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Old 04-21-2009, 03:03 AM   #1
pizzaman
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Background: Over the last two years I have tried various ways of making wine. While I'm getting better and better at making beers and meads, I just can't seem to grasp this wine concoctificationism. The root of this problem is most likely that I have never had a wine that I enjoyed, and therefore I have no real base for how to make a good wine. I have been to a few wine-tasting classes and shows, sampled some of what others have said is very good wine...it all tastes like sour juice to me. Of course my wife loves wine, and will only allow me to continue brewing if I at least try to make her wine every now and then....

Foreground: So after bottling ten gallons of damned good beer today, I was looking at the shelf in my kitchen that has become my wine cabinet, cluttered with bottles of failed attempts at making drinkable wine, and in a drunken rage dumped all of it(no not down the drain silly, it is alcohol after all) into a carboy. I followed this with some orange juice(I have recently found that my wife loves a properly fermented orange juice), some various fermentable sugars I have had success with in making beers and meads, poured in some dissolved tannin, acid blend, pectic enzyme, yeast nutrient, and crushed campden tablets, and sealed it up to rest for a day or so. The abv of all the wines added was 10-12%, after the additional sugars the gravity was up to 1.045 which should make for an additional 6% abv if anything happens to this globbitygoop. It's resting now, I'll be pitching some montrachet onto it tomorrow night....I can't help but wonder if the homebrewing gods will forgive me for making something so terribly awful. Thinking back on it now, my thought process must've gone something like this: "None of this wine tastes any good, people drink it when I put it in front of them, but never EVER ask for more...maybe if I mix it all together and bump up the alcohol noone will ever NEED to ask for more...muahahahaha(laughter trails off into the darkness with me madly pouring gallons of crappy wine into a carboy)"



 
Old 04-21-2009, 03:13 AM   #2
TwoHeadsBrewing
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Hey, if it makes good drink do it! Just write down what went in so you can reproduce it if you accidentally make a fantastic concoctionificationary wonder!

Alternately, when you come across a bad bottle of red wine, do what the young kids in spain do: get a bottle of cola, drink half and fill it up with the swill. Actually not a bad drink!

Ah, here's the link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calimocho


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Old 04-21-2009, 03:55 AM   #3
Mr. Nice Guy
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allllriiiiggghhhtttyyyy then
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Old 04-21-2009, 06:33 AM   #4
virus692
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I am just going to back slowly out of this thread now...
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Old 04-23-2009, 04:01 PM   #5
pizzaman
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2 days after pitching now...still no noticeable airlock activity...starting to wonder if I should pitch again from a well-built starter. I've been giving the carboy a swirl every now and again and when I do so it bubbles up, but the airlock does nothing. I'll probably just leave it alone for a week and take a gravity reading, if it's still high I'll pitch from a starter and give it another try.

 
Old 04-23-2009, 04:59 PM   #6
Mr. Nice Guy
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Try the starter. If your pH is way low from the juice it may take a few days to start. A tiny bit of calcium carbonate could help if the problem is pH.
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Old 04-23-2009, 07:09 PM   #7
pizzaman
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According to the wiki, a starter can kill a dry yeast and since all I use is dry yeast I won't be doing that...

 
Old 04-23-2009, 09:02 PM   #8
giligson
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Quote:
Originally Posted by virus692 View Post
I am just going to back slowly out of this thread now...
I really should follow suit but I just can't help myself:

You need to acclimate your starter to the higher alcohol concentration.
Get a good starter going and then pour in an equal amount of your devils concotion, if you have the patients repeat this one more time when the yeast gets going again - then pour the whole works into your fermentation vessle.
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Old 04-23-2009, 09:22 PM   #9
pizzaman
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Thanks for the replies. Since all I have is dry yeast I wont be doing a starter. When I pitched I rehydrated in warm water with some honey in it, this should be fine. I do understand the idea of making a starter to handle a high-alcohol must, but this must is only 1.045..not high at all for any wine yeast. I am wondering if the must having alcohol in it already could be causing a late start, though I really doubt it as in the past I have repitched already high alcohol meads with added honey and gotten good results. I'll continue waiting and check gravity on monday.

 
Old 04-23-2009, 10:14 PM   #10
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have you ever tried a wine kit? I"m on my first ever wine fermentation and used a Wine Expert kit. It was stupidly easy, and even though its not bottled yet, its already tasting like a decent Chianti (a bit thin but that was expected since its at the lower end of thier kits).

I started hitting winetalk.com and people there make wine from welch's very successfully, though I bet it takes a little aging and getting used to vs. 'traditional' wines.


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