racking issue?

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jonc
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racking issue?

Post: # 36919Post jonc
Fri Oct 13, 2006 5:34 pm

Hello

I've just racked my first batch of parsnip wine as it's been going for 3 months now :). The demi-john is about 4/5 full, which means there is an air gap above the wine - will this ccntact with air make the wine go off? I guess that the carbon dioxide produced by fermentation would have protected it before I racked it..

I racked into a bucket and then sterilised the demi-john and put it back in and re-fitted the airlock.

Thanks

Jon

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Stonehead
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Re: racking issue?

Post: # 36931Post Stonehead
Fri Oct 13, 2006 8:02 pm

jonc wrote:Hello

I've just racked my first batch of parsnip wine as it's been going for 3 months now :). The demi-john is about 4/5 full, which means there is an air gap above the wine - will this ccntact with air make the wine go off? I guess that the carbon dioxide produced by fermentation would have protected it before I racked it..

I racked into a bucket and then sterilised the demi-john and put it back in and re-fitted the airlock.

Thanks

Jon
You can leave as is with a small chance of contamination (given that you seem to have been careful with your sterilisation etc); top up with clean water (dilutes the wine) or with more parsnip wine (you make several demi-johns worth and use one to top up the rest; or one 5 gallon fermenter and one 1-gallon demi-john); or add a small amount of sugar syrup to kick the fermentation off again, create more CO2 and drive off the air.

I prefer topping up with more of the same, but this is not always possible if all your fermenters and demi-johns are in use. When this is the case, I add sugar syrup - half a pound of sugar with just enough boiling water to dissolve it when stirred well. Leave to cool and add to the fermenting vessel. (This is for 5 gallons BTW.) This doesn't make that much difference to the strength and has no effect on flavour.
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Post: # 36932Post Chickpea
Fri Oct 13, 2006 8:20 pm

I agree with Stoney (as is so often the case). I'd top it up with sugar syrup. But sometimes you can get the never-ending ferment that way, especially with parsnip wine which can be a bugger to clear and throw huge amounts of sediment. How's it looking, clarity-wise?

jonc
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Post: # 36967Post jonc
Sat Oct 14, 2006 8:33 am

It's looking fairly clear at the moment. There was a lot of sediment before the racking though

elfcurry
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racking question

Post: # 37140Post elfcurry
Sun Oct 15, 2006 5:01 pm

I've got a question.

What do you do with the slugde? Chuck it? I still find it hard to separate it from the liquid and it's often a significant proportion of the whole so I feel reluctant to throw it away though presumably you could compost it? I've also sometimes drunk the more fluid parts if it tastes nice (this is starting to sound desperate!)

I used to worry that fruit pulp with flavour and nutrients, yeast and (worst of all!) some alcohol are being discarded and that fermentation of the remainder would stop which seems to have happened now.

I tried putting the dregs from this batch into a fizzy drink bottle, to enable the liquid to be separated more easily (being narrower, the liquid is easier to pour off) intending to return the fliud to the demi-john. It was still active so I put some more sugar solution with it and have been observing it with great interest. It separated into three layers: mostly sludge with pulp and bits, some liquid and a coloured frothy top. When the pressure is released nothing much happens for a few seconds, then the sludge erupts, mixing it all up and it looks like a storm on Jupiter; it's just the right colour for the red spot, being plum wine. Several times a day I release it and reclose it to keep it sterile.

This made me wonder about making wine on a very small scale, say if you have only a small quantity of the ingredients or want to experiment with yeast, sugar or fruit content.

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Post: # 37230Post Chickpea
Mon Oct 16, 2006 1:27 pm

The sludge from the first racking contains nasties that would give an "off" flavour to the wine if you left it. That's why you rack it and that's why you should chuck it. I'm sure I've heard of it being fed to pigs, though, but of course you can't do that nowadays. Don't see why you can't compost it, it's organic.

The slughe from the second racking can be used as a starter bottle for future batches of wine, although I don't see how you could keep it for very long, perhaps it might last a while in the fridge.

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