Home Winemaking Activities On Opening Day
Today was Opening Day of the trout season where I am. Some readers will know that as well as making wine, I also am an avid fly fisher. I had plans to go out this afternoon. The weather forecast originally said it was going to be warm and sunny all day – I figured an afternoon and then into the evening might offer some nice results. However, the forecast changed. Instead of the sunshine, we had wild thunderstorms with winds gusting to 100 KM/H (60 MPH). I am not too bad at casting in windy conditions – but that is just nuts. And I certainly don’t want to be out on the water with a long piece of graphite while lightning is striking!
So instead of heading out, I thought I would give my wines some attention. I had meant to do this a couple of weeks ago, but decided on a spur of the moment trip to see Colleen for five days. When I returned, I had a lot of catching up to do on work related activities – home winemaking activities needed to be put on hold.
One thing I’m frustrated about – the GSM is still holding carbon dioxide gas. There were two things today I’ve never seen before – the second one I’ll get to in a moment. But the first one – this GSM that I started March 8/09 still has tons of tiny bubbles coming up when it’s agitated. It’s been in a warm spot for a month, and I’ve never seen a wine hold gas like this.
I also racked the Granache I started about a month ago – it’s tasting very good although of course, young. As readers may recall, my plan is to blend the Granache with the GSM. This evening, I added Kieselsol and then Chitosan which came with the kit. The Granache has very little CO2 in it, thankfully. Maybe sitting in the primary for 9 days does help with degassing.
Do you remember the “Mystery Wine?” There was a LOT of sediment on the bottom of the 5 gallon carboy it was in and I decided to rack it off of that. I ended up racking to a 4 gallon carboy and then there was enough left over to two thirds fill a gallon jug. Now, this was the wine that I had fermentation problems with, and was a bit concerned about it. I had a taste of it this evening – all I can say is that it is wonderful! It’s not much like the blackcurrant wine although it does have some notes in the flavor that were similar – I’m wondering if the berries in the freezer were indeed a mixture of black currant and purple gooseberries. I don’t know. But it sure is a “yummy” wine.
Now, the interesting thing – the second thing today I’ve never seen before: I took a specific gravity reading, and this was below the 0.900 mark. So I don’t really know exactly what the SG is. I’ve never seen a wine go below 0.900 when I’ve made it, previously. The beginning SG of this wine before fermenting was 1.104. I thought it might end up a little sweet – but it’s not. And it does not need sweetening – it’s quite good the way it is.
Too finish things off, I racked the Liebfraumilch as well. It has a nice fruity taste to it – I just had a very tiny sample – and it needs some degassing before adding clarifying ingredients. I was hoping to get to the Potato Wine, but time ran out. If I had more room, I could be doing a couple or more things at once, but right now space is limited. Hopefully that will be resolved soon, and I can get some of these winemaking activities done faster and in less time.
Tomorrow, I should give the potato wine some attention, and then if the weather co-operates, I’ll be wetting some flies and catching a few rainbow trout!