Banana Wine

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Blacksmith1

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This particular bucket has a killer seal. The air lock only had water on the outlet side of the S. No air got to the headspace till I opened it to rack. I only seem to have this smell with stuff I prep for must, none of the premade juice I have used does this....
 

Virginia13

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In regards to why you want to keep the peel on, the peel is a source of amylase, an enzyme that activates after boiling and helps turn the starches into sugars.
 

Blacksmith1

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I pitched on 5/22. By 7/22 it was crystal clear. Today I racked onto the raisins. Two questions.
Is there a reason other than "it's the recipe" to use a pound per gallon? I did mine onto 3lbs (it's what I had), I can always get more.
Do I need active yeast at this point? I'm thinking there's little to none in it but I can add a starter if needed.
Can already taste where it's going, not to bad so far.
 

Blacksmith1

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So, to answer my own question. There was enough yeast left that after a month of sitting it is again producing CO2, not much at this point, but the little zombie raisins are rising from the dead. Some are at the top, some are suspended mid way, some are gray.
Still not sure about the amount.
 

James0816

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BANANA WINE (2) [Heavy Bodied]

3-1/2 lb. bananas
1 lb. chopped golden raisins
2 lb. granulated sugar
1-1/4 tsp. acid blend
1 tsp. pectic enzyme
1/4 tsp. grape tannin
1 gallon water
wine yeast and nutrient
Slice bananas into thin discs, leaving skins on fruit. Put into grain-bag, tie top, and place in 6 pints water. Bring to boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove grain-bag to bowl to catch drippings while pouring liquor over sugar in primary fermentation vessel and stirring well to dissolve sugar. Add acid blend, pectic enzyme and tannin, stirring again. When grain-bag cools, squeeze to extract as much liquid as possible and add liquid and drippings to liquor, discarding pulp. When liquor cools to 70 degrees fahrenheit, add yeast and nutrient. Cover and set in warm place for seven days, stirring daily. Pour into secondary fermentation vessel, fit airlock, and move to cooler place, leaving undisturbed for two months. Siphon off sediment, add chopped raisins, and add water to bring to one gallon. Ferment another four months. Rack and allow to clear. Rack again and bottle. May taste after six months, but matures at two years. [Adapted from passed-on recipe, source unknown, taken from Jack Keller's site]
Are you adding the other two pints of water in the primary or is that reserve for the topping off in secondary?
 

Blacksmith1

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Just racked off the raisins. Since it went in a smaller carboy there was a bit of extra, of course I had to taste it.
While it smells much better, is it supposed to taste like sawdust at this point?
 

Kalaloch

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Just racked off the raisins. Since it went in a smaller carboy there was a bit of extra, of course I had to taste it.
While it smells much better, is it supposed to taste like sawdust at this point?
Yes sawdust and jet fuel. But wait 2 years and you will be greatly rewarded. I am just coming up on 2 years and mine tastes like a good white wine. I made 5 gallons as I figured 2 years is a long time to wait and I might as well have more wine.
 

Blacksmith1

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Thanks. Good to know as I have 6 1/2 gallons after racking off the raisins. Or 5 1/2.... gotta measure that carboy.
 

bjhbrew

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I'm hoping to get some help with wrapping up this recipe as my first attempt at making wine. I started the batch in October 2019; I followed the recipe closely (scaled to 6G) however found that I didn't need as much water as stated. My OG was 1.107 but still netted me enough wine to to fill a 23L carboy upon racking to secondary. 2 months later I racked onto the raisins in another 23L carboy and had enough left over to fill a 1L bottle with airlock.

So, fast forward to today: The wine has been on the raisins for 5 months (was fun to watch them bob up and down) the raisins have now settled and the wine is beautifully clear! I'm wondering how to proceed now with racking, sulphiting, and bottling. My first though is that when I rack I'm probably going to lose a lot of volume to the raisins (am I right in assuming they will clog the racking cane if I go below the mass?) So if I rack into another carboy and include the extra 1L from the bottle I think I'd still be significantly short. What do I top up with? Is pre-boiled water acceptable given the high starting gravity or will that dilute the taste? Finally, would it be better to add some campden now when I rack it and then bottle in a few weeks, or just rack carefully and add the campden at bottling time?

