High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Jonathan Sach » Fri, 11 Jan 2002 01:25:02



I'm not exactly a newbie, but this is my first attempt at making wine
according to my own judgment instead of following a routine laid down
by my wife. My first try at preparing must has left me with some
questions.

I prepared the must by pressing frozen, rethawed wild plums in a fruit
press. Following the instructions that came with the press, I pressed
the plums in a mesh bag. As a result, I got almost pure juice - no
pulp. In contrast, my wife always depitted the plums by hand, which
gave us a great deal of pulp in the must.

Question: is the pulp a good thing, a bad thing, or "it depends"? If I
might want pulp, is there any way I can get it out of the press?
(Pressing the plums bare does not look like an option. The drain holes
in the press are larger than many of the plum pits.)

The resulting juice has 19 ppt acid! I need advice on how to cut that
down to a reasonable level, say, 4 ppt.

For my first batch I diluted the juice 1:1.7 with water, which cut the
acid to 7 ppt, then added 1/2 oz of calcium carbonate to the gallon,
which was supposed to lower it another 3 ppt. I'm concerned that with
that amount of dilution, the wine may come out tasting weak.

What are my options? The book I'm using recommends crushed wheat to
give plum wine more body. I've also read that bananas make a good
non-acid addition to fruit wines. For the next batch I'd like to try
one or both of those ideas. How do I decide on proportions?

Finally, what about timing for adding sugar? My wife always started
the must with about 1 pound per gallon, then used specific gravity as
a guide to add more from time to time after the must was moved to a
carboy. All the recipes in the book say to add all of the sugar to the
must. Is one of these ways right, the other wrong? If not, what are
the merits of each?

Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Jonathan Sach » Sat, 12 Jan 2002 01:54:59


Here's one more puzzle: how does one crush wheat?

One of my recipe books recommends adding crushed wheat to the must to
give plum wine extra body. I want to try that after diluting the juice
to get the acid down.

My local supplier had no wheat in stock, so I bought wheatberries at a
market and tried to crush them myself, following the book's
instructions to crush them with a rolling pin between two sheets of
paper. I got nowhere. The wheatberries are much too hard to crack. I
even tried pounding them with a deadblow hammer (a mallet with a heavy
shot-filled head covered with ***) and that had no effect.

I've always assumed that wheatberries are the unmilled fruit of the
wheat plant. Did I buy the wrong thing? Or am I doing the wrong thing?

Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Greg Coo » Sat, 12 Jan 2002 03:43:38



Quote:

> Here's one more puzzle: how does one crush wheat?

> One of my recipe books recommends adding crushed wheat to the must to
> give plum wine extra body. I want to try that after diluting the juice
> to get the acid down.

> My local supplier had no wheat in stock, so I bought wheatberries at a
> market and tried to crush them myself, following the book's
> instructions to crush them with a rolling pin between two sheets of
> paper. I got nowhere. The wheatberries are much too hard to crack. I
> even tried pounding them with a deadblow hammer (a mallet with a heavy
> shot-filled head covered with ***) and that had no effect.

> I've always assumed that wheatberries are the unmilled fruit of the
> wheat plant. Did I buy the wrong thing? Or am I doing the wrong thing?

> Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

How about a few pulses in a food processor?

----Greg

http://www.FoundCollection.com/

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Jonathan Sach » Sat, 12 Jan 2002 04:13:14


Quote:



>> Here's one more puzzle: how does one crush wheat?

>How about a few pulses in a food processor?

I considered that, and I'll try it if I can't find a more effective
way, but I think it would be hard to crack most of the grains without
powdering many of them. It also would be *** the blade.

Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Andrew Werb » Sat, 12 Jan 2002 04:59:57



Quote:

> >On 1/10/02 10:54 AM, in article


Quote:

> >> Here's one more puzzle: how does one crush wheat?

> >How about a few pulses in a food processor?

> I considered that, and I'll try it if I can't find a more effective
> way, but I think it would be hard to crack most of the grains without
> powdering many of them. It also would be *** the blade.

> Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

[Try soaking the wheat berries in water overnight, then keeping them moist
for a few days, rinsing every so often, until they start to sprout. Then
toast them lightly in an oven, stirring occasionally. This will convert much
of the starch to more useful sugars, while making the berries a lot easier
to break up. A coffee grinder should work, or your food processor. Of
course, barley would be even better...]

Andrew Werby
http://www.FoundCollection.com/

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Bill Frazie » Sat, 12 Jan 2002 07:45:46


does one crush wheat?"

Don't know where you live but if there is a homebrew shop in the area you
can get your wheat there and have them crush the grain.  Some homebrewers
have their own mill and others always have grain crushed at the shop.  The
shop might crush the grain for a small fee.

"How about a few pulses in a food processor?"

