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Posted: 7/29/2009 12:19:51 PM EST
[Last Edit: 7/29/2009 12:21:17 PM EST by Kar15]
so a good friend and co-worker has inlisted my help/advice in pursuing a new hobby. i of course am coming straight here as this hive mind seems to always have the answers.

my frined has for some reason recently developed an exteme interest in home brewing. his first thoughts were to build a small home still, due to several aspects including manufacture of the still itself, and not the least of which at both my and his fathers urging was the letter of the law and possible violations, as well as dangers of containing a still inside his house and possible fumes/vapors and neither one of us having much knowledge of the stilling process other than having both read the foxfire book section on stills. so we've now talked him out of messing around with a still, at least until we can learn the appropriate laws and much more about the propper process for all around legal and safe destilling of alcohol...

in the mean time, my buddy has been doing a bunch of reading on wine and beer home brewing. he's decided this is the way to go for now. of this subject i have probably even less knowledge about so i'm turning here for help...

now while he's been doing a lot of reading on the actual process and what not i've been tasked with finding a good recipe. i suggested making something with apples as he and i both like apples and they happen to be about as cheap if not cheaper than most other types of fruit(neither one of us are big on watermellon). we would both like to do something along the lines of black berries or blue berries, but we've both had our hours cut pretty bad at work so this is going to have to be a hobby/project on the cheap. or as cheap as we can make it and berries aren't exactly cheap.

so any and all advice is ofcourse very welcomed, and in particular, any used trusted and tasty recipes would be very very appriciated!..

thanks in advance for any and all knowledge you fine folks can inpart!..

i'll ofcourse post updates as anythign interesting arises...

K.
Link Posted: 7/29/2009 12:37:04 PM EST
http://www.eckraus.com/wine-making-recipes.html

Legalities not withstanding, the problem with a home still is the loss of product. If you want a cheap buzz, wine is the way to go. You lose a percentage of alcohol on each pass through the still. It also adds expenses in equipment, fuel, filters, labor.

Wine can be made on your kitchen cabinet.

Apple juice concentrate is about the cheapest starter liquid you are going to find.

But ... if you have your own source for free materials (apple trees, plum trees, etc) you can save a few bucks.

By the time you buy a gallon of apple juice, a bag of sugar, some wine yeast, bottle to store it, a bottle capper, caps... etc.

A half gallon of cheap vodka mixed with cranberry juice seems more economical.

TRG
Link Posted: 7/29/2009 12:48:03 PM EST
i hear ya on the cheap buzz economics aspect, but this is going to be an exercise in expirimintation for the both of us.

we work at a bar so access to booze is no problem, it's more about the comradery and learning expierence for us...

i was thinking i could start having the bar tenders save the liquer bottles for us then we could possibly get away with just buying corks of a size that would work and save on a bit of cash that way?..
Link Posted: 7/29/2009 12:51:39 PM EST
Originally Posted By Kar15:
i hear ya on the cheap buzz economics aspect, but this is going to be an exercise in expirimintation for the both of us.

we work at a bar so access to booze is no problem, it's more about the comradery and learning expierence for us...

i was thinking i could start having the bar tenders save the liquer bottles for us then we could possibly get away with just buying corks of a size that would work and save on a bit of cash that way?..


Bottles that are made to be corked have extended necks to give the corks greater surface area to contact. Capped bottles with a screwtop do not work well for corking. It is not that they will not work, but you do have more chances for some problems.

TRG
Link Posted: 7/29/2009 3:04:00 PM EST
[Last Edit: 7/29/2009 3:10:56 PM EST by MrHunterAZ]
2 gallons organic apple cider
4 cans organic apple concentrate
(The organic is not important but there cannot be any preservatives, only water apples and sugar)
1 packet of safale 04 yeast
1 pill of yeast vitamins

Mix everything together with your yeast...sterility is key.

Place in a cool dark place. I think safale 04 brews best at 70-74 degrees...it will say on the pack. I store mine in a bathtub I don't use. After about 12 days you will see the bubbling slow, pour the contents out into another sterile container leaving behind the sediment. Don't be greedy trying to save every drop, the sediment is dead yeast which will rot giving your wine a bad flavor.

Let the wine sit again for weeks to months. Most people say 6 months but I drink mine around 4 weeks lol. The longer it ages the better it will taste.

For supplies I used 5 gallon water bottles and an airlock filled with vodka. If you use vodka instead of water it is safer because the vodka will keep nasties from growing in it and if you spill some of it in your fermenter you don't have to worry about it spoiling the batch.

