Thursday, August 30, 2007

Toast to Erik

Yesterday, my friend Erik had a final exam in French. Its a class he's been studying throughout the summer. Later that evening I decided to make a toast to congratulate his achievement. I thought it would only be proper to celebrate with some good champagne. So I opened a 12oz bottle of homemade bubbly.

It turned out to be a fun evening of chatting. Erik arrived in Chicago Monday evening, and Erik's Jeanie flew in that evening. It was nice to play a little catch-up, after our baby fell fast asleep. Here you can see Erik is deep in thought but totally relaxed and free, and Jeannie admiring it's lovely color.

This was an impulsive batch of fermented juice. After racking the Belgian Strong Ale, I simply could not let all that great performing yeast go to waste. So I looked around for something to ferment. In the pantry was a 64oz. bottle of Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice, and in the refrigerator was about 32 ounces of TJ's Organic White Grape Juice.

After sterilizing a 4 liter flask fermenter, I just poured everything in and gave it a good swish. It started to ferment in good time, and fizzed for a few weeks. After about a month I transferred it to secondary for clearing.

What started out as a vibrant pinkish-red colo
red must, transformed into a medium yellow with a slight blush in the round of the glass. It seems like the yeast somehow absorbed all the pigment from the juice because it was pink sludge in the end. This was a total experiment. I am very pleased to find it was a total success. It tastes very tart and dry, and very much like a robust champagne. I gave it some priming sugar to build up bubbly in the bottle. In the end I got a couple 22oz and a number of 12oz bottles. It's exciting to know that I have some good homemade champagne to use in celebratory occasions like this one.

Felicitations Erik!

Merci de lire ce blog.


Travis said...

Very cool. That's awesome that you just threw some fermentables together and walla! You have a nice adult beverage.

Exciting and thought provoking.

Ted Danyluk said...

Yeah it is cool. I had no idea it would turn out this good. I'm very interested in "throwing things together," to make healthy fermented beverages. Honey, fruits, ginger, herbs & spices. I think the thing that really made it turn out good was the large volume healthy of healthy yeast. It got going within hours, and didn't give bacteria a chance to grow.