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Old 06-11-2007, 10:27 PM   #1
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Default Strawberry wine question

Hey,I'm in the middle of the pectic enzime breakdown of the fruit mash for this years 6 gallon strawberry wine batch and I've a question....
First the recipe(s)1st one a dryer drinking wine uses roughly 12.5# berries and 8#sugar-I used 20# berries and 10.5 # sugar last year,the 2nd one a sweeter desert type uses 25# berries and 12#sugar. Last batch had great berry aroma,good flavor and did pack a punch if the proper amount was consumed(ABV just over 13%). This year I'm doing the 25# batch per the recipe adding a little tannin and a small ammt.of acid blend(used both in table wine batch)to try and retain the aroma and depth. Question is recipesboth call for champagne yeast-I used Lalvin EC-1118 with great results I'd like to try Montrachet yeast to try and retain more of the berry body-Is this ok , or should I stick to the recipe and let the additional fruit do it's job? Any input would be appreciated. Thanks Shane

Yooper chick , I know You've got some input on this one....

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Old 06-11-2007, 11:28 PM   #2
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Wow- great question. I really don't know- I don't remember when I've used Montrachet yeast but I know I've used it. I checked my notes, and it looks like I've use cote des blancs, premier cuvee and champagne yeast for all my fruit wines. Here's what Jack Keller's site has on two yeast strains that I'd consider (besides the all purpose champagne yeast):


Côte des Blancs : Formerly known as Epernay 2, this is another slow fermenting, very low foaming yeast tolerant of low temperatures. It tends to bring out floral and fruity qualities in wines and can be useful in both grape--especially fruity German style whites-- and non-grape wines--such as peach or raspberry--where a bouquet is especially desired. This yeast will not push alcohol production over 13% in a cool fermentation.

Montrachet : Perhaps the most popular yeast used. It is available for both red and white wine fermentations and may be called Montrachet Red and Montrachet White. It works especially well in producing Chardonnay in barrel and stainless steel. It also tolerates sulfur dioxide well, but does not work well with high sugar levels (more than 23.5 percent). It is this ineffectiveness in high sugar levels that is most likely responsible for many stuck fermentations.


So, just based on that and my limited experience with cote des blancs yeast, it looks like that might be the one you want. I used premier cuvee in my last blackberry wine and I felt that I lost alot of the fruitiness and the bouquet. I found my notes where I talked about Montrachet- I used that in my rhubarb wine. That one is not very fruity, but crisp and dry. I wonder if that is because of the rhubarb (not really very fruity) or the yeast. Anyway, that's all the experience I have with these yeasts.

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Old 06-11-2007, 11:56 PM   #3
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Hey Yoop,Thanks for the quick reply. Looking at what you've just posted : based on the description of the yeast strains and the amount of available sugars both added and fruit content alone,I think I'll stick with the EC-1118. And the fact that I've had such good luck with it in the past.
I am however going to the LHBS in a couple weeks and think I'll pick up a handfull of different yeast strains-I never know when the bug to throw something together will hit. What's the best way and how long will the dry yeast packets keep ?
I just got off the tele with a buddy of mine and was told that the blueberries are now on the bush,and that they are plenteful and already good sized-I've got an empty 3 gallon carboy just screaming blueberry ! What do You think ?? Shane

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Old 06-12-2007, 01:13 AM   #4
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Any wine yeast will keep in the fridge for a long, long time- maybe 2 years or more depending on the date on the package.

I'm dying to try a blueberry wine- last year we didn't get any blueberries up here, but this year seems like it's going to be a good one. Jack Keller's site (jackkeller.net) lists some blueberry recipes, from heavy bodied to light. I think I'd do a medium bodied dry table wine since that's what I like to drink usually!

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Old 06-12-2007, 08:14 PM   #5
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Hey Yooperchick,Thanks for the P.M.
Just a tester to see if this is working. Thanks again . Shane

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