Category Archives: Fermenting

Mixed Berry Wine……

What to do when you have a mixture of fruit…..

Mixed Berry

Dissolve 8 pounds sugar with

  • 36 cups boiling water
  • 12 cups cool, filtered water

Add :

  • 5 pounds Blackberries
  • 2 pounds Strawberries
  • 8 pounds raspberries


  • 36 cups boiled
  • 12 cups filtered cool


  • 5.0 Campden crushed add when must cooled
  • 2.5 tsp enzyme (add 12 hours after campden)
  • 7.5 tsp acid blend
  • 2.5 tsp energizer
  • 5.0 tsp nutrient

Wine Yeast:

  • Red Star Premier Cuvée

SG: 1.092, PA 12%, Brix 22

Started Blackberry Port Wine…….

I used Winemakers Magazine Blackberry Port recipe 3 years ago.  It was a favorite of my friends and family.  I started a 6 Gallon batch today.

  • 36 pounds blackberries
  • 3 cups light dried malt
  • 10.5 pounds of sugar
  • 3 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 7.5 tsp acid blend
  • 3 gallons (48 cups) of water
  • 6 campden tablets
  • 3 tsp yeast energizer
  • 6 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 2 packages Lalvin K1-V1116

With blackberries in season in the northwest,  there are plenty of wild berries to be found.  My sweetie picks several days for a couple of weeks.  We keep them in the freezer until there is enough for me to start my batch of wine.

Day 1:

  • Place sugar into primary fermenter
  • To this add 9 cups boiled water
  • Stir until the sugar is thoroughly dissolved and have clear simple sugar mix
  • Next, place a fruit bag in the fermenter
  • Begin adding blackberries…most of mine were frozen.  So as I added berries, I also poured over more boiling water at the rate of 6 cups.  I continued this process until all 36 pounds of berries and the 3 gallons of water were added to the bucket.
  • Next I stirred well, covered lightly with a towel, then left to sit overnight to further defrost and allow berries to release their juice.

Day 2:

  • Stirred berries and crushed, checked temperature which was around 64 degrees.
  • I added the crushed campden, mixed with cool filtered water, and stirred thoroughly in fruit
  • Next, I dissolved the energizer, nutrient, acid blend, with filtered water and added this to the fruit mixture.
  • I made note of the time, 10:00 AM.
  • At 10:00 PM, after the campden has had a chance to dissipate, I will add the pectic enzyme.
  • I assembled my yeast starter, which I will pitch around 10:00 AM tomorrow.

Yeast Starter:

  • To a 1/2 gallon jar, I added 1 tsp of sugar and 2 dashes of yeast nutrient
  • Next I added 1 cup of boiled and cooled water with temp about 100 degrees.
  • I mixed thoroughly the sprinkled the 2 yeast packets over the starter.
  • I covered the jar with a paper towel and rubber band.
  • I will continue to feed the yeast every two hours

SG 1.102, PA 14%, Brix 25

Plum wine racked for aging….

Well it is time to rack the plum off of the lees. To do this, I chose to rack them to a large bucket and blend together. Then I racked into separate car boys to age. I also took a reading using my hydrometer.

  1. Specific Gravity: 1.00, PA: 0.0, and Brix: 0.0
  2. Starting Brix: 26.5, ending 0.0, approximate finished Alcohol – 15%

Now they will sit and age.

Blueberry Wine…..

Started our Blueberry wine yesterday.   

  • 25 pounds of frozen blueberries (5 – 5# bags)
  • 8 pounds of sugar
  • 2.5 tsp of Pectic enzyme
  • 7.5 tsp of acid blend
  • 2.5 tsp of yeast energizer
  • 5 tsp of yeast nutrient
  • 1 campden tablet (oops….should be 1 for every gallon.  Just added 4 more….)
  • Enough boiled and cooled water to dissolve sugar then add to bucket

Placed all blueberries in the straining bag and poured 1 gallon of boiling water over the berries.  Covered with a towel, crushed berries over the next few hours to extract juice.  Tied top of bag and pushed down into ferment bucket.  Poured dissolved sugar over berries and crushed again.  Topped us fermentor to 5 gallons.  Stirred in all ingredients except yeast.

Started my yeast starter this morning

  • Heated and cooled water to 95 degrees
  • Poured water into 1 quart jar
  • Added 1/2 tsp of sugar and pinch of yeast energizer (not nutrient).  Stirring until disolved.
  • Next sprinkled Lalvin K1-V1116 yeast on top of mixture in jar
  • Placed paper towel over jar and held it on using rubber band

Will feed the starter every 2 hours with 1/4 cup warm water, 1/4 tsp sugar, and pinch of yeast energizer.  We do that the next 24 hours.

Checked must:

  • Brix: 21.5, PA 12.5%, S.G. 1.090



TGIF! Good morning wine, cheese, and bread…

This morning checked on both batches of plum wine and baked more zucchini bread!

Batch 1, where the fruit has been removed, is still fermenting nicely.  This morning:

  • Brix at 18.5, PA 10%, S.G. 1.070
  • PH 3.2 and Acid at .875
  • Stirred well
  • Cleaned and filled airlock with fresh sanitizer

Batch 2, added the airlock with sanitizer to keep out fruit flies

  • Still has the fruit bag, which I will remove around day 5 after pitching yeast
  • Pushed down fruit bag, stirred well
  • Cleaned and filled airlock with fresh sanitzer

Colby Cheese:

  • Air drying nicely
  • Wipe a few spots with cheesecloth and small amount of vinegar
  • Should be able to begin chilling tomorrow prior to waxing then aging


  • Baked the last two loaves of zucchini bread from the one zucchini
  • That makes 6 total, 5 went into the freezer for this winter.