Joel’s Spiked Grape Juice #001

This is my experimental grape juice wine recipe. It’s a work in progress that I’ve just started and it’s my first home made wine. I based it on instructions I received at my brewery shop but modified slightly for ingredients that are available at my local grocery store.

Reference Number 001

Ingredients

  • 128oz Welch’s 100% Grape Juice
  • 1 1/4 Cup Pure Cane Sugar
  • 1 tsp Pectic Enzyme
  • 1 Campden Tablet, Crushed
  • 1 tsp Yeast Energizer (Nutrient Booster)
  • 1 pkg Red Wine Yeast

Primary (5-6 Days)

  • Clean then sterilize bucket, lid, stopper, gravity tester, spoon and measuring equipment
  • Combine all ingredients EXCEPT yeast into bucket, cover w/ airlock
  • After 24-hours, sprinkle yeast on top and re-cover
  • Check S.G. daily until it reaches 1.030, then it’s ready for secondary

Secondary (About 3 Weeks)

  • Siphon (rack) into secondary bottle, cover and attach airlock
  • Ready to clear when ferment is complete (S.G. is below 1.000)

Clear (About 2 Months)

  • Siphon off into clean secondary, cover and re-attach airlock

Bottling

  • Add 1 tsp Stabilizer and 3/4 to 1 cup of dissolved sugar
  • Bottle

Notes

Aug 29th, 2018

  • Put in primary
  • I did not clean correctly. Used commercial OxyClean spray. Bottle doesn’t list ingredients
  • I sanitized with PBW. It’s a cleaner, not a sanitizer. Rinsed after just 15 seconds or so
  • Initial Specific Gravity is 1.090 (12%) at 70 degrees (not adjusted for temperature)
  • I probably want a higher initial gravity. Assuming that it’s around 4% at completion I’m expecting only around 8% ABV
  • I can free my primary bucket after about a week. I’ll want more secondaries and maybe one more primary

Aug 30th, 2018 (Day 1)

  • Opened the primary bucket and pitched the yeast on top
  • Rechecked S.G. while I had it open; it remains unchanged
  • Yeast is Red Star, Premier Classique, Active Dry Yeast

Aug 31st, 2018 (Day 2)

  • Fermentation has started. There are a few bubbles on top. It doesn’t seem very aggressive
  • Removed the water and cap from the airlock to allow in a little more oxygen
  • There is a slight alcohol smell
  • I did not check the S.G.

Sep 1st, 2018 (Day 3)

  • Setup a table and a rack
  • S.G. 1.022 (7%)
  • Wine is 78 degrees F
  • It’s already below 1.030 and ready for secondary. I’ll leave it for another day at least
  • Tastes a bit like champagne at this point
  • Color is quite cloudy and it’s visibly bubbly

Sep 3rd, 2018 (Day 5)

  • Ignored it yesterday
  • Fermentation seems to have slowed
  • I removed the airlock and placed cotton ball on top
  • I syphoned to secondary and re-attached the clean airlock
  • S.G. is now 1.000
  • There was about 1/4″ of lees in the bottom of the primary
  • Topped up the secondary with Crystal Geyser Alpine Spring Water
  • Wine is clean but cloudy

Oct 8th, 2018 (Week 5)

  • Siphoned to a clean jug
  • Topped up with more spring water
  • Starting to clear
  • Smells like wine

Thoughts

  • I’m unable to check S.G. starting with 128oz juice in a 2 gal bucket. The hydrometer bottoms out
  • I need a wine thief for quick S.G. tests (picked up a baster instead)
  • I’d like to start a second wine. Two buckets would be nice
  • Picked up a beverage server as a new primary; I’ll use it for the next one
  • I hate wasting the amount of wine my hydrometer requires (about 2.5oz or so per test)
  • Having a glass primary seems like it would be an advantage for inspection
  • I put the jug into a cardboard box to better block the light
  • Toping with spring water dilutes it at each racking but I have nothing else

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