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Pluot wine

26 Sep

Ever heard of a pluot? Neither had I until I saw a plum-like fruit marketed towards children as “Dino Eggs” due to their size and their speckled, reptile-egg like colouring.  When I researched it I discovered it was a hybrid developed in the 1980s from plums and apricots (around 80% plum and 20% apricot) and that there are several varieties of pluots available. The local store was selling a variety with a name I loved, “Flavour Grenade”.  Since it is closest to plum, I used a plum recipe:

5lbs pluots

Sugar to SG 1.100 (Around 3C-ish)

1 1/2 tsp acid blend

1 tsp pectic enzyme

1/4 tsp yeast energizer

1/8 tsp grape tannin

1 Campden tablet, crushed

Lalvin 71B-1112 yeast (You could use Lalvin K1-V1116 if you wanted)

water to 4 l

Bentonite (around 2 tbsp)

I juiced the pluots with the Champion juicer. If you don’t have the best home juicer available, don’t despair: you can merely chop the fruit (removing the pits) and place them in the primary. Pour 1 kettle of boiling water over them. Add sugar, stir until dissolved and let sit until cool.

Once the pluots were juiced, I added the sugar and everything else but the yeast. Let stand 24 hrs to let the Campden tablet do its magic. Pitch yeast when the temperature is within range.

Cover, stir, and ferment to desired SG (in this case 0.990)

Racked into carboy. Bentonite added.

Nov. 3/11. Racked and clearing wonderfully.

Watermelon Wine

6 Sep

I made this wine 2 years ago and was amazed by how much I liked it! Like watermelon, it is best served at room temperature when it is the most flavourful. Many people found this wine to be too weird, so there will be lots for me!

45 lbs watermelon (wait until the price comes down towards mid-end of August. I got 3 x 15lb melons.)

15C sugar

8 tsp acid blend

5 tsp yeast energizer

1/4-1/2 tsp tannin (I usually just eyeball it)

1 Campden tablet, crushed

water

ICV-D-47 yeast

I juiced the watermelon in a juicer, but if you don’t have a juicer you can use a fruit press, blender, or even crush it in the primary.  I got about 11-12 litres of juice from all 3 melons.

I then added some bentonite (to help it clear quickly; watermelon is a bit of a delicate wine in my experience*) and the rest of the ingredients.  I pitched the yeast on August 29th, 2011.

This is the pulp that remained from each watermelon! About the size of an uncooked hamburger patty (and a similar colour too.)

6 Sept. 2011 – Racked wine into carboy. Added:

1  tsp sulfites

2 tsp potassium sorbate

1 and 1/2 tbsp kieselsol

5 tbsp chitosan

Degassed wine! It’s very important to give it a good stirring to release some of the CO2 that remains in the wine from the fermentation process. Should be mostly clear in 2 weeks or so.

*I had to pour out last year’s batch because I didn’t pay enough attention to it and it became infused with sulfur dioxide gas and would not under any circumstance clear. Gavin at the wine making shop up the street said it was because I didn’t pay enough attention to it.