Home brew / wine making

Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Wed 14 Mar 2018, 10:11 am

Cider's bottled - done half as 'sparkling' & half as 'still'.
Finishing SG was the previously mentioned 1.000 / 11.8% ABV.

Latest concoction - just started - is the 50/50% Cabernet Sauvignon/Pinot Noir mix.
Added oak chips ( came with the PN kit ) but don't know how effective they'll be - the kit they're from makes 4.5L, whereas the batch I've made is 9L.

Starting SG is 1.064
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Fri 16 Mar 2018, 1:19 pm

:oops: Wine fountain ! :oops:
You'd have thought having 9L in a 15L brew-bucket would give enough head-space to prevent this, but obviously not.
Still, it's got a bit more space now, as about half a litre frothed out :sad:
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Mon 19 Mar 2018, 6:12 pm

Couldn't resist the temptation any longer, so less than a month after bottling it I've just cracked open a bottle of the Mai Bock.
It's the last one I bottled & I was pushing it to get as much as possible out of the batch, so it ended up with a fair bit of sediment in it.
Thankfully it all settled out.

If you like a nice tangy malty beer which feels like it's kicking you in the head when you're drinking it, this is the one for you......subtle it ain't ! :biggrin:
Maybe it'll mellow with age, but I kind-of hope it doesn't.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Mon 19 Mar 2018, 7:19 pm

Checked the wine ( now it's finished it's Vesuvius session ) and the SG's down to 1.000, so about 8.5% ABV.

Continuing my sampling, I've just polished off a bottle of the first batch of cider I bottled back in October.
Made as 'sparkling' & it was very fizzy.
Not much of an apple taste - or maybe the earlier beer dulled my taste-buds :lol: - and very sharp.

Followed that up with a non-home-brew bottle of Tomos Watkin's 'Cwrw Idris', which - despite being 5.2% ABV - seemed rather tame taste-wise.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Tue 27 Mar 2018, 2:42 pm

Ooops !!
Tested the wine again this morning, still an SG of 1.00
Washing the hydrometer afterwards, I checked it in water & it was reading 1.01
Examining it, I found that some of the glass had broken off on the bottom ( hard to see normally, as it's over the ballast weight ) :facepalm:

Dug out a spare one & re-tested the wine.... 0.994 !
That's still only about 9.5% ABV, but better than I thought it was.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Fri 30 Mar 2018, 2:45 pm

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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Mon 09 Apr 2018, 2:45 pm

Wine's finished & ready to be bottled/bagged.

Undecided what to do next.
Contemplating doing another batch of Mai Bock ( using 3 kits for a decent brew )
Then again, I've got a Belgian framboos ale ( that's raspberry, for those who don't speak foreign :biggrin: ) which I fancy trying.

One of these days I'm gonna get a shed to do my brewing in, I can do several batches at a time then...and have room to store the finished product :lol:
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Wed 11 Apr 2018, 3:13 pm

Decided to do the Framboos.
Used 1.2Kg of LME instead of the 500g sugar/DME it called for.
As a result, the starting SG was 1.07 instead of the 1.053 it should have been.
Finishing SG's supposed to be 1.01, so that would be about 7.8% ABV instead of the 5.5% it's supposed to be.
Brew's a lightish red colour, with a strong raspberry aroma.
Be interesting to see how it turns out.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Fri 13 Apr 2018, 4:04 pm

Two days in & the SG's down to 1.02, so about 6.5% ABV.
Colour's changed from light red to a darker red, but it's still got a very strong raspberry aroma.
Unusually, I haven't tasted it yet ! :lol:
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Tue 17 Apr 2018, 3:49 pm

SG's down to 1.018 ( about 6.8% ABV )
It's no longer red, it now looks more like a normal ale.
Still smells of raspberry, though, and having now tasted it I can say it also tastes of raspberry :biggrin:
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Sat 21 Apr 2018, 3:10 pm

Picked up some lidded 30L buckets the other day.....that'll extend my brewing options. :biggrin:
Framboos still not ready.
Next on the list looks like it'll be the Mai Bock ( 3 cans to make 20L )

Nobody else brewing anything?
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby G for George on Tue 15 May 2018, 5:59 pm

Late back to this thread. Been having some work done on the house. No room for brewing! :roll: All finished now though, going to get a nice hoppy pale ale on this weekend I hope. Hopefully ready for the summer. You put a dent in your wine yet BC?
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Big Eric on Tue 15 May 2018, 6:03 pm

G for George wrote:Late back to this thread. Been having some work done on the house. No room for brewing! :roll: All finished now though, going to get a nice hoppy pale ale on this weekend I hope. Hopefully ready for the summer. You put a dent in your wine yet BC?


