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MzAnnie 08-30-2012 11:20 AM

Racking Epiphany
1 Attachment(s)
While racking my buckets of wine, today, there wasn't much else to do, while riding out Iaasic, I put all my gross lees in a container to be taken outside when the torrent let up. Hating waste, as I do, I wondered, everytime I walked by my container, if the lees could be used for something OTHER than getting the worms (and the neighbor's dog),in my compost pile, intoxicated. Then it happened, a brainfart of epic proportions...mystery wine!!! So my question is, has any one ever tried reusing the juice from the lees? I put a twenty pound weight on them and squeezed (squoze?) out as much juice as I could, then put it in a gallon jug with about three cups of inverted sugar, left over from a failed experiment. Can I keep adding more mystery juice, everytime I rack? Can I keep it going until I have a five gallon bucket full? Like they do with Amish Friendship bread, only better. Any help/hints would be appreciated. Thank you.Attachment 73865

Unferth 08-30-2012 09:53 PM

Very green of you, MzAnnie. I'm not sure if I'd wanna drink the wine made out of that though... but who knows. That looks pretty gross!

I try to save everything, filter it, and distill it when I've got a big enough batch. It generally doesn't come out as first class brandy, perse, but if you run it twice, cut it with 1/2 cheap wine and 1/2 tap water, it is very drinkable. Waste not, want not you know.

MzAnnie 08-31-2012 01:02 PM

Yea, I figure that is why they call them gross lees. I am glad to see that someone else does this. The first class brandy makes me laugh too. I am a 'dark ages' wine maker...I use balloons instead of airlocks, tea towels and paint strainers, and five gallon buckets with waxed in tubing. Fine winemaker, I am not. But it tastes so delish and gives you a helluva buzz!!! I also believe in putting back what you take out, BUT I really don't want to put back so much leftover alcohol!!! Thank you-Annie

jensmith 08-31-2012 01:39 PM

I have a batch of "leftover mush and lees" in fermenting. I added extra suger and water. Very tasty so far. However I restarted it the same day I racked off the slop I did use. No saving up and waiting for a full batch. It is however a combanaition of sevearal different batches and ages of wine stuff I happened to rack off on the same day. Second fruit, lees from a third and second racking and some yeasy cake off of the botten of the carboy. Plum is the stongest flavor so far. I am sure I will have lots of solids on the bottem when it is all done. Even if all I get is a galeon of finished wine, all it will have cost me is a little suger! If it is low in flavore it will work as a top off wine for bigger batches that have too much head space. Gotta be better then using water!

oogaboogachiefwalkingdeer 08-31-2012 03:07 PM

I too save every last drop. I found a way to get all the liquid and very few lees from the first racking. After you rack off all the good stuff and have two or three inch's of pulp left put it into a plastic milk jug and let sit over night. Next day place jug into a large flat clean dish that will hold how ever much liquid there is in the jug. Next take an ice pick and heat the tip on stove and poke a small hole right above the pulp line. I do mean small you don't want a stream just a trickle will do. In about thirty minutes remove jug and funnel collected wine into a bottle for topping or whatever you wish. Mike

MzAnnie 09-01-2012 03:50 PM

Cool ideas!!! My epiphany was a shared psychic experience implanted by alien winemakers. I never thought to use it to top off other wine. Mostly, I got the idea from when I make cheese and the cheese is the 'gross lees'. But I save the whey too. I think in clinical circles there is a name for people like us...it rhymes with boarders!!!:) I have about 8 five gallon buckets going, so I am going to use these ideas to keep the vino rolling. The very worst thing that can happen, is that I have to use a shot glass, instead of a wine glass!!!

mrdillon5 09-02-2012 08:19 PM

I haven't done it with juice but when I make a fruited mead I follow it up with a fruited wine made up with the leftovers from the mead. Leftovers being partially used fruit, with spent yeast. Just add some sugar and grape juice and you will have anther batch going!

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