Sorry for all the questions! If you made it to the bottom, I appreciate your help.
 

Davedrinksbeer

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I'm hoping to get some help with wrapping up this recipe as my first attempt at making wine. I started the batch in October 2019; I followed the recipe closely (scaled to 6G) however found that I didn't need as much water as stated. My OG was 1.107 but still netted me enough wine to to fill a 23L carboy upon racking to secondary. 2 months later I racked onto the raisins in another 23L carboy and had enough left over to fill a 1L bottle with airlock.

So, fast forward to today: The wine has been on the raisins for 5 months (was fun to watch them bob up and down) the raisins have now settled and the wine is beautifully clear! I'm wondering how to proceed now with racking, sulphiting, and bottling. My first though is that when I rack I'm probably going to lose a lot of volume to the raisins (am I right in assuming they will clog the racking cane if I go below the mass?) So if I rack into another carboy and include the extra 1L from the bottle I think I'd still be significantly short. What do I top up with? Is pre-boiled water acceptable given the high starting gravity or will that dilute the taste? Finally, would it be better to add some campden now when I rack it and then bottle in a few weeks, or just rack carefully and add the campden at bottling time?

Sorry for all the questions! If you made it to the bottom, I appreciate your help.
Do NOT top off with water. At this point if the wine is clear just transfer all the clear good wine to another carboy and add your sulphites. Gently stir to get it dissolved in. Let it sit a few weeks maybe a month and then bottle. If you want to keep it in the carboy for a year then just drop in some sanitize marbles to bring the volume of wine up to the neck of the carboy.
 

Kalaloch

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I made 5 gallons of this banana wine and I agree with @Davedrinksbeer on what he said.

Here are my added thoughts...

If I remember correctly you will lose a ton of volume to the raisins. But do NOT top off with that much water. I believe you mentioned this is currently in a 6 gallon carboy. You may actually need to rack (transfer) it to a 5 gallon carboy because of loss of volume.

If you have a few inches of head space once you rack it out of the 6 gallon carboy then you WILL need to add water so that there is LESS THAN 1 inch of head space (empty room between wine and bottom of bung plug). You should only use distilled water going forward (for topping off and if mixing water with sulphates).

I would rack it off 6 gallon carboy then add Camden tablets (crush 1 tablet for every gallon and add a little distilled water... I don’t remember if you boil water and tablets?) then wait 24 hours then rack into bottling bucket then bottle.

Also don’t soak wine corks for very long, most just soak for 1 minute in sanitizer.

Good luck!
 

bjhbrew

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Hmmm, sorry but I’m still a little confused about my options. Do I have this right?

  1. I could rack into 6 gallon carboy add sulphate and leave for up to a month without worrying about extra headspace. Bottle after a month
  2. I could rack into a smaller carboy to prevent extra headspace (unfortunately all my car boys are 6g currently). Is this assuming extended aging?
  3. I could rack into another carboy with sulphide then bottle the next day. I guess I just have to be careful not to pick up any sediment when racking.
Is there a best option here?
 

Davedrinksbeer

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Hmmm, sorry but I’m still a little confused about my options. Do I have this right?

  1. I could rack into 6 gallon carboy add sulphate and leave for up to a month without worrying about extra headspace. Bottle after a month
  2. I could rack into a smaller carboy to prevent extra headspace (unfortunately all my car boys are 6g currently). Is this assuming extended aging?
  3. I could rack into another carboy with sulphide then bottle the next day. I guess I just have to be careful not to pick up any sediment when racking.
Is there a best option here?
The main reason wine makers leave wines in a carboy for 1-2 years is they like to make adjustments to the wine and you can’t do it if it’s bottled. With this banana wine there’s really nothing more you can do, you are fine transferring it into a 6 gallon carboy, sulphite it and let it sit for a few weeks at most a month. I wouldn’t really go over a month because of oxidation possibilities. I’m just saying let it sit another few weeks to let any yeast/whatever fall out. Then bottle. It will age fine in the bottle. I believe I aged my Banana Wine 6 months then I bottled. Mines right at 2 years now, I need to try it.
Also please do not top off with water, you want to get the same or similar Type wine to top off with. Water Dilutes the flavor of your wine.
 

