It is nearly two weeks since I first started brewing homemade vishniak. Just to recap, one container has a mixture of pitted cherries, sugar, and vodka. The other container, the Lanie S. recipe, has unpitted cherries and sugar. Lanie S. instructed me to let the mixture ferment for two weeks before adding the vodka. (Note: I added about 1 2/3 cups vodka)
The mixture of cherries and sugar is certainly fermenting. The sugar dissolved and the cherries gave up liquid. As you can see from the above picture, there is about an inch of cherry colored liquid beneath the floating cherries. The liquid is slightly bubbling, like a barely carbonated beverage. There is an overpowering alcoholic aroma coming from the mixture.
The cherry, sugar, and vodka mixture, strangely enough, does not smell alcoholic especially (certainly not by comparison the Lanie S. sugar/cherry mixture!). The blueberry, sugar, vodka mixture does smell alcoholic. The liquid in all the mixtures is infused a deep color.
update: After I add the vodka to the Lanie S. mixture, it continues to smell stronger than the other liqueur for a long time. By September, the Lanie S. mixture gives off slightly less intense fumes. Sometime in the intervening weeks, I put the Lanie S. mixture through coffee filters a few times to get rid of this white sediment that seems to have fallen to the bottom of the container. (Part of the fermentation process?)
update: the visinata is ready!