any ideas.
FYI..there is a sep thread started on this question by easyT.. http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f25/too-...o-mild-392433/
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Old 10-14-2013, 12:41 PM   #5
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Lots of cranberry wine threads here, but I will add my $0.02 to this one.

My first experiment was with 64 oz Apple&Eve Naturally Cranberry and 64 oz of Apple&Eve Cran/Pomegranate. As the original post says, these are already juice blends.

0.5 lb Brown sugar
0.25 lb Clover Honey
1/2 tsp DAP
1/2 tsp Pectic enzyme
1/2 packet rehydrated Montrachet.

OG: 1.076

Tempted to let it sit for 2 months like Apfelwein, but couldn't resist cracking it open at about 2.5 weeks. FG: 1.002, ~9.7% ABV.

Bottled about half still in 2 wine bottles and a couple of flip top beer bottles. Added some disssolved dextrose to 3 more bottles to try carbing it.

I really like it and so do some of my taste testers! Initial taste is tart to sour...and I almost gave up..but it grows on you. Not very good body. Should have added some tannin or maltodextrin. I like the lightly carbonated stuff a bit better (seems sweeter), but I consider it a success!!

Over the weekend I made a double batch:

2 x 64 oz Northland Cranberry
1 x 64 oz Northland Cran/Pomegranate
1 x 64 oz Northland Cran/Blackberry

1.5 lb Light Brown Sugar
3/4 tsp DAP
1 tsp pectic enzyme
Remainder of Montrachet packet (rehydrated).
FORGOT the TANNIN/MALTODEXTRIN.

After 12 hours, no activity. Afraid I left the open pack of Montrachet too long, even though it was sealed and refrigerated. If nothing happens by tonight I will pitch a packet of RC-212 or EC-1118 since I have both around.

I guess there is still time for the tannin/maltodextrin. Since it is a wine, I guess the grape tannin would be a better choice. Opinions???

Planning to again bottle about 50/50 still and carbed, but this time I will carb in a bottling bucket rather than measuring portions out to each bottle.
OG = 1.076

24-Oct-2013

Edit: Fermentation started in 24 h and was very vigorous for about a week. Has calmed down now and I just letting it sit. Hoping to be ready by Thanksgiving. Might secondary over some cranberries...but we'll see.

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Old 10-14-2013, 01:39 PM   #6
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Scored 255 pounds of fresh cranberries! At 15# per five galeon batch of wine its a good thing I love my cranberry wine! I have drunk most of the wine I made with the 50# I got last year. Maybe this year I will have some left to age:-)

I have only used fresh cranberries for wine, not juice. The one time I used a premade juice the wine was flat. It needed tannin and acid blend. If your juice wine was just started toss in a few handfulls of fresh fruit. It will help with body and complexity. A glug or two of honey will help if you would rather not add fruit. If no grape tannin, you can use plain tea as a tannin source.

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Old 10-14-2013, 01:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jensmith View Post
Scored 255 pounds of fresh cranberries! At 15# per five galeon batch of wine its a good thing I love my cranberry wine! I have drunk most of the wine I made with the 50# I got last year. Maybe this year I will have some left to age:-)

I have only used fresh cranberries for wine, not juice. The one time I used a premade juice the wine was flat. It needed tannin and acid blend. If your juice wine was just started toss in a few handfulls of fresh fruit. It will help with body and complexity. A glug or two of honey will help if you would rather not add fruit. If no grape tannin, you can use plain tea as a tannin source.
Good info, thanks!! I have several bags of frozen cranberries that I was going to throw in, but was afraid it would get too tart and difficult to clear. I used Honey in the first batch, but left it out of the second. I do have some grape tannin powder and will drop some in. Maybe secondary it over some of the thawed out cranberries. Any hints for how to use the whole berries? They should be pretty mushy when thawed, but should I try to crush them more? Add any additional sugars?

Thanks!!
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Old 10-14-2013, 02:38 PM   #8
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Even frozen and thawed cranberries are still firm. Nothing is as tough as a cranberry skin. They must be peirced or cut. Crushing sometimes works. Heating them in hot water untill they pop works. For just a pound I would slice them in half and toss them in. If your must has already started to ferment then you may be better off softening them in hot water untill they pop. Cool and add, in a mesh bag for easy removal. Unless you use lots of water, little to no extra suger will be needed. You can adjust the sg of the cooked cranberries befor adding to the must. No added suger needed with just the berries. Don't forget to add pectin enzyme. It may not be needed, but it does not hurt and really aids clearing.

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Old 10-14-2013, 06:29 PM   #9
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Cranberry juice naturally contains quite a bit of benzoic acid, which is a cousin of the preservative Sodium Benzoate.
The preservative effects are stronger at low pH and less at higher pH. I make sure to adjust the pH to at least approx pH 3.6 ... particularly as I use 71B-1122 for yeast (rather than something more bullet-proof) . Anything pH 3.0 or under and you risk stalling. As a slight additional protection from a pH drop during ferment, the potassium in the potassium bicarb I adjust with provides some extra buffering protection.

I also make sure to primary ferment in an open top bucket and use both DAP and an energizer during the first 1/3 rd of the primary ferment.

I make cranberry wine from straight cranberries rather than store-bought cranberry juice.
Cranberries also have a fair amount of pectin in them so I always treat the must with pectinase before pitching the yeast.

Cranberries have a good amount of natural tannin (this is why cran juice is drank for UTI btw) ... and particularly because you macerate/ferment on the skins (with the crushed cranberries in the must) ... no additional tannin is needed or desired ... and particularly because of the way store-bought grape tannin molecularly changes to being more astringent as the wine is aged.

I freeze and thaw them, bring them to room temp and crush/cuisinart them, add water to the crushed berries (about 4 gallons water to 20 lbs cranberries), add pectic enzyme and let sit overnight. Then, adjust the pH & chaptalize to about 1.080.
To pitch: I rehydrate the yeast properly ... and then make a starter of about 8oz grape juice and a tablespoon of sugar and the rehydrated yeast ... shake ... and then over a few hours add 3 or so 5oz doses of the cranberry slurry into to the starter jar, shaking after each and keeping in a warm place. Then I pitch-in the starter and we’re off to the races.

I stabilize, fine and backsweeten. The wine has very strong cranberry flavor and brilliant color.
It is extremely important to age cranberry wine ... the flavor change from aging is extraordinary. I bottle in about 6 months and then try to not drink it for another full year.

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