Erik the Awful

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Wow! Just discovered this forum. I've been making wine for a couple years now, and I'm pretty sure I'm mostly doing it wrong, but my successes outnumber my failures. I just bottled a Banana-Potato wine that I started in January. My wife keeps buying bananas, and we're always left with a couple uneaten, so I've been peeling them and putting them in the freezer (yeah, no peels). I discovered half a bag of potatoes that were getting a little soft. I'm not afraid to experiment, so I decided on my next wine. I was really surprised with how good it turned out.

A few comments:
I'm not aggressive enough with the campden tablets. When I bottled this I also had a pear wine going that was fabulous, but the last racking it turned to vinegar. I've been only using campden when starting primary fermentation. In the future I'm going to use it every other racking.

I use Lalvin EC-1118 because I'm in Oklahoma, and my fermentation buckets sit in the garage, whether it's 30 degrees or 100 degrees. I haven't had a problem with the wild swings in temperature with the EC-1118.

Banana-Potato Wine, started 20200107

Approx 4 lbs potatoes
1½ lbs raisins, straight from box (Why bother reconstituting? Same ingredients going into the pot.)
Approx 1-2 lb bananas
5 lbs sugar (10 cups)
2 gallons water
Blended mixture
Simmered 1 hour
Did I screen to primary bucket?
Added 3 campden tablets
Rested 24 hours

20200108
Stirred
Added Lalvin EC-1118 yeast

20200115
Aggressive fermentation stopped abruptly
Screened to secondary fermentation
Lost about half volume

20200315
Racked. Sediment was nearly a solid cake in the bottom. Very clear.
Down to 2 gallons
Tastes like bananas, but dry.
Added ½ gallon water mixed with 4 cups sugar. ¾ gallon total.

20200511
Bottled. Very clear. Very little sediment at the bottom of the secondary bucket.
Nicely sweet, no aftertaste.
Excellent!
 

JordanfromOK

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Thanks for sharing this recipe Yooper.
New brewer slowly (Too cheap to go buy everything needed to produce a bunch of different brews) branching out into the hobby. I'll have to pick up the campden tablets and maybe the 1118, but might just make a 1 gal batch to get this going sooner than later with the 1/3 pack of Cote de Blanc I have.

@Erik the Awful
Glad to see a fellow Okie on here.
Happy brewing🍻
 

globell

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Yooper....if you had to share what type of wine this tastes like would it be Riesling? Sauv Blanc? Just as a ball park style :). Just trying to get a feel for how it feels on the palate. Trying this real soon
 
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Yooper....if you had to share what type of wine this tastes like would it be Riesling? Sauv Blanc? Just as a ball park style :). Just trying to get a feel for how it feels on the palate. Trying this real soon
No, it has some body. Maybe a texture/mouthfeel more like chardonnay if I had to describe it.
 

Beer_Me33

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Hi guys, I've had this in my secondary for 2 months now and the sediment doesn't seem to be dropping out of suspension so I can rack again. I followed the instructions very clearly. Been stored at around 68 degrees. Any help would be great!
 
