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Old 08-27-2012, 05:14 PM   #1
ctgwaltney
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Default First batch of Welch's Grape wine

this is my first post. I have read several post and found this forum very informative and interesting. I am hoping some of you with more experience can answer a few of my questions. I have only made one batch of wine from a kit and it turned out great. I decided to do the
Welch's as I already had the juice on hand. I am making this 5 gallon batch of Welch's wine from bottles juice not concentrate. Here are my questions

Is it necessary to add Pectic Enzyme and campden tabs
I do not have Pectic enzyme on hand and recently read that if you are allergic to sulfur you shouldn't use campden tabs.

What I have is 4.25 gallons of Welch's grape juice and I added 3/4 of a gallon of well water to make an even 5 gallon batch. All I have added so far is sugar to bring sg to 1.098 and I have added 1 tsp of acid blend. I heard this can make it tart and I added less than called for in recipe as I don't like my wine to tart. I mixed the sugar and acid blend yesterday and was gonna add yeast and yeast nutrient today I am using Red star yeast Premier Cuvee yeast. I have been use to drinking wine that is around 18% that a friend makes and I like it like that. I realize that this wine should only come in around 14% but that is ok. I also wanted to know if it is possible to add more sugar after the sg drops to avoid the yeast from choking out. or is this yeast only gonna provide me at most with the 14%. I thought maybe staggering the sugar would let you possibly get an alcohol closer to the 18%. The temperature is 72 and I am using a fermenting bucket with lid and airlock. After adding yeast should I stir daily and also should I leave bucket not sealed and just covered to aid in oxygen for yeast to get a better start. Look forward to learning more about this hobby and meeting some new people on this forum that have the same interest in winemaking as myself. Thanks for any advice

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Old 08-27-2012, 05:36 PM   #2
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The campden tablets are used to keep bad bacteria and wild yeasts from ruining wines. Pitch the campden tablets crushed up 24 hours before pitching yeast. With bottled juice it is less likely you need it but not a bad habbit to get into.

Pectic enzyme is good for allowing the wine to clear and not by Hazey. still a good idea to use.

Have you added any yeast nutrients lik DAP? If not so you have access to get any?

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Old 08-27-2012, 05:38 PM   #3
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i have my 2nd batch sitting now, stir it good at first and let it sit longer than in the recipe states after you rack it, it helps tremendously dont rush it.

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Old 08-27-2012, 06:16 PM   #4
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I have not added yeast nutrients yet. I do not have access to pectic enzyme as the store is closed till after labor day. Im worried about campden tabs as they contain sulfur from what I hear and I may be allergic. I took a medicine years ago that had it and had a reaction and they werent sure if that cuased it or the pennicillin. I have since taken pennicillin with no problems. I may have outgrown the allergic reaction but still apprehensive about making a batch of wine I'm allergic to. should I add the yeast nutrients and yeast now it's been almost 24 hours or does the yeast nutrient need to sit longer before adding yeast

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Old 08-27-2012, 07:01 PM   #5
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Yeast nutrients can be added with the yeast. If you obsolutley can't get the pectic enzyme now then dont worry about it. Just start your must now and you can always use finning agents when fermentation is done. If you are not going to add sulfites then just pitch the yeast now. Commercial yeast will at least kill off natural yeasts "Usually" and the alcohol content will make it harder for bacteria to grow. you dont want this sitting in room temp till after Labor day to get the stuff ready.

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Old 08-28-2012, 12:55 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arpolis View Post
Yeast nutrients can be added with the yeast. If you obsolutley can't get the pectic enzyme now then dont worry about it. Just start your must now and you can always use finning agents when fermentation is done. If you are not going to add sulfites then just pitch the yeast now. Commercial yeast will at least kill off natural yeasts "Usually" and the alcohol content will make it harder for bacteria to grow. you dont want this sitting in room temp till after Labor day to get the stuff ready.
thanks for all the help. I went ahead and put 1 tsp of yeast nutrient and added the yeast and covered primary fermenter with cheese cloth so it can get plenty air. I figured with the welch's being pasturized I would be ok without the campden tabs. I hope I'm right. anyway to worried about the allergic reaction. so I will stir daily and add some more nutrient throughtout the first 5 days to must while stirring. hope this works. Not much money invested here but still want a good batch as we all do. gonna check in the morning to see how much activity is going on. Hopefully this will turn out ok. gonna continue to read on learn, but this can be more complicated than I thought without a kit and instructions. lol
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Old 08-29-2012, 12:04 AM   #7
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covered with cheese cloth and after 12 hours large amount of foam . Seems to be working great. Stirred today and recovered. Hope I am on the right track.I also have some grapes in freezer from last year to start next batch. you think after being frozen for 1 yr they will be ok. only stored in a food lion plastic bag.

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Old 08-29-2012, 01:43 AM   #8
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Best way to tell there is to thaw some out and eat some. If it tastes off then so will the wine. I vacume seel all my freezer goods and they seem fine a year into it but yours may be different.

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Old 09-01-2012, 01:11 AM   #9
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Best way to tell there is to thaw some out and eat some. If it tastes off then so will the wine. I vacume seel all my freezer goods and they seem fine a year into it but yours may be different.

Thanks good idea
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Old 09-01-2012, 01:14 AM   #10
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Fermenting slowing down on Welch's after 4 days of primary fermentation. gonna take a reading tomorrow and see what it looks like. may add a little more sugar and yeast nutrient. I like my homeade wine a little on the strong side and a little sweet. Anyway will prob rack within the next couple days and put airlock on.

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