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InvisibleHefe
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Question about my homemade wine (Vinegar smell??)
    #6512342 - 01/30/07 03:12 PM (7 years, 6 months ago)

I've had a couple bottles of wine fermenting for about 2 weeks or so now, and i can smell a vinegar like odor emitting from them. I just used grape juice, sugar, and yeast, and popped a balloon with some pin pricks in the top on the bottle.

Is this ok? or is my wine gonna be vinegar/taste like shit?
thanks yall.


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Invisiblezorbman
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Registered: 06/04/04
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Re: Question about my homemade wine (Vinegar smell??) [Re: Hefe]
    #6512415 - 01/30/07 03:34 PM (7 years, 6 months ago)

Sounds like your batch may have been contaminated with acétobacter (vinegar) bacteria. I just started brewing mead a week ago so maybe someone else can give you a better idea.

I would definately invest in a real airlock. I bought the absolute minimum equipment I would need to get started and one of those was an airlock. A balloon can still allow outside contamination of your fermentation. (Not to mention the risk of imparting the flavor of rubber to your wine). An airlock only costs around a dollar so there is no reason to go without one. The cheap plastic ones are just as effective as the more expensive ones.



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Why does changing the party in power never change policy? Could it be that the views of both parties are essentially the same? - Ron Paul


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Offlinemattymonkey
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Re: Question about my homemade wine (Vinegar smell??) [Re: Hefe]
    #6513797 - 01/30/07 09:14 PM (7 years, 6 months ago)

sounds like your ferment has gone to vinegar. this happens when the sugar broth is exposed to fresh air. an airlock prevents fresh air from coming in, while letting gases out, ideal.

if you are interested in fermentation at all i highly suggest Stephen Buhners book, "Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers". He talks a lot about the history of fermentation, focusing on alcoholic brews concocted by indigenious peoples all over the world. One story I remember is that a tribe would put a new fermenter, probably some sort of ceramic vessel, next to an old one, so that the old one could "teach" the new one how to ferment. you see these yeasts and vinegar cultures travel in the air.. you can do a wild fermentation simply by leaving a container open for awhile, catching yeasts flying in the air. obviously a place that has been making wine/mead/beer for a long time will have lots of good yeasts around, while somewhere that has just started may not have many. yeasts are everywhere, on every fruit and probably on every vegetable as well. waiting for the plant to die, so that it may eat its sugars..

another tip.. if your ferment has gone to vinegar, you are gunna have to clean that vessel really well, practically sterilizing it. yeasts and cultures are microscopic, and even if you can't see them, they can still be there. this can ruin future batches and you want to be careful and diligint in this process, i learned the hard way..


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InvisibleBrainiac
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Re: Question about my homemade wine (Vinegar smell??) [Re: mattymonkey]
    #6514110 - 01/30/07 10:16 PM (7 years, 6 months ago)

Quote:

mattymonkey said:
sounds like your ferment has gone to vinegar. this happens when the sugar broth is exposed to fresh air. an airlock prevents fresh air from coming in, while letting gases out, ideal.

if you are interested in fermentation at all i highly suggest Stephen Buhners book, "Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers". He talks a lot about the history of fermentation, focusing on alcoholic brews concocted by indigenious peoples all over the world. One story I remember is that a tribe would put a new fermenter, probably some sort of ceramic vessel, next to an old one, so that the old one could "teach" the new one how to ferment. you see these yeasts and vinegar cultures travel in the air.. you can do a wild fermentation simply by leaving a container open for awhile, catching yeasts flying in the air. obviously a place that has been making wine/mead/beer for a long time will have lots of good yeasts around, while somewhere that has just started may not have many. yeasts are everywhere, on every fruit and probably on every vegetable as well. waiting for the plant to die, so that it may eat its sugars..

another tip.. if your ferment has gone to vinegar, you are gunna have to clean that vessel really well, practically sterilizing it. yeasts and cultures are microscopic, and even if you can't see them, they can still be there. this can ruin future batches and you want to be careful and diligint in this process, i learned the hard way..



:thumbup:


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Invisibledaussaulit
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Re: Question about my homemade wine (Vinegar smell??) [Re: mattymonkey]
    #6514159 - 01/30/07 10:26 PM (7 years, 6 months ago)

Not a total loss, at least you'll have some wine vinegar to cook with.

Quote:

mattymonkey said:you can do a wild fermentation simply by leaving a container open for awhile, catching yeasts flying in the air.



Brasserie Cantillon in Brussels, Belgium and a few other lambic breweries still brew like this. They just leave their wort to cool in a giant copper pan, and crack open the windows. They don't have any other way to cool it down, IE heat exchanger, so they just crack the windows open let the wild yeast "inoculate" the wort. They can only brew in the winter, because its not cool enough in the summer to chill the wort properly.

Same thing with bread making. You could start with the same exact water and flour, and make a sourdough starter by letting it sit outside, but the bread made from the starter in San Fransisco will not be the same as a starter made in New York, due to the specific yeast strains in the air.


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