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Old 01-09-2014, 08:07 PM   #1
SmokeyMcBong
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Default lemonade/skeeter pee?

So, with my first batch of HB doing its thing in the spare bedroom I decided that I'd give the hard lemonade a go.

I went to my HBS and got another fermenter bucket and airlock. I mentioned to the clerk that I was gonna make the lemonade said I would need some yeast. He got me a pack of US-05 and said that this should be the one. But from my reading now it seems most are using champagne yeast even though some have claimed good results from others, should I be ok with the yeast I have?

Also, through research, I've found that some people have problems getting the yeast to take because of the acidity. And have read of some who only add a little lemon to the water and sugar to begin fermentation then either add more lemon bit by bit over the period or add all the lemon after fermentation is complete. Any down side to either of these scenarios?

And lastly, I much prefer real lemons to concentrate or frozen. Can I just boost my liquids gravity to 1.060 or 1.070 (don't really want it to knock me on my ass too hard), add lemon to taste and then ferment?

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Old 01-09-2014, 10:57 PM   #2
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Your yeast should be fine. It is true a lot of us like the wine yeasts. My preference for lemon wine is Lalvin 71b-1112. But most any brewing yeast should be ok if the must is cared for properly.

You can follow the skeeter pee instructions and proportions from the web site:

http://www.skeeterpee.com

If you follow that then you will be fine. You could not use any lemon up front and start the yeast going in the sugar water/nutrients/tannin and add the lemon later. It is up to you. If you want the results everyone raves about in the skeeter pee thread then follow the site above. But if you are like me then feel free to experiment as you like.

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Old 01-09-2014, 11:36 PM   #3
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cool, thanks bro.

I've read the skeeter pee site before and lots of great reviews online. I'll probably make a slightly bastardized version of it. Truth be told, I was hoping for something carbonated. Would I be correct in thinking that I could leave out the kmeta and the sorbate, ferment it as dry as it will go, back sweeten with splenda and bottle carb with corn sugar?

thanks again for the help.

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Old 01-10-2014, 01:14 AM   #4
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My first batch of skeeter or I did exactly that... It never fermented further?!? But mine sat in secondary over 6-8 months and with the high acid I just don't think the yeast was strong enough to pick back up. US-05 is a pretty aggressive yeast so it may be better. Not sure though. Next batch I try to carbonate I am just going to use sugar to back sweeten like normal and when it starts to carbonate I will pasteurize with heat once the bottles are where I want them.

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Old 01-10-2014, 02:15 PM   #5
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Use Red Star Premier Cuvee or the 1118 yeast. It'll ferment it fine. Prep it with a starter...

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Old 01-10-2014, 03:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lukebuz View Post
Use Red Star Premier Cuvee or the 1118 yeast. It'll ferment it fine. Prep it with a starter...
It is true those yeasts have a good reputation with skeeter pee but the OP has already purchased his yeast and unless it is a train wreck of an idea lets support how he can make a great wine with what he has.

In future batches you may try one of the two above or my favorite 71b-1112. But I did not mention above as to why I think your yeast should be fine. Most beer yeasts are known for low ABV tolerance and many give distinct flavors that work for beers but not for wines. US-05 has a low diacetyl production which has a buttery flavor and lots of beer yeasts do produce plenty diacetyl. US-05 also is known for making good big beers or winter warmers with ABV ranges between 10% - 12%. So this yeast should handle the 1.07ish gravity you want to shoot for with ease. I say go for it and you may be so happy you never want to change the yeast. If you start the wine with no lemon up front with a lower gravity like 1.06 - 1.07 then I don't even think a starter is needed. Just go a little overboard on the nutrients and add your lemon in steps. It should be fine.
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Old 01-11-2014, 03:08 PM   #7
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Thanks guys. As for the yeast, once I started to read about fermented lemonade I realized I had the wrong yeast but I seen some vids of guys making lemonade with bread yeast. They "claimed" it wasn't too bad so I don't think the us-05 will be terrible, as long has it can handle the PH.

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Old 01-14-2014, 02:00 AM   #8
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So, just to update this. I went to purchase the frozen concentrate to do a batch of Yoopers hard lemonade. To my shegrinn, they didn't have any frozen lemonade! So I bought a mixture of what they had anyway. I basiclly followed her recipe and am making a starter with alittle must right now. My recipe was:

3 cans frozen limeade
4 cans pink lemonade
3 cans frozen 5 Alive
3kg white sugar
6tsp yeast nutrient
6 gallons water
11.5g Safale US-05

Yoopers recipe called for 7 cans for 3 gallons so I got 13 cans as that's all they had that was compadible. I dissolved the sugar in some water but wish I had used less, so I could have used more concentrate. SG is 1.070. I hoping for something that's not too strong. My plan is to ferment dry, backsweeten with splenda or crystal light and prime to bottle carb.

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Old 01-14-2014, 02:11 AM   #9
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I use fruit wine yeasts in all of my Pee brews, and use a lot of yeast energizer and nutrients

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Old 01-14-2014, 02:17 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokeyMcBong View Post
Truth be told, I was hoping for something carbonated. Would I be correct in thinking that I could leave out the kmeta and the sorbate, ferment it as dry as it will go, back sweeten with splenda and bottle carb with corn sugar?
Yup!

My skeeter-pee drinking friends and family prefer xylitol back sweetening to splenda - 'round these parts, works out to be cheaper, too.

I second the folks who say EC-1118 for a complete, dry ferment. I've used it in skeeter pee and a few meads, and it finishes bone dry, lets you back sweeten to where you like it, not just as sweet as the yeast feel like making it.
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