Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Hiccup in bottling the sparkling concord

This fall has been a series of procrastinations in the winery due to needing to focus on some of life's little chores. I swore to myself that I was going to charge and bottle the concord base wine this weekend and start the secondary fermentation to make this a sparkling wine. I intend to use the "methode champenoise" to produce the sparkler--basically that means doing the secondary fermentation in the bottle.

After a slow start on Saturday (due to a Friday night social hour at work), I finished practicing the pipe organ and getting ready for the service on Sunday and headed for my favorite local home brew store (Beer-Wine Hobby in Woburn, MA) to pick up a crown capper, caps, yeast, and some champagne bottles. Filled my arms and got to the counter, only to discover that they only had 2 cases of champagne bottles and I needed 3.

Well, shucks... Not going to get that done after all.

Bought the 2 cases and headed home. Later that night, I realized that actually 2 cases would be perfect. I've got 6.5 gallons of base wine. 2 cases would allow me to bottle 5 gallons of wine. That would let me finish 1 gallon as a sweet still wine, and a couple of bottles as a dry wine just to see what happens. This stuff is tarter than crazy, but would be interesting to see how it ages and mellows.

Of course, by the time I thought of this, it's too late to bottle and I must wait until next weekend. I really, really, truely, double-dog swear that I'm going to get this stuff charged and bottled this weekend so that the secondary fermentation can get going before the basement gets cold. We'll see (even I have my doubts)...


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