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#105580 - 02/18/16 02:07 PM Re: Brew your own [Re: SIN3]
Asmedious Moderator Offline
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I doubt that super market grapes will work, just for the reasons you state. Also they likely use pesticides so washing is pretty important, but it's not good for wine making.

According to my limited knowledge in regards to the history of wine, way back before it was a science, it was more of an art and luck type of deal. More often then not, a batch would turn into vinegar, instead of wine.

The luck part came in when the naturally occurring yeasts in the wine were the type that fermented the grapes just right, and turned them into wine. Sometimes, it turned the batch into vinegar, or just garbage.
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#105589 - 02/19/16 10:24 AM Re: Brew your own [Re: Asmedious]
SIN3 Offline
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I'm sure plenty of people got sick from drinking bad wine over the centuries. I don't know that it's luck as it is science. For example, the presence of acetic acid bacteria will turn your potential wine to vinegar. Another way to foster the turn is too much oxygen, among other causes.

It's pretty much everywhere, in the air and on surfaces. The best I could do was to sterilize everything and keep all areas clean with anti-bacterial cleaner. I bought some anti-bacterial wipes so I could wipe things down as I go also (especially using balloons and rubber bands to create a seal). Another thing to watch for is fruit flies as carriers (carried in produce).

Some home brewers recommend adding So2 tablets to kill off the bacteria if there is any present in your container.

Another issue is temperatures. Most recommend 70* but others at what a typical cellar temperature would be. It's winter, so I didn't want to take the chance of it freezing if I stored it in my garage.

I figured that experimenting now would give me time to whip up a new batch in time for a Spring/Summer tasting party.
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#105616 - 02/21/16 01:14 AM Re: Brew your own [Re: SIN3]
manofsteel Offline
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A friend of mine did this same thing with the home distillery and used copper as well. It took him and his wife a while but they ended up making some amazing shit. I had apple pie, strawberry, cherry, watermelon and I can't even remember what all else they came up with but all of it was amazing. Good luck cause it it turns out anything like theirs did you will be in alcohol heaven.
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#105633 - 02/22/16 11:32 AM Re: Brew your own [Re: manofsteel]
SIN3 Offline
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The Lavlin Yeast arrived, container #6 may be the winner. It started bubbling and releasing gas within a few hours. The others are bubbling along also but it seems at a slower pace.

I'm still hunting down a pressure cooker for the still, haven't found one yet. Are these things banned for bomb making or something? I may need to order one online.



This is the style I need to transform it into a distiller.
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#105638 - 02/22/16 05:40 PM Re: Brew your own [Re: SIN3]
Asmedious Moderator Offline
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I've seen pressure cookers at Walmart. Not sure if it would work for a still (because I don't know what one does with a pressure cooker in that regard), but I am extremely satisfied with an electric one that I bought from QVC about a year ago.

I've used regular over the stove types, but man, the electric one is in class by itself.
One does have to do research, because there are some crappy ones out there, and other ones that are a bitch to close. Mine closes with a simple turn of the lid, never an issue.
The one I have cost just under $70.00. I think it was discontinued though.
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#105645 - 02/23/16 11:36 AM Re: Brew your own [Re: Asmedious]
SIN3 Offline
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Registered: 05/14/13
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Loc: Virginia


Here's the basic design using a pressure cooker. Design instructions here. Seems to be the most common no fuss design for a home still. It's nearly exact to what my buddy had going on in his kitchen. Video example here. Amazingly, I have a soldering iron on hand. Can't remember the last time I used it. Men have all these power tools just laying around, Women tend to buy them when needed, heh

I'm shopping around and in no rush. I figure my booze tasting party can be held over the Summer. I have plenty of time.

This is my busy season for making practical crafts. I just whipped up several pounds of homemade soap. The herbal stuff is in high demand by my dread-locked customers.

Not sure about peddling the wine. I did vend at a Renaissance Festival a few years ago and my vending neighbor was hocking Meade as 'Mouth Wash' which was a big hit on the D.L.

