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Old 07-06-2008, 05:33 AM   #1
MellowToad
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Default Strong Black Berry Champagne...

Hey folks,

I've got a lot of fresh blackberries and am looking at making a strong black berry champagne/wine.

When making a strong beer, I've always added extra wort to my main wort over a period of days in order to not overwhelm my yeast. I'm checking to see if that is something that is recommended with what I'm doing here also.

Also going to see if you all can help me build a recipe. Right now, I'm looking at making a five gallon batch. With the Lavlin EC-118 yeast, which finishes at about 18%, I know this is something that will need to be aged for quite some time, but am willing to accept this as I've got some of Ed Wort's finest which will be drinkable here in about two weeks as well as about 200 beers of 8 different varieties in the cellar now.

So far I've got about 8 pounds of black berries and about twenty pounds of dextrose. Also got wine nutrient and five gallons of spring water. Am using Lavlin EC-118 at the recommendation of my LBHS employee. What should I mix together, or at what percentages? Any help or ideas?

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Old 07-06-2008, 10:02 AM   #2
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First, you'll need more blackberries. For a 5 gallon batch I would use at least 15 lbs worth. That lavlin yeast is pretty robust, you could probably get away with dumping all the sugar in at once. When making something with high gravity, it's never a bad idea to do sugar additions. I do that with any meads I make. I wouldn't use 20 lbs of dextrose though. That's a LOT of sugar! I would stick with 10 lbs at the most.

If you've got a bucket that's larger than 5 gallons that would be best. When adding the blackberries, put the blackberry solids in a grainbag for easy removal when it's time to rack out of the primary.

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Old 07-06-2008, 03:44 PM   #3
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My blackberry wine is around 13%, if I remember correctly. It's been aging almost two years, and is still too "hot" to drink.

You could look at my recipe, and just boost the fermentables if you want.

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Old 07-06-2008, 06:08 PM   #4
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Hey Yooper, I feel like Im stalking your fruit wine conversations but, what do you mean by to "hot" to drink, last recipie I read for blackberry wine said ready to drink by bottling time, only my mulberry recipie said it required long ageing to perfect.

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Old 07-06-2008, 06:14 PM   #5
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"Hot" means that it actually tastes hot from the alcohol. Kind of a burning effect, and you can't really taste much else (the fruitiness, etc) except the alcohol.

A lower alcohol wine will be ready to drink in a short period of time, generally speaking. Also, whites are ready sooner, too, as a general rule. Something like elderberries, with alot of tannin, takes longer to be smooth and drinkable.

If you want a quicker wine to drink, try a simple lower ABV wine like the Welch's grape wine (white or red) or the apple juice wine. You can drink them in less than 6 months, although longer aging will improve the flavor.

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