Wheat has no hull so the idea of using a food processer is a good one.  If
you don't want the flour just shake it out with a kitchen sieve.

Having said the above I'm not sure I would want to add wheat to wine.  When
I use wheat in a beer recipe the wheat goes thru a mash process where starch
is converted to sugar by enzymes present in malted barley (main component of
most beer recipes).  If the wheat isn't mashed I would worry about a starch
haze that may be hard to get rid of.  In some beers that's fine but not in a
wine.  However, haven't tried it so can't say for sure.

Bill Frazier
Olathe, Kansas

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Ben Rott » Sat, 12 Jan 2002 07:58:03


Quote:
> Question: is the pulp a good thing, a bad thing, or "it depends"? If I
> might want pulp, is there any way I can get it out of the press?
> (Pressing the plums bare does not look like an option. The drain holes
> in the press are larger than many of the plum pits.)

Some winemakers believe pulp fermentations (or even pre-fermentation
macerations) give more flavour to the final wine than a juice
fermentation, and would therefore say it's a good thing. Additionally,
you're likely to extract more colour if you ferment on the pulp/skins.
On the other hand, pulp (fermentations )*can* be annoying in terms on
taking SG readings and the risk of oxidation.

Quote:
> For my first batch I diluted the juice 1:1.7 with water, which cut the
> acid to 7 ppt, then added 1/2 oz of calcium carbonate to the gallon,
> which was supposed to lower it another 3 ppt. I'm concerned that with
> that amount of dilution, the wine may come out tasting weak.

I would be too!
You could consider acid metabolisation by yeast (eg use Lalvin's
71B-1122 which can metabolise 20-40% of the malic acid in the must
during fermentation) or Lactobacillus plantarum (a pre-fermentation
biological deacidification of malic acid which can reduce malic acid
by 40-60%) or later malolactic fermentation.
Or some combination of blending, sweetening and chemical
deacidification (as you did with the last batch), and the above.

Quote:
> What are my options? The book I'm using recommends crushed wheat to
> give plum wine more body. I've also read that bananas make a good
> non-acid addition to fruit wines. For the next batch I'd like to try
> one or both of those ideas. How do I decide on proportions?

I would go for bananas (_not_ *very* ripe) - around 100 g/l (1
lb/Imp.gallon - which I'm assuming you're using judging by your acid
calcs.).

Quote:
> Finally, what about timing for adding sugar? My wife always started
> the must with about 1 pound per gallon, then used specific gravity as
> a guide to add more from time to time after the must was moved to a
> carboy. All the recipes in the book say to add all of the sugar to the
> must. Is one of these ways right, the other wrong? If not, what are
> the merits of each?

If the total potential *** you're aiming for is under around 14%
you should be able to dump all the sugar needed for the level into the
must and just have it ferment out (assuming the yeast can tolerate the
level you're aiming for, and most commercial wine yeasts should manage
<14%). Otherwise, you'd need to "feed" the yeast by adding small
amounts of sugar at a time around a low SG value (i.e. pushing the
yeast to it's ***ic tolerance - this is where the second option is
usually used and it's merit lies).

Ben
Improved Winemaking
http://www.FoundCollection.com/~BRotter/

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Jonathan Sach » Sat, 12 Jan 2002 12:15:48


Quote:

>Don't know where you live but if there is a homebrew shop in the area you
>can get your wheat there and have them crush the grain.

I tried that first, but they were out of stock. I bought the
wheatberries rather than wait and go back. Since I've already
defrosted and pressed the plums, I want to get fermentation under way
without a lot of delay so that the juice won't go bad.

Quote:
>Having said the above I'm not sure I would want to add wheat to wine.

Well, I'm following a recommendation in the book. That doesn't prove
it's right, but it's something reasonable to try. I could try the
sprout-and-toast process next time and compare results.

Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by CompostKin » Sat, 12 Jan 2002 14:34:14


Jon, what the hell you doing?? For one thing, "pulp is good". It will give
you a lot of colour as the *** level builds and extracts those red
pigments. Include the skins in your primary. Pulp is good too. Man, adding
calcium carb. right away is complicating things, brother. Gads, you are
making things a mess here. do not worry about the acid at this point (I
assume you are in the primary?). Crushed wheat for body? No way! Try raisins
or bananas. Yeah, you gotta add sugar to the must. Your best bet is
education. Get some books on winemaking, my friend and keep in touch with
this newsgroup. GBA.

Ed


Quote:
> I'm not exactly a newbie, but this is my first attempt at making wine
> according to my own judgment instead of following a routine laid down
> by my wife. My first try at preparing must has left me with some
> questions.

> I prepared the must by pressing frozen, rethawed wild plums in a fruit
> press. Following the instructions that came with the press, I pressed
> the plums in a mesh bag. As a result, I got almost pure juice - no
> pulp. In contrast, my wife always depitted the plums by hand, which
> gave us a great deal of pulp in the must.