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Davedrinksbeer

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Hi guys, I've had this in my secondary for 2 months now and the sediment doesn't seem to be dropping out of suspension so I can rack again. I followed the instructions very clearly. Been stored at around 68 degrees. Any help would be great!
It’s looks like you got a little bit of clear wine on the top is that correct? I remember mine being like that and slowly over time it all fell to the bottom but i believe mine was clear under the 2 month mark. Maybe give it a few more weeks or a month, this wine is NOT going to be drinkable to around the year mark anyhow so really No need to rush it. You could try giving the carboy a Very Gently Bounce and I mean Gentle on your carpet and see if the vibration helps it break up and fall to the bottom or you drop in your wine degasser rod And give it a gentle nudge to see if that helps
It drop. Yours looks like a floating island for some reason, I had a island of crud on top but I also had a lot of crud on the bottom. Odd but I’d probably wait it out a little longer and hope Gravity pulls it down until I started to take extra measures
 

Beer_Me33

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It’s looks like you got a little bit of clear wine on the top is that correct? I remember mine being like that and slowly over time it all fell to the bottom but i believe mine was clear under the 2 month mark. Maybe give it a few more weeks or a month, this wine is NOT going to be drinkable to around the year mark anyhow so really No need to rush it. You could try giving the carboy a Very Gently Bounce and I mean Gentle on your carpet and see if the vibration helps it break up and fall to the bottom or you drop in your wine degasser rod And give it a gentle nudge to see if that helps
It drop. Yours looks like a floating island for some reason, I had a island of crud on top but I also had a lot of crud on the bottom. Odd but I’d probably wait it out a little longer and hope Gravity pulls it down until I started to take extra measures
Yes, there is definitely separation at the top and its quite clear for about 2". I'm just surprised that it hasn't dropped farther out of suspension like others have noted. I think I will take your advise and wait a bit longer and then try a gentle bounce/vibration and see if that helps. I wonder if the fermentation stalled. It was active for the first 10 days before I racked into the secondary carboy from the bucket. Do you think I should take a gravity reading on the clear liquid on top to make sure? TIA
 

Davedrinksbeer

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Yes, there is definitely separation at the top and its quite clear for about 2". I'm just surprised that it hasn't dropped farther out of suspension like others have noted. I think I will take your advise and wait a bit longer and then try a gentle bounce/vibration and see if that helps. I wonder if the fermentation stalled. It was active for the first 10 days before I racked into the secondary carboy from the bucket. Do you think I should take a gravity reading on the clear liquid on top to make sure? TIA
I’d just wait it out another month. Even though you did a transfer there should still be plenty of yeast in there to eat any remaining sugars. Like I said beforeReally no rush, my banana wine tasted like A$$ after 6 months. 🤣 It was drinkable at 9 months and was good at a year. Seemed to get really good around the 18 month mark.
Idea, get a marker and put a black line on there where it’s clear and see if it’s dropping any after a few days or a week.
I can’t tell if you got enough clear wine on the top to get a hydrometer read.
 

Beer_Me33

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Thanks for tips! I'll be patience and see what happens.
 

Davedrinksbeer

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Thanks for tips! I'll be patience and see what happens.
basically you know your screwed if black or green fuzzy floating stuff (mold) shows up on top Or it gets a real bad stinky odor to it. Overall I think it looks fine, I remember that’s how mine looked, just wait it out a little longer.
Good Luck.
 

Beer_Me33

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Update: so I was patient and waited. A little bit more settled. Maybe 1/2". So I tested the top clear liquid. Gravity is .990. The sample is bubbling so lots of c02 in the sample. Tastes a bit harsh as expected. But clean. So no off flavours for a young sample. Can smell bananas. Don't seem to have any kind of infection. So my next step I think is I'm going to try racking with a paint straining bag over the autosyphon and see if I can transfer some of the liquid from what looks like proteins. FYI, the pic of the carboy is after I moved it for the night to siphon tomorrow. So its stirred up a bit moving it.
 

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Davedrinksbeer

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Update: so I was patient and waited. A little bit more settled. Maybe 1/2". So I tested the top clear liquid. Gravity is .990. The sample is bubbling so lots of c02 in the sample. Tastes a bit harsh as expected. But clean. So no off flavours for a young sample. Can smell bananas. Don't seem to have any kind of infection. So my next step I think is I'm going to try racking with a paint straining bag over the autosyphon and see if I can transfer some of the liquid from what looks like proteins. FYI, the pic of the carboy is after I moved it for the night to siphon tomorrow. So its stirred up a bit moving it.
you got any way to cold crash it for a few days in a refrigerator to get more of that stuff to sink to the bottom? Surprised more of the junk has sank to the bottom with as much time has passed by.
 

