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Lemon wine refuses to ferment (long post)

Saw an article about making wine from frozen concentrate juices and wanted to try it. I chose the Great Value Lemonade mix (Filtered Water, Sugar, Lemon Juice Concentrate, Citric Acid, Lemon Pulp, Natural Flavors, Stevia Leaf Extract). I know the Stevia is NOT fermentable, so I added sugar. Here’s my 3 gallon basic recipe:
Peel & juice from 6 lemons
8- 12oz frozen lemonade
3 lbs sugar
2 tsp pectic enzyme
3 tsp yeast nutrient
1.5 tsp acid blend
1.5 tsp tannin
Red Star Cote des Blanc yeast

SG: 1.076
PH: 3.4
Temp: 64 F

I waited 72 hours and zero fermentation, so I read up and found out lemon wines can be stubborn, so I added another 2 tsp of yeast nutrient. waited another 48 hours and nothing. Raised the must temp to 82 F and nothing. Lowerd PH to 2.9 and nothing.
Did the Stevia kill it from the beginning? If not, what else did I miss?

I fermented orange juice from frozen concentrate. Just added water and honey. Im always afraid to add anything that has aloy of extra ingredients. Did you add a whole pack of yeast

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pH being too low will terminate fermentation…

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yes I did and I keep my yeast in fridge until day of pitching, hydrate it in 85F water, yeast was active, expiration 2-2023

Yeah 2.9 is really low which can negatively affect fermentation. Did the article tell you to do this?

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It gave a list of things to try since lemon can be stubborn. it was 3.4 until the very last attempt

Hmmm interesting that it suggest lowering the pH. Even 3.4 is pretty low for most yeast. Wine yeast is pretty heartier than beer yeast but for example most sour beers FINISH at around 3.4.

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but it is a wine… Thinking wine yeast can tolerate 4.5+… I almost think the yeast needs to get rolling along, then add the lemon must…

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I never checked the pH of the orange juice but what i did was like you said i started the fermentation with just water and honey and racked it on to the concentrate. Of course this is not helpful information at this point. You might try to make a jump starter with some watered down apple juice and rack it in


I misspoke, I lower the Acidity, Raising the PH to 3.9 not 2.9. All this PH stuff is new to me

Craziest thing happened, after 11 days of trying all these things, my Lemon Wine was slowly starting to ferment when I got home from work today!

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Out of curiosity, how was the orange wine?

Only thing I changed between my posting time til today was I removed the bag with the lemon peel in it because I was about at the “cutting my losses” stage and I was going to dump it. Quite curious how this will turn out

actualy was more of a honey wine or mead. because of the spices i needed to let it age. if i do it again i would use just sugar and less spices

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