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Phew! - oldbloke's mutterings
July 17th, 2011
10:09 pm
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Phew!
On Tuesday I started the redcurrant wine by leaving the redcurrants to mash - with appropriate sulphite to prevent spoiling, and pectolase after the first 24 hours. On Friday I strained the result onto the sugar, heating it slightly to help the sugar dissolve, then pitched the yeast (with nutrient).
And it did almost nothing. And it had smelt a bit funny.
Had it gone bad despite the sulphite?
Had I forgotten to rinse the VWP out of the mash bucket?
Had I killed the yeast by rehydrating it at too high a temperature, or by then pitching it with too much temperature differential?
Would I need to bung it all back into a pan, bring it to boiling, cool it, and pitch new yeast?

But.. It had done /almost/ nothing, not _completely_ nothing. So late Saturday I gave it a good stir, JIC. And it did start to bubble, but ohsoslowly.
Now, I hadn't added any water, as these things sometimes freak out and attempt to crawl out through the airlock (the raspberry did, the nettle did, the WOW is trying to), and it had a LOT of sugar - 3lbs. Some yeasts struggle in high concentrations of sugar. And this yeast likes to start warm (rehydrate at 40, pitch no less than 30, ferment 20-24). So I added a pint of water at about 37, to dilute the sugar and warm everything up a bit, and gave it another good stir.
And finally, there's a foamy yeast layer forming at the top of the must.
Saved!
Unless of course it's some kind of mould...

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