BC's been talking a load of gibberish on many other threads for the last couple of weeks, so I suppose he's made a rather large dent in his supply of plonk. :grin: :grin: :grin:
Big Eric

Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby G for George on Tue 15 May 2018, 6:21 pm

:lol:
G for George

Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Tue 15 May 2018, 6:41 pm

Oi! Point of order!....I don't need booze to post gibberish! :tongue: :lol:
That said, I have been sampling my wares & can honestly say that my 11.8% cider tastes better than my 9% cider...
And I sampled some more of the Mai Bock, mead & hopped Pils...
And some of both batches of white wine & some of the Rojo Tinto red wine
:dizzy:

Oh, and I bottled the Framboos last week. It finished at spot on 1.01 SG, so about 7.8% ABV.

Surprisingly enough I haven't started another batch of anything yet, although that may change tomorrow :biggrin:
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Wed 16 May 2018, 9:38 am

See...things changed. :lol:

Another batch of red wine.
This time, it's the Merlot-Cabernet Sauvignon blend ( 50-50% ) with a slack handful of oak chips thrown in.

About 12L ( so still not tried my 30L bins ) with a starting SG of 1.062 so if it finishes around 0.995 as it's supposed to, it'll be around 9% ABV
Might chuck some brewing sugar in there to try to raise the SG to around 1.085-1.09 which would be about 12% ABV

Edited to add :
....or not.
Just discovered that I ain't got any brewing sugar left ( other than some dark brown molasses sugar & some 'candi-crystal' sugar ) :oops:
Plenty of DME & LME, but I don't think that would work too well :lol:

Guess I'll have to order some more.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Tue 22 May 2018, 7:25 pm

Forgive me, for I am weak-willed.
It's been a hot day & I fell into temptation.

I've just scarfed back a bottle of the Framboos !
Only been maturing for about 2 weeks, when it really needs a minimum of 6-8, plus it wasn't chilled. :oops:

In true Belgian form it took several minutes to pour due to the amount of froth -- self-inflicted due to me adding 50% more priming sugar than normal.
Don't think it had fully cleared, as it was still cloudy - although a nice orange colour.
Still smelt of raspberry & most definitely tasted of raspberry.

If it was a wine it would be called 'robust', as it's an ale it feels like it's kicking you in the head as you're drinking it ( no surprise at almost 8% ABV )

Me likee. :win:

Oh, and the wine....
Got more brewing sugar, so I tested the SG & it was already down to 0.996 ( about 8.7% ABV )
I added enough sugar to take it back up to around 1.022
In theory, that difference ( .026 ) added to the original SG should make it up to around 1.088
Not 100% accurate, but it shouldn't be that far out.
If it gets down to around .996 again, that should make it just over 12% ABV. :biggrin:
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Mon 04 Jun 2018, 8:47 pm

Oops !!
Just sampled another Framboos.....definitely think I OD'd with the priming sugar as it did a Vesuvious impression the moment I started undoing the bottle cap :oops:
Sure hope it calms down if it's been chilled in a fridge.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Wed 13 Jun 2018, 7:46 pm

Just finished bottling the wine.
Finishing SG was .991(ish) which makes it around 12.5 - 12.75% ABV.
2x 5L 'bag-in-a-box' ( one with some oak chips chucked in, to see if they make any difference ) and 2x .75L bottles.

Think the 3-can Mai Bock will be next on the list.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Wed 20 Jun 2018, 10:10 am

As promised, the Mai Bock is now on the go.
3 cans & 500g of molasses sugar thrown in for good measure.
Starting OG is 1.084, which - if it finishes at 1.014 like it's supposed to - will make it potentially around 9.2% ABV.
Last batch ( which started at 1.04 ) finished at 1.012 so we'll see wha this one does.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Sat 23 Jun 2018, 3:16 pm

Just checked the SG of the Mai Bock, it's down to 1.03 ...... which is about 7% ABV :biggrin:
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Mon 02 Jul 2018, 2:46 pm

SG on the Mai Bock is down to 1.02 ..... that's about 8.4% ABV.
Guess it won't be bottled until after RIAT
:biggrin:
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Thu 19 Jul 2018, 9:57 am

The bottling of the Mai Bock has now begun.
Checked the SG and it's 1.016, which is just short of 9% ABV.
In a change from previous bottlings, I'm trying 'carbonation drops' instead of using standard brewing sugar or DME. The recommendation is 2 drops per 500ml bottle, but I'm only using 1.
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Re: Home brew / wine making

Postby Brevet Cable on Fri 20 Jul 2018, 2:21 pm

And following a marathon bottling session, the final result -- 39 bottles of ale! :biggrin:
( Or in real money, about 19.5L / 41 pints )
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