Mostly, I'm just doing it for fun.
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#105654 - 02/25/16 02:15 AM Re: Brew your own [Re: SIN3]
Asmedious Moderator Offline
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Registered: 09/02/07
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Loc: New York
I was surprised to find this and others on amazon. Not sure if the deal is that it's legal to buy and sell, but not to own. Which I know doesn't make any sense, but nothing surprises me anymore.

Well, finding this did surprise me, like I said.

stainless steel moonshine thingie.

Although, I can understand how making ones own set up would be much more satisfying. But it's good to know that if one own set up blows up the house there is a plan "B" available \:D


Edited by Asmedious (02/25/16 02:16 AM)
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#105655 - 02/25/16 05:50 PM Re: Brew your own [Re: Asmedious]
antikarmatomic Offline
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Registered: 09/22/13
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The plan B would be then using your own house :p
Plan A is always "elsewhere" or "someone else" - hence lab-rats and whatnot. Almost nothing goes right the first time - expect that, and have fun!
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#106007 - 03/28/16 04:21 AM Re: Brew your own [Re: Asmedious]
ta2zz Offline
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Registered: 08/28/07
Posts: 1552
Loc: Connecticut

Seems like owning a still isn't illegal but as soon as you light the fire and alcohol comes from it then it certainly is. I like the looks of this one here.

If you ever watched moonshiners you would know... you also know you need a coon pecker! Not surprising if you dont want to go farm one yourself you can also buy this on Amazon.com. Coon Pecker amazon or Coon Pecker eBay

~T~
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#106997 - 06/03/16 10:22 AM Re: Brew your own [Re: Mr_Lament]
SIN3 Offline
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Registered: 05/14/13
Posts: 7190
Loc: Virginia
Update on the Wine.



(apple/grape)

I filtered and bottled all but (2) 5 Gallon Containers and got 50 bottles out of it. The gravity test showed an 18% alcohol content and it sure did have a kick.



The filtering took a really long time. I experimented with a few methods and the most successful was using metal screens, cheese cloth and a variety of funnels.

(cherry)

I had a pre-game gathering to get feedback and the favorite was the Grape/Cranberry/Raspberry which tasted like a sweet Merlot. It wasn't too sweet, just enough.

We only killed 4.5 bottles but it was pretty strong. I packed the rest of the bottles away in sealed containers. The few I kept in the fridge are showing sediment on the bottom of the bottle but very little. The wine on top has a good clarity and it's not as murky as it was the first time around. I filtered each batch a dozen or more times.

I figure I'll leave the Kilju and Pear Wine to age a bit longer before attempting to filter it.

All and all I spent about $350 on supplies (including the bottles). The method I used seems sound, not a single batch turned to vinegar or was spoiled. Keeping everything sanitary and clean works out. As for the yeast quality, I didn't see much of a difference using the champagne yeast vs. bread yeast from the grocery store (both produced the same alcohol level). In terms of taste, I like the batches I used fresh fruit vs. fruit concentrate. The Raspberry added a nice flavor and there was very little fruit pulp to filter out when it was all said and done.

It's definitely a slow sipping wine, I was drunk after about 4 glasses. And I do mean, oops I've walked into a wall sorta drunk, haha
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#107000 - 06/03/16 12:41 PM Re: Brew your own [Re: SIN3]
Asmedious Moderator Offline
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Registered: 09/02/07
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Loc: New York
That's a lot of wine.

Was the bread yeast dry yeast in those packets?
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#107003 - 06/03/16 12:58 PM Re: Brew your own [Re: Asmedious]
SIN3 Offline
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Registered: 05/14/13
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Loc: Virginia
I used a couple of different sorts to experiment.

Fleishmann's is sold in jars, so I bought one of them.

I also tried the rapid-rise in packets. All of this is available at any grocer.

The champagne yeast (dry) in packets but I had to order that online. I couldn't seem to find it anywhere, not even the wine dealers carried it.

It is a lot of wine but it's slowly being doled out. I've given away a few bottles and been drinking them myself. I'm hoping to hang on to at least a dozen or so to age it further and see what turns out in a year or so.



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