Beer_Me33

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Yes I have fermentation fridge that I could try and drop the temp down and see if that helps. I had it stored in my crawl space thats around 65 F. But maybe try cold crashing it since there was no issue with fermentation. Thank you for the suggestion!
 

Davedrinksbeer

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Yes I have fermentation fridge that I could try and drop the temp down and see if that helps. I had it stored in my crawl space thats around 65 F. But maybe try cold crashing it since there was no issue with fermentation. Thank you for the suggestion!
My basement is 65ish but man when I drop a carboy of wine in my kegerator it’s amazing how much sediment will drop out of it. Good Luck,
I got a Apple, Concord and Plum wines in secondary now, bought some 5 gallon bucket of juices from Walkers online, curious to see how these turn out.
 

Beer_Me33

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So I cold crashed for around 10 days at 1 deg C. As you can see in the first picture no more dropped out of suspension.

I tried racking to another carboy with a paint straining bag and to see if I could get rid of some of the sediment. Its so thick that I had to pour it. It appears that maybe only part of the wine fermented. I tasted it and its still very sweet and tastes like when I first made it. Wondering if I should repitch yeast or dump it?
 

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Davedrinksbeer

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So I cold crashed for around 10 days at 1 deg C. As you can see in the first picture no more dropped out of suspension.

I tried racking to another carboy with a paint straining bag and to see if I could get rid of some of the sediment. Its so thick that I had to pour it. It appears that maybe only part of the wine fermented. I tasted it and its still very sweet and tastes like when I first made it. Wondering if I should repitch yeast or dump it?
i don’t know what to suggest 🤷‍♂️. It should have cleared by now. If the gravity is 1.00 or less it should be done fermenting and it should be clear by now. If You want to warm it up in the low 70’s and throw in some EC 1118 yeast and maybe add some yeast nutrient to see what happens is all I know of to do.
 

Beer_Me33

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I've never had wine or beer do this before. Very strange. Its almost as though half the liquid fermented if that makes sense. I say that because the liquid on top that separated definitely fermented but the rest is very sweet. I agree with warming it up and repitching. Seems like a waste to dump it. Thanks. I will update later.
 

Beer_Me33

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I let the carboy warm up and fermentation started without repitching. The only mistake I can think I made was when I transfered the original bucket after a week into the secondary it hadn't began as vigorous fermentation as I had thought. And I moved it into a cooler environment. Will wait and see what happens.
 

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KI6FG

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Can the left over "Zombie Raisins" be re-fermented?
 

James0816

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So only on Page 8 of this thread getting as much knowledge I can before I get this started this weekend but have a quick question. For all those of you who said they have "forgotten" about theirs being in the secondary, how was your airlock not dry and thus exposing the wine to oxygen? I'm constantly checking my airlocks to ensure they don't dry out.

back to my reading......
 

Davedrinksbeer

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So only on Page 8 of this thread getting as much knowledge I can before I get this started this weekend but have a quick question. For all those of you who said they have "forgotten" about theirs being in the secondary, how was your airlock not dry and thus exposing the wine to oxygen? I'm constantly checking my airlocks to ensure they don't dry out.

back to my reading......
think on the 3rd or 4th month, when it was pretty clear, I just switched to a solid rubber bung/cork and forgot about it.
 

James0816

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Done reading. (lol ... i see where i was actually going to do this a couple years ago but never did). anyway.... couple more quick questions.....

Yeast nutrient - how much is used? Is it the standard 1tsp/g?

To anyone who has flavored this, i would like hear more about the addition of cinnamon and vanilla to this? those flavors pair well with banana.
 
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