How not to ...

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MKG
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How not to ...

Post: #281582 MKG
Thu Sep 04, 2014 12:23 pm

I feel a bit of a plonker.

You may remember the cans of grape juice I got at next to nothing? Well, I got some more - lots more! And if you also remember, they made a reasonable white wine. OH likes sweet white wine (I never managed to complete her education) so I thought, as you do, well OK - sweet white wine it is. And as the first recipe was so simple and as grape juice is so easy to deal with, I convinced myself I didn't need any notes. What could be simpler?

The grape juice already had enough sugar content for a 8 to 8.5% wine. On to the added sugar calculations, then, and I'm tossing up in my mind whether or not to use some demerara in the mix. Well, yes I am, so it's going to feel a bit heavier than normal and have a strong enough flavour to carry a bit more alcohol - I'll aim for 15% ABV, I think, so I need a total sugar content of about 3lbs. Simples!!

It's easier to see how the fermentation is going without the demerara, so I'm going to use that as a feeder, adding a bit of demerara solution at a time to enable the yeast to get used to more alcohol. That's the way to do it. So, 3 lbs of sugar needed, a pound of which will be demerara (see where this is going?), do the maths (easy) and then make up a syrup of 2 lbs of granulated sugar, stick it in with the grape juice and leave it alone for a while. It went off like a rocket again. There was so much gas coming off that I wouldn't have had a chance of getting a hydrometer reading without taking off a sample and forcibly stopping the effervescence. So I estimated when to start adding the demerara. It was still going well (not quite so active, but healthy) when I added the last four ounces. Now all I was doing was waiting for the fermentation to stop. Which it did, unfortunately leaving behind a liquid with a light brown haze which would not clear.

The penny still hadn't dropped. It wasn't until I heated a sample of the wine - just on the off-chance, you know? - that the haze disappeared. Then it dawned on me - the haze was demerara sugar held in suspension and it was still there because I'd completely forgotten the 8%'s worth of sugar already in the juice. So now I had a gallon of super-sweet wine which is, of necessity, at the top of the fermentation range of the yeast I used (which was stuff you now get at Wilkinson's which will do 18% with no problem and more if you treat it nicely.

And OH doesn't like it.
The secret of life is to aim below the head (With thanks to MMM)

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Green Aura
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Re: How not to ...

Post: #281583 Green Aura
Thu Sep 04, 2014 12:34 pm

Can't you water it down and start again.
Maggie

Never doubt that you can change history. You already have. Marge Piercy

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. Anais Nin

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MKG
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Re: How not to ...

Post: #281586 MKG
Thu Sep 04, 2014 12:41 pm

Oh, it's not a chuck-out, GA. I can rescue something.

Doesn't stop me feeling stupid, though :lol:
The secret of life is to aim below the head (With thanks to MMM)

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Odsox
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Re: How not to ...

Post: #281589 Odsox
Thu Sep 04, 2014 1:03 pm

Hmmm, and I'm taking instructions from this person. :iconbiggrin:

First part of the apple wine complete, it's all sulking, sorry soaking in the larder.
Tony

Disclaimer: I almost certainly haven't a clue what I'm talking about.

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Brewtrog
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Re: How not to ...

Post: #281594 Brewtrog
Thu Sep 04, 2014 3:14 pm

We've all done it, I made a 9% beer once because I forgot that malt extract was basically sugar, so 2 tins of extract plus the usual amount of sugar for 1 tin. To be fair it was a happy accident in that case (very nice beer, a definite sipping beer though). Just blend it with something dry.


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