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Fruit wine-campden or no campden?

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May1gonow

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Hi! First time brewer here, read many posts on this site which were informative, so I signed up today.
I am hoping to make a raspberry-pear wine in some store-bought white grape juice. Reading through instructions again, I think I missed a step.
Washed all fruit in water, then soaked in a vinegar-water solution for 10 minutes, then rinsed again. Boiled the new fermenting bags for 10 minutes, sanitized airlocks and anything I was going to use to touch the wine or sugar or fruit.
I then put the pears and raspberries in the fermenting bags, and awkwardly stuffed the 2 bags through the hole in the top of the container, and added back in some of the juice that I had mixed with sugar and wine yeast. I did not boil the fruit or add campden tablets, although I did the vinegar soak.
Can anyone tell me if I should just leave it, or if I should add a campden tablet now and then add more yeast in 24 hours, or just chuck the whole project and start anew? I don’t want to grow anything unhealthy!
Thank you so much in advance!
 

toadie

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Welcome and a quick comment or two. First I simply freeze my fruit (probably not 100% effective but I haven't had a problem yet). Second it is much easier to ferment in a loosely lidded pail and stir often. Adding Campden is prolly not necessary but helps make sure the yeast you add has no competition. That said leave it and see what happens. When in doubt shake or stir often and raise the temp if possible.
 

Yooper

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I use campden for my fruit, and never heard of putting it in vinegar. Vinegar isn’t a sanitizer. Hopefully you didn’t use vinegar with a live culture, as then you’d be making vinegar.

I’ve been making wine for about 27 years or so. It’s pretty simple, and you can do it with just a couple of easy steps. One tip is to use a big plastic bucket instead of jamming bags of fruit through an opening as it’s going to be very hard to stir it now, and it’ll be very hard to get it out!
 
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May1gonow

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I use campden for my fruit, and never heard of putting it in vinegar. Vinegar isn’t a sanitizer. Hopefully you didn’t use vinegar with a live culture, as then you’d be making vinegar.

I’ve been making wine for about 27 years or so. It’s pretty simple, and you can do it with just a couple of easy steps. One tip is to use a big plastic bucket instead of jamming bags of fruit through an opening as it’s going to be very hard to stir it now, and it’ll be very hard to get it out!
Thanks! I usually soak my fruit in distilled white vinegar, it staves off mold and they keep longer in my fridge. I used the fruit the same day as purchase, but kind of panicked after I had already put it in and re-read about using fruit. I read some people don’t even wash their fruit, and so I at first thought I was being careful.
I think next time I will boil any fruit I put in.

Thank you so much!
 

Yooper

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Yes, but......when you sanitize your fruit for wine the idea is to kill wild yeast (probably not killed by vinegar) and bacteria, including acetobacter, the bacteria that make vinegar..........

There is a difference between washing/cleaning and sanitizing for fermentation. Please don’t use vinegar in winemaking, as the whole idea is to avoid turning your wine into vinegar unless you’re making wine vinegar.
 

amber-ale

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first, where did you get the fruit? if it was store bought frozen fruit, you can just let it defrost (still in the sealed original bag), refreeze, and defrost again. then pour into your disinfected (net bag lined) bucket (with a lid). stir twice a day with a disinfected large spoon.

It will be interesting to see what you get, since your rinsing with vinegar first may have introduced vinegar bacteria into your mix. it may not ferment at all, or the yeast bacteria may ferment (creating alcohol) and then the vinegar bacteria may take the alcohol produced and use it .. creating wine vinegar (either now or in the future). since you are already started, wait and find out what you get.

Don't rinse with vinegar!! ( in fact, use a new fermenter (bucket this time))
Don't boil your fruit!!

you will know if your wine is infected, and you will most likely not be willing to drink it after one taste.
if it is your first time wine making, why not try making a honey wine? it is easier, tasty and will help you get proficiant with your technique. try a modified JOAM mead ( just leave out the white part of the orange peel and any seeds, use an ale yeast ( NOT a wine yeast) and let it age for 3 months ( feel free to taste at the begining and each month to see how the flavors change)
 

LTBrewer

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Welcome to the hobby!
If it was distilled pasteurized, I doubt that any live vinegar cultures went into it. That being said, I would not be starting the wine making process by making pickles. Hope there is no vinegar flavor, smell in the final product. Hole in the top of the container? As Yooper mentioned, yes, please use a proper primary fermenter next time. You will access to flip and press the bag etc. Not to mention the fun you may have when that bag, when now full of CO2, rises to the top and plugs that hole. Please read that carefully, that may be your most pressing issue. To directly answer your question, after you've already added yeast, I would see what is going on with the fermentation. If you've got a strong vinegar smell, then you are making vinegar. Also good, but was not your goal. You should see some signs by tomorrow, a good layer of bubbles. I would add 1 crushed, dissolved tablet to the secondary vessel at first rack in a week-10 days; rack on top of the sulfite.
Get yourself a good winemaking book, the basics. The Joy of Home Wine Making by Terry Garey is good. Yooper also posted a good EcKraus reference. Be careful about boiling. In some instances that is the way to go, but at the very least that will change the flavors, and at the worst, introduce haze, pectin, or clearing problems that are hard or impossible to deal with. Typically frozen fruit, dosed with sulfite, and wait 12 hours. The books will introduce you to other methods and costs. From here you should be thinking about how to quietly rack to a proper fermenter under vapor lock. The transfer and control of oxygen is not super critical at this point since your must at this point will hopefully be full of active yeast and offgassing CO2. Proper cleaning, sanitization, and the logistics of moving things is about 70% of this hobby. I went back and read your post- yeah, don't boil pears.
 
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