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Old 07-16-2012, 06:19 PM   #1
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Default Plum Wine, Complete newb! Save me from myself!

*Disclaimer*
Long time brewer, first time wine attempt.

That aside I have a plum tree that we picked and juiced. I want to make wine out of the juice but what I have doesn't fit into the plum recipee that yooper posted about a while back.
Plum Wine

We have a steamer for juicing fruit which we use for grapes a lot, so we pitted and tossed the plums in there and ended up with a gallon of pure plum juice.

So I have a gallon of rosy plum juice, looks almost like pink grapefruit juice.

My question is: Do I divide the juice in half and add half gallon of water/sugar to get to 1.100? I don't know the gravity of the pure plum juice yet, but I'm sure it's no where near the 1.100 range. I'm pretty sure i don't want to boil the juice to dissolve the sugar in.

All the recipee's I've seen suggest letting the fruit soak in the primary, and racking a few times. But I have fairly clear, pure, plum juice.

Any suggestions or guidance is greatly appreciated. The juice is just sitting in the fridge until I figure out what to do.

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Old 07-17-2012, 02:01 AM   #2
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I wouldnt dilute with water at all and hope to end up with a good medium to heavy body. The steam juicer has diluted it some also. I would also do a SG of 1.085-90 to preserve some of the plum taste and smell. Use winecalc http://mpesgens.home.xs4all.nl/thwp/winecalc.html if you dont want to just do an educated guess with a hydrometer. I always have just guessed with fingers crossed. I bet that 2.5 cups sugar will do for you to get to .85. Just add 1/4 cup juice or so to a pyrex measuring cup with the sugar and disolve in the microwave. I would also take the acid blend down a notch. Maybe 1/2 teaspoon to drop the pH a little but then add the blend in after bulk aging if that agrees with your tastebuds. Too many times have I followed recipes that call for acid blend and it develops too firm a backbone of acid after aging if left dry. Too many variations in the fruit and TA. Of course best would be to test the TA and shoot for .55-.65. Thats my 2cents. Good luck. I have an italian plum port that is coming up on a year of aging that is pretty awesome so far.

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Old 07-17-2012, 05:43 AM   #3
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Awesome thanks for the feedback and the calculator!

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Old 07-17-2012, 11:12 AM   #4
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There's a lot of acid in plums, so much so that I'd say dilute that juice; but I've never used a steam juicer, so I have no clue as to how much dilution that process might (or might not) cause. I can tell you from experience that pure plum juice (and prune juice) that's been fermented is way too tart to drink. I can also tell you that the excess tartness will eventually age out, but it might take a while, like a year or more, depending on the dilution of course. Hope this info helps.
Regards, GF.

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Old 07-17-2012, 11:40 AM   #5
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I made plum wine before, it was the best I've made. I made about a gallon of juice and diluted it and added sugar to get back to where i needed to be, it was more than sufficient to make a really good wine. If you search my old posts on wine I'm sure it's here somewhere.

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Old 08-14-2012, 05:47 PM   #6
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So I finally got the batch put together and it sitting in a few 1 gallon jugs atm.

My OG was 1.088. Thank you Calvus, that calculator is awesome.





I added a little to much on the yeast nutrient, I was in a hurry and mis read the quantity. Hope that doesn't affect it too much. Either way I suspect it will be a long time before I can try/taste them.

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Old 08-14-2012, 05:56 PM   #7
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Also when mixing the pure plum juice with water, 1-to-1 I had a gravity of 1.020, does that mean the pure plum juice had a SG of 1.040?

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Old 08-14-2012, 07:15 PM   #8
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I see you left a whole lot of head space at the top. With beer you have to worry about krausen, but not with wine. It has been my experience you top right up to the neck to minimize the the surface area making contact with air. Even with the most vigerous fermentation you won't have to worry about blow off tubes and You may want to take the bottle with the balloon and top up the two jugs to within an inch or so of the airlock. Save the mason jar one for when you rack them and need to top them up again.

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Old 08-14-2012, 11:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brazedowl View Post
I see you left a whole lot of head space at the top. With beer you have to worry about krausen, but not with wine. It has been my experience you top right up to the neck to minimize the the surface area making contact with air. Even with the most vigerous fermentation you won't have to worry about blow off tubes and You may want to take the bottle with the balloon and top up the two jugs to within an inch or so of the airlock. Save the mason jar one for when you rack them and need to top them up again.
Thanks, I was wondering about head space. I'll top off the gallon jugs!

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Old 08-15-2012, 03:56 PM   #10
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Irony... I topped off the gallon jugs as mentioned previously, and this morning I checked on them on my way to work. Both gallons have bubbled over, and the liquid level is back down to where I had it to begin with.

Looks like I should have gone with my gut feeling.

If this is not normal for wine, any idea why it over flowed? Keep in mind it doesn't look like a normal beer krausen, just a very active fermentation.

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