It’s time to use the plums before they all fall from the tree and spoil. A lot of our plums are already splitting open on the tree from being ripe and having all the moisture we’ve been getting the past couple weeks. I am making the same recipe I made last year for plum wine because it turned out really well. The only differences this time is that I am going to use my steam juicer to get the juice from all the plums instead of mashing them in the primary, and I am using a different kind of yeast.
Washed and halved all of the plums, removing the stems and pits. I then added all the fruit to my steam juicer, filling it all the way to the top with only 15 lbs of the plums. I started heating the water and let it juice for about 30 minutes before adding in the remaining 5 lbs of plums (I gave it time for the plums in the steam juicer to cook down a bit, giving me more room for the remaining plums.) I ended up juicing the plums for 2 hours, twice as long as I expected. The skins and pulp were clogging the small holes and slowing the juice from dripping through. I mixed the pulp a few times and tried to scrape it off the sides and bottom to let more juice through. At the end, I came away with 1.75 gallons of juice with an OG of about 1.040.
I cool water until I reached 4 gallons, and added in my sugar to reach a OG of 1.124. I then measured the acidity of the wine. Initial TA was 0.35%, so I added 2 Tbsp of acid blend to raise the TA to 0.57% (a TA of 0.60% is recommended for fruit wines.) I added the grape tanning, pectic enzyme, and yeast nutrient. I am again skipping Campden tablets as I believe the steam juicing process kills any wild yeast and bacteria and pasteurizes the juice. When the must reached 85 F, I pitched in my dry yeast and sealed the bucket with an airlock.
9-21-10: Put into primary bucket, OG measured at 1.124.
10-2-10: Racked to 5-gallon carboy. SG measured at 1.040.
10-17-10: Racked the wine again, there was about three inches of sediment and yeast that had settled to the bottom of the carboy. SG measured at 1.032.
4-14-11: Bottled into 37 12-ounce bottles.