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Pear Wine

PostPosted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 9:46 pm
by jimmiec
I got 30 lbs of free pears. They were very ripe today so I copped them up. It pretty much made 5 gallons of juice and such, so I added 5 crushed campden tablets and mixed it with my new degasser. Are the campden tablets good enough for sanitizing the fruit (must) or am I about to make a vinegar?

I plan on using 8 lbs in the secondary of a mead and was going to use the rest for maybe a pear wine. What is a good recipe? I've been looking around have not found one from a great source. I was thinking something like:

22 lbs Pears
2.5 lbs Raisins
8.75 lbs Sugar (OG 1.085)
7.50 tsp Acid Blend
water to make 5 gallons
V1116 yeast

Do I need pectin enzyme if I don't heat the fruit? I guess at some point I need to add some clarify.

PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 1:35 pm
by yeastmeister
First off, add the pectic enzyme. Second, campden tablets are just fine for sanitizing the fruit at that dosing rate. Although for overripe fruit, they often recommend a double dose. I guess you need to determine what overripe means in relation to your fruit. Either way, wait 24 hours before you pitch your yeast, or it will kill the yeast as well.

You may want to make some measurements of the acid level of the fruit before you add generic amounts of acid blend.

Its really easy to do. The test kits are available locally. If your getting into wine, I'd suggest you purchase one, they are under $10.

For pear wine, I'd keep the acid somewhere in the 0.55% to 0.65% range.
From discussions I have had with the wine makers, you may want to keep the og to around 1.080. But thats going to depend on the sugar level of your fruit. If you have that much juice, you should be able to measure it with a hydrometer, or just a couple of drops on a refractometer.

Let me know if that helps. I'm a wine maker as well.

PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 5:34 pm
by jimmiec
OK. Your comments do help. I did buy the acid test along with the acid blend and reading the instructions now. It makes sense that you can not just use a generic amount since all fruit are different.

I got a refractometer and will be using to get me the OG and I'll lower it to 1.080 instead of 1.085. I'll go with the experienced number.

I got the pectin enzymes so I'll go ahead and put that it. I got everything sanitizing and it almost been 24 hours since adding the campdin tablets. I guess I'll try to make my first wine.

PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:25 pm
by redtail28
Good luck with it.

PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 7:54 pm
by jimmiec
Is the acid Level for fermentation or taste? I got it to .50 % and my wife will not let me use the degasser any more tonight. She claims it wakes up the baby. I can finish getting to .60% in the morning or at lunch, would that be OK?

PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 5:14 am
by yeastmeister
For a little of both. But thats probably ok. You can finish adjusting it when fermentation is complete.

PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 7:50 am
by aleguy
OK. Just to be clear. I think 1.080 is too low for anything that you will call a wine.1.10 and up are usually the starting points as far as I can determine from the literature. You can always feed the must more sugar in staggered additions. Lalvin 71b 1122 is supposed to be able to handle up to 20% alcohol if handled in that way (Compleat Meadmaker.)
Also I was wondering why a pear wine, when Perry seems so much more appropriate. Your call, but I would have just gone with a simple Perry. (Pear cider.)
Anyway, enjoy. I like making other beverages besides beer myself, it's just that they take up valuable fermentation space for so damn long! Maybe when I get myself about 20 carboys and a three-vessel Chillenstein I can get seriopus about meads, ciders, perrys and country wines.

PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 8:56 am
by yeastmeister
The 1.080 figure comes from Gib in the wine club. He is the most award winning wine member we have in Lafayette. The past several fruit wines I have brought to the club started at 1.085. All members separately agreed that there was too much alcohol for fruit wines. They don't like to taste the alcohol. Gib says that every wine he wins awards with is 1.080.

I guess it depends on who you are making it for. If its for wine drinkers, keep it at 1.080, if your making it for beer people then put it up a little (I guess thats why mead is part of the beer judging realm instead of the wine judging realm).

But your right, technically, its a perry, but i've seen it referred to as both a wine and a perry before.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 12:30 pm
by jimmiec
I was curious how I was going to strain the fermented liquid from all the fruit pulp but I see now that it is separating very nicely with some of the pulp at the bottom and a lot floating at the top. However, the pulp at the top dries out some. Some places on the internet says to leave it alone and some say to sanitize a spoon and stir the top with being careful not to disturb the liquid below. Do you guys mess with stirring the top?

Sorry to ask so many questions and thanks for the help. Is the LWMG active?

I going to try to do several or more wines a year. The next wine I'm going to try a kit or extract. However, I do want to make a Peach Ginger Mead next. Also, collecting some berries to make a Berry Mead.

PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 8:12 pm
by jimmiec
I decided to be a puncher. I have been punching the pulp and stirring it at least once a day.

PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 5:20 am
by yeastmeister
Oops, sorry for the slow reply. Yep, I'm a puncher as well. Don't worry, the yeast will actually do a good job of breaking the fruit up. Don't worry if the first racking has lots of stuff in it. Fruit wines typically take several rackings to clear.

PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 8:52 am
by jimmiec
No problem. It is good to hear that you are punching too. It is amazing how much the pulp has broken down already. I'm not sure if that is from pushing the top back down into the liquid or what but maybe so.

As far as racking, I was going to rack from the primary it to a 5-gallon glass carboy this weekend. I planned on adding Campden tablets (1 tablet per gallon) at the 2nd, 4th, and 6th racking and just before bottling. I guess the number of racking depends on the clarity of the wine. I plan on stabilizing the wine on the last racking. Instead of topping up after each racking, I planned on just hitting the carboy with co2. Unless I get a little extra from the first racking, which I will try not to drink.

An earlier batch of mead, I wish I would have saved some of the extra mead from the primary. I had transferred the primary mead onto 8 lbs of pears and of coarse not all of the mead would fit into the 6-gallon carboy, which I filled almost to the top. I took a refractometer reading (0.998) of the extra mead and stuck it in the refrigerator to drop the yeast. Unfortunately, I finished drinking it all the other night, which tasted pretty good. Now I know, I need to keep it for topping off each racking. The pear pulp in the carboy with the mead has not broken down as much as the pulp in the primary of pear wine.

PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:43 am
by yeastmeister
Don't add any more tablets till the yeast is done. It will kill the yeast.

PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:29 pm
by aleguy
I wouldn't add any more sulfite at all! Maybe just some Potassium ??? (can't remember the name right now, it prevents fermentation) at bottling time. Also, CO2 should work fine to prvent oxidation. No need to top off your carboys. just flush them with CO2 before you put the stopper and airlock on.
If you want to get really careful, you can purge your carboy with CO2 before you rack into it as well. Then there really wouldn't be any need to flash it afterward.