Cranberry/Pomegranate Wine: batch 2 on 2012-10-26
Goal: make 1 gallon (four 750ml bottles) of cranberry-pomegranate wine using store-bought juice. I purchased three half-gallon bottles of cranberry-pomegranate 100% juice.
The juice contains unknown amount of fumaric acid (flavor enhancer. tartaric acid substitute).
The room used to keep the primary fermenter needs to have stable air temperature.
Make sure there are several inches of ullage (air space) in the primary fermenter so yeast has room to bubble.
Cover fermenter with cheese cloth or thin lint-free towel. Make sure it is secured. This keeps out fruit flies and other critters.
I may add 1 to 4 tsp grape tannin since the juice did not use the skins during their making.
Proposed timeline which is updated to actual timeline.
Day 1 (2012/10/25) load primary fermenter with juice, additives. Measure acid, make adjustment. Create yeast starter.
Day 2 – A.M. stir in pectin enzyme. P.M. check specific gravity. Adjust, if necessary. Pitch yeast to start fermentation.
Day 3 - measure S.G., must temperature
Day 4 - measure S.G., must temperature
Day 5 (2012/10/29) fermentation should be winding down. S.G. should be around 1.030 (acutal was 1.020), showing the yeast has consumed a good portion of the sugar. Racked into container with airlock (anaerobic fermentation starts). Move to cooler (60 deg) place. This slows down fermentation.
Day 8 - fermentation should be finished with S.G. below 1.000.
Day 45 (2012/12/08) - racked into container with airlock. S.G. was 0.990.
Day 139 (2013/03/12) – rack into container with airlock
Day 75 – fining, if necessary
Day 85 – stabilize wine
Day 86 – sweeten wine, if necessary
Day 96 – rack into bottles
Day 1 - fermentation prep - Oct 25, 2012
Made yeast starter (sterilized) using 1 g Montrachet yeast, 1/4 tsp white cane sugar, 1/4 cup water. Let sit overnight.
Put 1 1/4 gallons of cranberry-pomegranate juice (juice is pasteurized, according to ocean spray website) in primary fermenter (1 1/2 gallon stainless steel pot). Added 1 crushed Campden tablet and stirred well.
S.G. of juice was 1.056 at 71 deg. Temperature-adjusted S.G. = 1.057
Added 15 oz sugar which raised S.G. to 1.085. I measured just after mixing in sugar/juice syrup. I should have waited an hour for entire must to absorb the syrup.
Stirred in 1 tsp yeast nutrient, 1/2 tsp pectin enzyme. Covered with paper towel and let sit overnight.
Day 2 - start primary fermentation
(morning) Pitched yeast starter into must. Stirred well with sterilized stainless steel spoon. Ambient temperature was 71 degrees (varies between 66 (night) and 73 degrees (day)). Activity started in a few hours.
Stir must daily with sanitized stirring device (I use a long, stainless steel spoon) during primary fermentation: morning, noon, night. This distributes the yeast, keeps them active, and delivers more oxygen.
Day 3 - fermentation
(afternoon, 73 deg) Yeast activity picked up substantially.
(night: 71 deg) A lot of yeast activity. Top of must covered with bubbles.
Next time I'll use a deeper fermenter and cover it with a clean lint-free cloth.
Day 4 - fermentation - Oct 28, 2012
Lots of bubbles and yeasty smell. Tomorrow I will measure S.G. If it is around 1.030, the must will get racked into a secondary fermenter with an airlock.
Day 5 - rack into secondary
The S.G. was 1.020. The must is still bubbly. I racked the must into a secondary fermenter with an airlock. The lees were plastered to the bottom of the fermenter. The must is cloudy.
I moved the secondary fermenter to the basement where the ambient temperature is 62 degrees. This will slow down fermentation. Will rack in 30 days.
Day 45 - racking - Dec 8, 2012
It has been 40 days since the last racking. I carefully racked the wine into another container and quickly attached the airlock. The S.G. was 0.990 and ambient temperature 60 deg. Wine was not cloudy and no off-tastes, though very dry (as indicated by the S.G.). There was a solid, firm layer of lees.
Naturally, I sampled the wine. It was tart, as expected given the S.G. of 0.990. Sugar will have to be added after stabilizing.
We are in the bulk-aging process. The next step is another racking in a month or so.
The potential alcohol: SG 1.085 - SG 0.990 or 11.5% - 0% = 11.5% alcohol
racking - Mar 12, 2013
Racked wine into another container. S.G. was 0.992, ambient temperature 64 deg. Wine was clear with no off-tastes. Practically no lees at all.
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