It cost me about $40 to get started and I produced 2 gallons of apple wine with about 10-12% alcohol.

I forgot to say you might want a hydrometer too, you have to take a pre fermented measurement and a post fermented measurement to see the alcohol content.

Keep the bottles the apple cider comes in, they make great wine bottles later on.
Link Posted: 7/29/2009 3:25:15 PM EST
Originally Posted By MrHunterAZ:
2 gallons organic apple cider
4 cans organic apple concentrate
(The organic is not important but there cannot be any preservatives, only water apples and sugar)
1 packet of safale 04 yeast
1 pill of yeast vitamins

Mix everything together with your yeast...sterility is key.

Place in a cool dark place. I think safale 04 brews best at 70-74 degrees...it will say on the pack. I store mine in a bathtub I don't use. After about 12 days you will see the bubbling slow, pour the contents out into another sterile container leaving behind the sediment. Don't be greedy trying to save every drop, the sediment is dead yeast which will rot giving your wine a bad flavor.

It should be noted at this point in the instruction that the yeast is still alive and well in the wine. If you do not kill the yeast, it will continue to eat the remaining sugars in your wine and produce a dry wine. Often a wine that tastes GREAT at this stage, will lose alot of flavor as the sugars are eaten and the fruit flavors disappear. TRG

Let the wine sit again for weeks to months. Most people say 6 months but I drink mine around 4 weeks lol. The longer it ages the better it will taste.

For supplies I used 5 gallon water bottles and an airlock filled with vodka. If you use vodka instead of water it is safer because the vodka will keep nasties from growing in it and if you spill some of it in your fermenter you don't have to worry about it spoiling the batch.

It cost me about $40 to get started and I produced 2 gallons of apple wine with about 10-12% alcohol.

I forgot to say you might want a hydrometer too, you have to take a pre fermented measurement and a post fermented measurement to see the alcohol content.

Keep the bottles the apple cider comes in, they make great wine bottles later on.


not much to add except the portion in red. I have had some batches that were spectacular at the time of bottling that were disappointing months later. To each thier own, but I find that fresh wine 910-14 days old) is best simply chilled and served.

With a nice champagne yeast, you can even impress the guests by adding a spoonful of confectioner's sugar to a glass to watch it foam over the top with the active yeasts.

TRG
Link Posted: 7/29/2009 3:32:46 PM EST
LOL, noobs.
First clean everything, when I say clean make it super clean with boiling water after a bleach mix.
Take 5 gallons of juice, add upto five pounds of sugar to the boiled mix.
Add a good yeast mix, (wine yeast is better but bread yeast works).
A one way valve of some type, tube thru cork works into water jar.
When bubbles stop you have wine.
Link Posted: 7/30/2009 9:10:00 AM EST
Originally Posted By snarfbatt:
LOL, noobs.
.


hey, everyone's gotta start somewhere...

thanks to all, espicially TRG and MRhunterAZ!..

you guys are awesome, i rarely regret asking for advice or information in order to educate my poor ignorant ass. this place is rich with information and friendly folks willing to impart it to the layman...

i really appriciate it guys!..

K.
Link Posted: 7/30/2009 11:00:25 AM EST
[Last Edit: 7/30/2009 11:02:12 AM EST by ranchhand]
INGREDIENTS

1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
4 cups sugar
1 (12 fluid ounce) can frozen juice concentrate - any flavor except citrus, thawed
3 1/2 quarts cold water, or as needed

DIRECTIONS

1.Combine the yeast, sugar and juice concentrate in a gallon jug. Fill the jug the rest of the way with cold water. Rinse out a large balloon, and fit it over the opening of the jug. Secure the balloon with a rubber band.

2.Place jug in a cool dark place. Within a day you will notice the balloon starting to expand. As the sugar turns to alcohol the gasses released will fill up the balloon. When the balloon is deflated back to size the wine is ready to drink. It takes about 6 weeks total.

Not much easier than this!
Link Posted: 7/30/2009 11:27:36 AM EST
Originally Posted By TheRedGoat:
Originally Posted By MrHunterAZ:
2 gallons organic apple cider
4 cans organic apple concentrate
(The organic is not important but there cannot be any preservatives, only water apples and sugar)
1 packet of safale 04 yeast
1 pill of yeast vitamins

Mix everything together with your yeast...sterility is key.

Place in a cool dark place. I think safale 04 brews best at 70-74 degrees...it will say on the pack. I store mine in a bathtub I don't use. After about 12 days you will see the bubbling slow, pour the contents out into another sterile container leaving behind the sediment. Don't be greedy trying to save every drop, the sediment is dead yeast which will rot giving your wine a bad flavor.

