RJ Cole Winery

Insights into the world of an amateur home winemaker.

Location: Charlotte, North Carolina, United States

Cole Wines anagrams to Senile Cow.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

2nd Run in 2ndary!

3 days is all it took! Friday, after work, I checked the SG of the 2nd run Blackberry again and it was all the way down to 1.008. So I rinsed out and sanitized my brand new 3 gallon carboy and transfered the wine over. I scooped out some of the lees that were still floating with a strainer and washed them and what was left in the bag down the garbage disposal. I then rinsed out the bag really well, and I'm going to throw it in the washer by itself.

As I was finishing up siphoning, the carboy was about half way between the bottom of the enck and the shoulder of the carboy. I was getting mostly sediment through the siphon by then. As I looked at the bottom of the primary, there was still a good bit of wine left, but it was completely full of sediment. I guess that since this wine fermented so quickly, the gross lees didn't have time to compact at all. So I pulled out the strainer again, tilted the bucket so everything was on one side, snd started scooping again. It took a little while, but I got to where I was confident that it would be okay to start the siphon again. In the end, I had to add about 2 cups of water to the carboy to top it off properly. But my alcohol level was probably a little high, so that should be fine.

So now, my storage closet is filled with full carboys: 6 gallons of Carm/Cab, 5 gallons of Strawberry, 5.5 gallons of 1st run Blackberry and 3 gallons of 2nd run Blackberry. Now I'm just waiting on the Cab Franc grapes and enough blueberries to make some more!

Speaking of the grapes, I've purchased a refractometer which will help me determine the Brix of the grapes while in the field, Brix is another measurement of dissolved sugars in water, like SG, and is primarily used for making wine and spirits. It's a neat little tool! Next up will be a pH Meter to determine the "acidity" of the grapes. I also found out that Alternative Beverage does rent Crushers/Destemmers and Presses! So I'm almost all set to venture into the next area of winemaking - grapes!


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