> Question: is the pulp a good thing, a bad thing, or "it depends"? If I
> might want pulp, is there any way I can get it out of the press?
> (Pressing the plums bare does not look like an option. The drain holes
> in the press are larger than many of the plum pits.)

> The resulting juice has 19 ppt acid! I need advice on how to cut that
> down to a reasonable level, say, 4 ppt.

> For my first batch I diluted the juice 1:1.7 with water, which cut the
> acid to 7 ppt, then added 1/2 oz of calcium carbonate to the gallon,
> which was supposed to lower it another 3 ppt. I'm concerned that with
> that amount of dilution, the wine may come out tasting weak.

> What are my options? The book I'm using recommends crushed wheat to
> give plum wine more body. I've also read that bananas make a good
> non-acid addition to fruit wines. For the next batch I'd like to try
> one or both of those ideas. How do I decide on proportions?

> Finally, what about timing for adding sugar? My wife always started
> the must with about 1 pound per gallon, then used specific gravity as
> a guide to add more from time to time after the must was moved to a
> carboy. All the recipes in the book say to add all of the sugar to the
> must. Is one of these ways right, the other wrong? If not, what are
> the merits of each?

> Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Jonathan Sach » Sun, 13 Jan 2002 00:05:22


Quote:

>Jon, what the hell you doing?? For one thing, "pulp is good". It will give
>you a lot of colour as the *** level builds and extracts those red
>pigments. Include the skins in your primary. Pulp is good too. Man, adding
>calcium carb. right away is complicating things, brother. Gads, you are
>making things a mess here. do not worry about the acid at this point (I
>assume you are in the primary?). Crushed wheat for body? No way! Try raisins
>or bananas. Yeah, you gotta add sugar to the must. Your best bet is
>education. Get some books on winemaking, my friend and keep in touch with
>this newsgroup. GBA.

I appreciate your input, but your absolutism is somewhat offputting.
I've GOT books; all of them are either unclear or silent on these
points, or they disagree. As you've seen from the other posts in the
thread, Not all of the more experienced people here agree, either.

I want to keep an open mind about this and do a lot of
experimentation. I'm not going to accept any one person's input as
Truth.

As for pulp, you should understand that it has the disadvantage of
requiring close to an hour of very dull and somewhat unpleasant manual
labor to pit the plums. Remember that these are wild plums; that means
small; that means I need a lot of them. I intend to try returning to
the pulp technique to see what the differences are, but I rather hope
they're negative or minor!

Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Greg Coo » Sun, 13 Jan 2002 00:40:10



Quote:


>> Jon, what the hell you doing?? For one thing, "pulp is good". It will give
>> you a lot of colour as the *** level builds and extracts those red
>> pigments. Include the skins in your primary. Pulp is good too. Man, adding
>> calcium carb. right away is complicating things, brother. Gads, you are
>> making things a mess here. do not worry about the acid at this point (I
>> assume you are in the primary?). Crushed wheat for body? No way! Try raisins
>> or bananas. Yeah, you gotta add sugar to the must. Your best bet is
>> education. Get some books on winemaking, my friend and keep in touch with
>> this newsgroup. GBA.

> I appreciate your input, but your absolutism is somewhat offputting.
> I've GOT books; all of them are either unclear or silent on these
> points, or they disagree. As you've seen from the other posts in the
> thread, Not all of the more experienced people here agree, either.

> I want to keep an open mind about this and do a lot of
> experimentation. I'm not going to accept any one person's input as
> Truth.

> As for pulp, you should understand that it has the disadvantage of
> requiring close to an hour of very dull and somewhat unpleasant manual
> labor to pit the plums. Remember that these are wild plums; that means
> small; that means I need a lot of them. I intend to try returning to
> the pulp technique to see what the differences are, but I rather hope
> they're negative or minor!

> Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

I agree.  Pulp is not always the best, must different!!!  It depends on what
you are going after.  By the way, I would love to know how your wild plum
turns out with just juice fermentation.  I did wild plum this year on the
pulp.  It is very very astringent, as I sort of expected.  I wonder if it
would be less so if I didn't ferment with the pulp, particularly the skins.

----Greg

http://www.FoundCollection.com/

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Jonathan Sach » Sun, 13 Jan 2002 04:01:59


As a second thought, I'd like to hear your advice about adjusting the
acid balance.

This is one topic on which all of the books I've read are in
agreement: it is much better done early than late, and the beginning
of primary fermentation is, logically, the earliest possible time. My
own experience is consistent with that; all of my attempts to adjust
last year's production at the end of fermentation were either
ineffective or disasterous.

Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Jonathan Sach » Sun, 13 Jan 2002 23:48:51


Quote:

>By the way, I would love to know how your wild plum
>turns out with just juice fermentation.

It will be months before I can answer that question directly, but the
19 ppt acid level suggests that fermenting juice is not a sovereign
cure for "astringency"! I never measured the acid level in  pulp must,
but the resulting wine was quite high: around 9 ppt, as I recall. It
tasted nice, but it burned on the way down.

I think SOME type of dilution or blending is necessary to produce a
drinkable wine from wild plums.

(By the way, have you noticed that "wild plum" is an acrostic for
"liwd lump"?)

Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Greg Coo » Mon, 14 Jan 2002 01:40:47



Quote:


>> By the way, I would love to know how your wild plum
>> turns out with just juice fermentation.

> It will be months before I can answer that question directly, but the
> 19 ppt acid level suggests that fermenting juice is not a sovereign
> cure for "astringency"! I never measured the acid level in  pulp must,
> but the resulting wine was quite high: around 9 ppt, as I recall. It
> tasted nice, but it burned on the way down.

> I think SOME type of dilution or blending is necessary to produce a
> drinkable wine from wild plums.

> (By the way, have you noticed that "wild plum" is an acrostic for
> "liwd lump"?)

> Send email to jsachs177 at earthlink dot net.

Maybe I'm missing something.  By astringent, I mean that mouthpuckering
TANNIC bite.  I don't think this is related to acid, but I could be wrong.
I assumed it was high in tannin and that probably came from the skins.
Without the skins, it should be less? ? ? ?

Please enlighten me!

----Greg

http://www.ndsu.nodak.edu/instruct/grcook/wine/

 
 
 

High acid fruit must; pulp; sugar; some questions

Post by Ben Rott » Mon, 14 Jan 2002 03:38:36


Quote:

>As for pulp, you should understand that it has the disadvantage of

requiring close to an hour of very dull and >somewhat unpleasant
manual labor to pit the plums. Remember that these are wild plums;
that means small; that >means I need a lot of them. I intend to try
returning to the pulp technique to see what the differences are, but I

Quote:
>rather hope they're negative or minor!

In this particular case, with (1) the pulp fermentation involving a
lot of effort and (2) wild plums more likely having higher astringency
and acidity in the skins, I personally wouldnt bother with a
pulp fermentation. But, of course, it all really depends on the style
of wine youre making.
Obviously it depends on the fruit, but as a general statement
concerning flavour (and (*not considering* colour or structure) I
personally find pulp fermentations to make very little difference.
Obviously, however, they will make differences in colour, astringency
and tannic extraction, and some small changes in acidity and pH.

Quote:
>Not all of the more experienced people here agree, either. I want to

keep an open mind about this and do a lot of >experimentation. I'm not
going to accept any one person's input as Truth.

I whole-heartedly agree with the position you take! Whilst there are
many unarguable scientific facts in winemaking theres also a
lot of personal choice. Its great to experiment and work out
what suits you (and your fruit, and your set-up) best, thats an
artform.

Quote:
>As a second thought, I'd like to hear your advice about adjusting the

acid balance. This is one topic on which all >of the books I've read
are in agreement: it is much better done early than late, and the
beginning of primary >fermentation is, logically, the earliest
possible time.
Quote:
>My own experience is consistent with that; all of my attempts to

adjust last year's production at the end of >fermentation were either
ineffective or disastrous.

Thats true. When its chemical de/acidification, setting
the acid profile early on ensures that the acidity `marries
structurally with the wine as a whole. Acid added post-fermentation
often appears harder.
For the actual deacidification, Id reiterate the means I
suggested before. Your case is particularly hard. I assume you quoted
total TA as sulphuric because youre aiming for 4 ppt (= 6.1 ppt
as tartaric). An example on this case using what Ive mentioned
might go:
19 ppt (as sulph. = 29 ppt as tartaric). Use 2 g/l CaCO3 (above this
level can cause chalky flavours) to reduce acid to 10 g/l sulph. (15.4
g/l as tartaric), then ferment with Lalvin's 71B-1122 yeast reducing
acidity by 40% to 6 (9.2 tart.), then conduct a malolactic
fermentation finally reducing acidity to 4 g/l (6.1 as tart.).
Its complicated so its no wonder that, at high levels
such as this, many people simply dilute their fruit juice a lot, at
the expense (however) of losing aroma, flavour and colour.

Quote:

>I agree. Pulp is not always the best, must different!!! It depends on

what you are going after. By the way, I would >love to know how your
wild plum turns out with just juice fermentation. I did wild plum this
year on the pulp. It >is very very astringent, as I sort of expected.
I wonder if it would be less so if I didn't ferment with the pulp,

Quote:
>particularly the skins.

I very much suspect so.

Ben