It should be noted at this point in the instruction that the yeast is still alive and well in the wine. If you do not kill the yeast, it will continue to eat the remaining sugars in your wine and produce a dry wine. Often a wine that tastes GREAT at this stage, will lose alot of flavor as the sugars are eaten and the fruit flavors disappear. TRG

Let the wine sit again for weeks to months. Most people say 6 months but I drink mine around 4 weeks lol. The longer it ages the better it will taste.

For supplies I used 5 gallon water bottles and an airlock filled with vodka. If you use vodka instead of water it is safer because the vodka will keep nasties from growing in it and if you spill some of it in your fermenter you don't have to worry about it spoiling the batch.

It cost me about $40 to get started and I produced 2 gallons of apple wine with about 10-12% alcohol.

I forgot to say you might want a hydrometer too, you have to take a pre fermented measurement and a post fermented measurement to see the alcohol content.

Keep the bottles the apple cider comes in, they make great wine bottles later on.


not much to add except the portion in red. I have had some batches that were spectacular at the time of bottling that were disappointing months later. To each thier own, but I find that fresh wine 910-14 days old) is best simply chilled and served.

With a nice champagne yeast, you can even impress the guests by adding a spoonful of confectioner's sugar to a glass to watch it foam over the top with the active yeasts.

TRG


We're making wine here, not wine coolers lol. Sweet sugary wine is for women.
Link Posted: 7/30/2009 11:28:33 AM EST
How fancy you want to get? Easy, but hot, homemade 20/20:

frozen grape juice concentrate
1 pack of bread yeast
3-4 pounds of sugar
water
pack of balloons, and/or some gauze 4x4s and a rubber band
food grade plastic tubing
1 gallon juice bottle or similar - something with a mouth small enough to stretch a ballon over.

Clean the bottle with bleach and rinse well. Mix all ingredents and add water until you have a gallon or so - leave a few inches of headroom, dont fill it all the way to the neck. Stretch a balloon over the bottle mouth, or use a stack of gauze and rubber band for the first few days until fermentation slows down - once it does, add the balloon. Crack the seal on the balloon and let it deflate occasionally. Let the wine work until it stops fermenting, and let the yeast settle to the bottom of the bottle. Siphon the wine off into empty liquor bottles, while avoiding sucking up the sediment.

Add more or less sugar depending on how strong or sweet you want it to be. The yeast will either run out of sugar (dry wine) or die due to alcohol content first (sweeter wine).
Link Posted: 7/31/2009 1:26:35 PM EST
Originally Posted By MrHunterAZ:
We're making wine here, not wine coolers lol. Sweet sugary wine is for women.


Consider the source.
Link Posted: 8/4/2009 4:59:44 PM EST
Kinda pulling up an old thread, but was reading some stuff I missed and ran across this thread. I saw this recipe posted in another thread, and thought it was a good one. One day if I get my own place I'll try it. Another thread here where you might be able to get some more help.
Link Posted: 8/4/2009 5:49:32 PM EST
Originally Posted By rxdawg:
How fancy you want to get? Easy, but hot, homemade 20/20:

frozen grape juice concentrate
1 pack of bread yeast
3-4 pounds of sugar
water
pack of balloons, and/or some gauze 4x4s and a rubber band
food grade plastic tubing
1 gallon juice bottle or similar - something with a mouth small enough to stretch a ballon over.

Clean the bottle with bleach and rinse well. Mix all ingredents and add water until you have a gallon or so - leave a few inches of headroom, dont fill it all the way to the neck. Stretch a balloon over the bottle mouth, or use a stack of gauze and rubber band for the first few days until fermentation slows down - once it does, add the balloon. Crack the seal on the balloon and let it deflate occasionally. Let the wine work until it stops fermenting, and let the yeast settle to the bottom of the bottle. Siphon the wine off into empty liquor bottles, while avoiding sucking up the sediment.

Add more or less sugar depending on how strong or sweet you want it to be. The yeast will either run out of sugar (dry wine) or die due to alcohol content first (sweeter wine).


Daaaaannnger, Will Robinson.

I did this one time. The room was a little warm. The yeast went into overdrive and the stuff bubbled up into the balloon (it was a large one, IIRC). The balloon exploded and blew wine/yeast sludge all over the walls. It looked like a Salvador Dali painting. The room smelled gamy for some time.

Years ago I had some sour cherry trees. I made a good rose. It had a slight effervescence and was a good chilled summertime wine. I did this in 5 gal carboys with proper air locks.

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