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Old 08-21-2010, 10:04 PM   #1
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I am working on my first batch of fruit wine. My wife really likes the sweet wines, so when I added my sugar, I added more than the recipe called for. My starting SG was 1.118. All has been going well, fermentation in progress, SG dropping and is now 1.022 which is right at 12.5% ABV.

If I let it go to 1.00 or below, the ABV is going to be 15.5% or higher. I have a few questions that some of you pros may be able to help answer.....

1. I'm sure the higher ABV will be nice, but is it going to drastically affect the taste?

2. Is it going to have a high alcohol flavor and be very dry?

3. Should I stop the fermentation and if so what is the best method?

4. Or should I not worry about it and back sweeten at bottling time and hope to get lucky?

Any advice you have is appreciated!

Thanks!!!
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Old 08-22-2010, 12:19 AM   #2
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Stopping an active fermentation is like stopping a freight train- I've never had good luck doing that. You could attempt it you need to- you can rack the wine and add sorbate and campden to it and then chill it. When the yeast falls out and the wine is clear, rack it again. That might be enough to stop it, but I've never been able to do it.

A super high OG could create a wine that tastes like rocket fuel and may take several years to age out. I like to make my fruit wines at 1.085-1.090 usually, since wine yeast will ferment dry, usually to .990 or so. So, starting at 1.110 isn't too bad I guess.

I usually allow my wines to finish, clear, and age a bit before stabilizing and sweetening if needed. That's just always been my way, and it's definitely the easy way.

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Old 08-22-2010, 12:46 AM   #3
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If an experienced man such as you with 25,000 posts can't stop a freight train fermentation, I will not even attempt it. When the SG stops dropping, I will rack, back sweeten at bottling and call it PORT! My brother-in-law loves port!

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Old 08-22-2010, 01:34 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rickochet View Post
If an experienced man such as you with 25,000 posts can't stop a freight train fermentation, I will not even attempt it. When the SG stops dropping, I will rack, back sweeten at bottling and call it PORT! My brother-in-law loves port!
Well, I'm pretty experienced but I know that a few others have done it successfully. I've just never had luck with it. It's probably possible, with some effort.

(I'm not a man, by the way!)
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Old 08-22-2010, 11:55 AM   #5
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Well, I'm pretty experienced but I know that a few others have done it successfully. I've just never had luck with it. It's probably possible, with some effort.

(I'm not a man, by the way!)
Er....... make that experienced lady!!!!! Sorry about that!

But thanks again for your speedy reply! It looks like you have helped many men AND women work through some interesting home brewing & wine making quandaries.

Rick
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