Wine Yeast for Beer?

Homebrew, cordials, cheese, dehydrating, smoking and soap making. An area for all problems to be asked, tips to be given and procedures shared.
Stoney
margo - newbie
margo - newbie
Posts: 24
Joined: Fri May 24, 2013 9:22 pm
latitude: 0
longitude: 0
Location: Hull, East Yorkshire

Wine Yeast for Beer?

Post: #274655 Stoney
Thu Jun 06, 2013 12:50 pm

I have recently started a batch of apple wine from supermarket juice and a separate batch with mixed fruit tea bags. However even though these are still bubbling away I found a couple of recipes I would like to try next. One being nettle and ginger beer and the other been dandelion mead. Now my question is can I use the 'general purpose' wine yeast and nutrient I recently bought? As the nettle beer recipe asks for ale yeast and the mead for champagne yeast. One of the reasons I would like to try these recipes is they claim to be ready to drink in 7-14 days. Is it the conversion of the sugar that takes the time when brewing as I don't understand how it can be ready in 7-14 days, is this because i am adding less sugar then to the wine I currently have on the go.

And one last thing! Why do these two recipes ask or cream of tartar? what is its function in the brewing process.

Thanks in advance for any help on this.

User avatar
MKG
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5010
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 5:15 pm
Location: North Notts.

Re: Wine Yeast for Beer?

Post: #274657 MKG
Thu Jun 06, 2013 2:08 pm

Oh - not many questions, then :iconbiggrin:

OK - nettle and ginger beer. Dunc may go ballistic when I say this, but that really is not going to need a dedicated fine beer maker's yeast, complete with its subtle flavouring habits. Nettle and ginger ale, although delicious in its own right, will be far from subtle. Yes, you can use wine yeast. Actually, you can use bakers' yeast too - you're not going to be anywhere near the alcohol levels which would slow that down.

Mead is different. Honey is a natural bactericide. It is not very friendly to any micro-organism, and that includes yeast. So, if you want to go in the mead direction, you need a strong yeast with high tolerance to just about everything. Hence the recipe calling for champagne yeast, which fits that bill. Having said that, modern general-purpose yeasts are pretty strong in their own right, so it's well worth having a go with those first - you can always nip out and buy a sachet of the "good" stuff if it doesn't start.

Cream of tartar - forget it. Tartaric acid may make a difference to a wine if you plan to mature it for years. Cream of tartar won't do that. It's a conceit, the value of which has never been shown one way or the other. Simply ignore it. (For interest's sake, cream of tartar is actually a PRODUCT of the brewing process, rather than a fermentation enhancer.

Mike
The secret of life is to aim below the head (With thanks to MMM)

User avatar
gregorach
A selfsufficientish Regular
A selfsufficientish Regular
Posts: 885
Joined: Thu Sep 30, 2010 1:53 pm
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland

Re: Wine Yeast for Beer?

Post: #274658 gregorach
Thu Jun 06, 2013 2:26 pm

MKG wrote:OK - nettle and ginger beer. Dunc may go ballistic when I say this, but that really is not going to need a dedicated fine beer maker's yeast, complete with its subtle flavouring habits.


Not at all Mike - it's not really beer, so I couldn't care less. I have no opinion on what people should use to ferment a weed-flavoured sugar solution. :iconbiggrin:
Cheers

Dunc

Stoney
margo - newbie
margo - newbie
Posts: 24
Joined: Fri May 24, 2013 9:22 pm
latitude: 0
longitude: 0
Location: Hull, East Yorkshire

Re: Wine Yeast for Beer?

Post: #274669 Stoney
Thu Jun 06, 2013 9:20 pm

Thanks for the help Mike. A few more questions if you don't mind? This is my new hobby after all and I have no experience, yet anyway!

What's the difference between nettle wine and nettle beer?

What strength nettle beer/mead would I be looking at after a week? As anything 5-7% would be ideal. The mead recipe I have found says the finished drink will be fizzy, will this be because its not finished fermenting ?

Thanks again in advance for any help as I know I have much to learn!

