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Old 04-17-2013, 09:51 PM   #1
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Default Question about using various fruits

Apoligies in advance if there's a thread that already covers this that I can't seem to find..


It seems that i've read a few different ways to utilize fruits in wines during (mainly) primary fermentation. Seems like some crush fruits and place in the primary. Seems like some add in whole or sliced into a few slices and throw in the primary. I've also read how people puree the fruits in a blender or processor and throw the pulp into the primary... Lastly... I read about how others will make use of a strainer bag or panty hose or pour hot water or must over the bag with fruit in the primary.


I suppose, what i'm looking for, is a collection of opinions and suggestions on what seems to work the best for everyone. The very first batch of fruit wine I ever tried (years ago) was white grape concentrate and slices of peach. For some reason it came out smelling rotton so i've always been hesitatant to place chunks of fruit in the fermentors again and just stuck with fruit concentrates.

I want to start a few 1 gallon test batches soon so i've been trying to research what works and what doesn't.



Thanks in advance for your words of wisdom!



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Old 04-17-2013, 10:05 PM   #2
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For grapes I just mash 'em up with a potato masher for small batches. No bag.

For strawberries I just quarter them and put them in a bag in the primary.

For blueberries and raisins I blend them and put the puree in a bag in the primary.



What fruit are you using?



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Old 04-17-2013, 10:57 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brazedowl View Post
For grapes I just mash 'em up with a potato masher for small batches. No bag.

For strawberries I just quarter them and put them in a bag in the primary.

For blueberries and raisins I blend them and put the puree in a bag in the primary.



What fruit are you using?
Sweet. Any particular reasons for doing the different things with the different fruits?

I plan to put together a mixed berry wine and mead soon. Blackberry, Blueberry, raspberry and strawberries. I figured I would just lightly smash it all up and toss it all in without any bag. I figure it will ferment either way. Just not entirely sure i'm making it easy for myself or if i'm getting the most out of the fruit.. OR.. If I don't even need to worry around smashing them up.
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Old 04-17-2013, 11:50 PM   #4
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well with the little berries I like to use a bag because it's hard to get all the bits out if it's just floating around in there. The seeds in blackberries can be murder. Made one of my wines almost crunchy.

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Old 04-18-2013, 12:00 AM   #5
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If you don't use a mesh bag for your fruits, it's almost impossible to remove them on day 5 or so. And racking with pieces of pureed fruit is likewise impossible.

A mesh bag just contains the mess and makes it easier to handle the wine. The bag should have the fruit in there very loose, and not compacted at all. You want the fruit to be relatively free flowing, but contained so it's easier to remove.

Also, stirring down the cap twice a day is easier when the fruit is in a bag.

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Old 04-18-2013, 01:05 AM   #6
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USE THE BAG. I know, from personal experience, that fermented fruit is mushy, fragmented and a pain in the butt for all the reasons yooper mentioned. I've had clogged racking tubes, fruit stuck in carboys, etc, and I still have the odd small particle in my raspberry, 4 months after the start date. The bags make life so much easier.

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Old 04-18-2013, 12:31 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brazedowl View Post
well with the little berries I like to use a bag because it's hard to get all the bits out if it's just floating around in there. The seeds in blackberries can be murder. Made one of my wines almost crunchy.
Makes sense to me

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
If you don't use a mesh bag for your fruits, it's almost impossible to remove them on day 5 or so. And racking with pieces of pureed fruit is likewise impossible.

A mesh bag just contains the mess and makes it easier to handle the wine. The bag should have the fruit in there very loose, and not compacted at all. You want the fruit to be relatively free flowing, but contained so it's easier to remove.

Also, stirring down the cap twice a day is easier when the fruit is in a bag.
Excellent points. Thank you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluespark View Post
USE THE BAG. I know, from personal experience, that fermented fruit is mushy, fragmented and a pain in the butt for all the reasons yooper mentioned. I've had clogged racking tubes, fruit stuck in carboys, etc, and I still have the odd small particle in my raspberry, 4 months after the start date. The bags make life so much easier.
Exactly what I needed to hear. Thank you guys for the quick responses and for making my life easier regarding these next few batches. haha.

Time for me to search the webs for a couple bags. Until then, at least for this weekend, i'll probably just use a pair of sterilized panty hose or stockings.. Whatever they are called.


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