Wine yeasts

ONE of the big strides which has been made in winemaking is that there are now available to the amateur many excellent varieties of special wine yeasts, in either culture or tablet form. Their value is unquestioned, for there are innumerable varieties of yeasts, all with different characteristics, and just as some are more suitable for baking or beerbrewing, so others are better for the production of quality wine. A good wine yeast has a high alcohol tolerance (i.e., it will allow the wine to...

The vinegar fly

THE worst possible mishap which can befall a winemaker is to have his wine at one stage or another turn to vinegar (from the French vinaigre sour wine), which it can quite easily do if vinegar bacteria are allowed access to it. These bacteria are, like yeasts, present everywhere about us, but are sometimes introduced to the wine by that obnoxious carrier, the vinegar fly. This tiny fly, which appears as if by magic around any fermenting liquor or fruit, is the wine-maker's biggest enemy it must...

Clearing

NORMALLY a well-made wine will clear of its own accord, given time (which can be as much as a year in some cases) but when it does not, it may be necessary to resort to fining or filtering. The best advice that we can give, however, is always give your wine a chance to clear naturally. Avoid fining, which may upset the chemical balance of the wine, and filter only as a last resort, for filtering does take something out of a wine besides the murkiness. Usually all that is necessary is to move...

Winemaking

A complete month-by-month guide to winemaking (including the production of cider, perry and mead) and beer brewing at home, with over 130 tried and tested recipes The Amateur Winemaker, North Croye, The Avenue, Andover, Hants THIS little book really started as a collection of recipes, reliable recipes which had appeared in the monthly magazine, The Amateur Winemaker. First published in January 1960, it was an instant and phenomenal success, for a quarter of a million copies have been sold, and...

The fermentation trap

Fermentation Trap

IT is then that one needs to employ a fermentation trap. This is a simple device, being in effect an air-lock, and we illustrate what is undoubtedly the most popular and commonly used pattern, a glass U-tube with two bulbs. This is inserted in the bung or cork of the fermenting vessel so as to be an airtight fit (this is important, or the lock will not work), and a good tip is to use rubber bungs rather than corks to ensure that there is no leakage. It is advisable to lightly grease the glass...

Making up a starter bottle

IF you do purchase a wine yeast, of whatever sort, it will usually be supplied in only a small quantity and will have to be activated for use. All this means is that you start it working, and therefore multiplying, so as to build up a much larger number of active yeast cells for introduction to the must. The principle is the same in most cases. Instead of adding the wine yeast direct to the must, one starts it off in a specially-prepared bottle of sterilised fruit juice of some sort, and...

What Yeast Do You Use For Birch Sap Wine

4 lbs, of peeled bananas V lb. of banana skins H lb. of raisins Yeast and nutrient 1 gallon of water 1 lemon, 1 orange 3 lbs. of sugar Use black or spotted bananas, whatever you can scrounge. Place bananas and fruit peel into a cloth bag and put the bag, tied up, into a large saucepan or boiler with the water. Bring to the boil, then gently simmer for half an hour. Pour the hot liquor over the sugar and fruit juice, and when the cloth bag has cooled squeeze it with the hands to extract as much...

Dont

Allow a single vinegar fly access to your wine at any stage. Use any metal vessel if the wine will be long in contact with it. Use any tools or containers of resinous wood. Try to speed a fermentation by too high a temperature. Be impatient making wine takes time. Let your wine stand on dead yeast or sediment. Filter unnecessarily or too soon most wines will clear of their own accord. Put wine in unsterilised bottles or jars. Bottle your wine whilst it is still fermenting. BUT surely you can't...

Winemaking Circles

WINEMAKING as an organised hobby is a comparatively new thing, although wines have been made in these islands for centuries in the cottages of country folk. It was only in 1953 that the first Winemakers' Circle was formed at Andover, closely followed quite independently and spontaneously by others at Welwyn Garden City and Cheltenham. In the few years since, however, the idea has spread with astounding speed, and by 1968 there were well over 400 such clubs, scattered the length and breadth of...

The hydrometer

Level Hydrometer

IF the fermentation trap is the winemaker's best friend, it is certainly run a close second by the hydrometer. A hydrometer is by no means essential to the production of good wine, but it is a great help, particularly if one is aiming at consistent results. Many winemakers seem to fight shy of it but in principle it is quite a simple device by means of it one can (a) determine how much sugar there is in any natural juice or must (b) determine how much sugar to add to a juice to produce a wine...