User avatar
MKG
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5010
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 5:15 pm
Location: North Notts.

Re: Wine Yeast for Beer?

Post: #274674 MKG
Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:09 am

No Probs, Stoney ...

As we're talking about nettle beer rather then the subtle and arcane mysteries of Dunc's beer laboratory, the difference is that nettle beer is fizzy and relatively weak in alcohol, whereas wine is still and stronger. One is designed to be a refreshing quaff and the other is more of a petite mouthful. (Who am I kidding?)

Strength after a week depends upon a lot of things - how healthy your yeast is, how soon the fermentation got going, the ambient temperature, whether or not there's an X in the month etc. If you get a quick development of the fermentation, then 5% in a week is achievable. 7% may be asking a little too much, though - and, of course, it all depends upon how much sugar you have in the recipe.

And yes - if your mead is fizzy, it is because the fermentation is still going on (or you bottled it before the fermentation was finished).

I may be teaching my granny to suck eggs, but as you're talking about fizzy drinks, please make absolutely sure that the bottles you're using will withstand the pressure which can build up. Failure to do that leads to interesting sounds in the night from your kitchen - and it can easily be dangerous. Swing-top beer bottles are good, and so are PET bottles.

Mike
The secret of life is to aim below the head (With thanks to MMM)

Stoney
margo - newbie
margo - newbie
Posts: 24
Joined: Fri May 24, 2013 9:22 pm
latitude: 0
longitude: 0
Location: Hull, East Yorkshire

Re: Wine Yeast for Beer?

Post: #274677 Stoney
Fri Jun 07, 2013 11:22 am

Thanks Mike!

I had a look last night and the yeast I bought is labelled as wine makers and brewers yeast so I will be using it in everything i brew until its gone and my brews become more sophisticated!

I was under the impression that fermentation was left until it was finished and if you wanted a finished fizzy drink you primed it with sugar when bottling.

If I wanted a stronger nettle beer I would just add a little more sugar and leave it a little longer to ferment before bottling?

I would like to brew some 'proper beer' eventually its just the price of empty bottles holding me back. I am going to go on a mission to find some empty 500ml/pint crown top bottles at the recycling bins, ask in pubs etc. But for the moment I am going to stick to some easy recipes I can do on a smaller scale in my plastic demijohns and bottle into empty plastic pop bottles.
As for them exploding I will be keeping them in the fridge we have in the shed and besides I don't think they will be in the bottle too long!

Cheers

Stoney

Stoney
margo - newbie
margo - newbie
Posts: 24
Joined: Fri May 24, 2013 9:22 pm
latitude: 0
longitude: 0
Location: Hull, East Yorkshire

Re: Wine Yeast for Beer?

Post: #274776 Stoney
Fri Jun 14, 2013 11:12 am

So I made malted nettle beer on Monday night, it went mad and frothed everywhere for a couple of days and then slowed right down to bubbling a few minutes apart. I cleaned the bottle and the airlock. I also added a tablespoon of lemon juice and half a teaspoon of both yeast and nutrient to try and kick start it but its done nothing. There is quite a large amount of sediment in the bottom of the DJ , so can anyone tell me what's happening or shall I tip it down the drain and start again?

User avatar
MKG
Site Admin
Site Admin
Posts: 5010
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 5:15 pm
Location: North Notts.

Re: Wine Yeast for Beer?

Post: #274818 MKG
Mon Jun 17, 2013 3:13 pm

NOOOOooooooooo!!!!

Taste it - always the first thing to do unless multi-coloured moulds are plainly visible. It may just be finished (by now, anyway). Loads of things to check ... Did you use the right amount of sugar? ... Are you absolutely sure that the airlock is actually airtight? ...etc.

The deposit is good - that's normal. But you did say that it was still bubbling slowly, which means that a fermentation is still going on. Patience!

But definitely taste it before making any decisions. If it tastes like malted nettle beer should taste like and it's not too sweet, then you probably have malted nettle beer.

Mike
The secret of life is to aim below the head (With thanks to MMM)


Return to “Home Brew and other Country Skills”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests