Register Now!

Wine Making & Grape Growing Forum > Wine Making > Bottles, Labels & Corks > Headspace

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 04-20-2007, 10:58 AM   #1
Trubador
Senior Member
 
Oct 2006
Posts: 263
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts



I bottled my first wine, Winexpert Selection Merlot.


One of the minor mistakes I made along the way was to leave too much headspace in some of the bottles. In some bottles, it is as much as 3 inches of space between the bottom of the cork and the top of the wine.


In manybottles I only left an inch of space though. I learned a lesson and the next batch, I'll be much more careful when filling.


At any rate, since some of these bottles are now more prone to oxidation, does it make sense to drink them sooner? Or will it not affect the taste much? Just curious if anyone has ever left this much space accidentally and still turned out a decent wine.



Edited by: Trubador

 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 11:21 AM   #2
grapeman
Administrator
WMT_ADMIN.png
 
grapeman's Avatar
 
Nov 2005
Posts: 15,050
Liked 1099 Times on 734 Posts
Likes Given: 167




Welcome Trubador. We all learn from mistakes. As you gain more experience you will avoid many of them. Three inches is an awful lot and I would be a little worries about it. I'm just anal enough to uncork them, fill properly and recork.


Did you use a bottle filling cane? It's hard to get it wrong with that. Just fill to the top of the bottle and when you pull it out, the proper space is left for the ullage. Here is a link to the small one. There is also a bigger model.
http://www.finevinewines.com/ProdDet...artNumber=4861Edited by: appleman

 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 11:25 AM   #3
Trubador
Senior Member
 
Oct 2006
Posts: 263
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by appleman


Welcome Trubador. We all learn from mistakes. As you gain more experience you will avoid many of them. Three inches is an awful lot and I would be a little worries about it. I'm just anal enough to uncork them, fill properly and recork.


Did you use a bottle filling cane? It's hard to get it wrong with that. Just fill to the top of the bottle and when you pull it out, the proper space is left for the ullage. Here is a link to the small one. There is also a bigger model.
http://www.finevinewines.com/ProdDet...artNumber=4861

I am worried about it too! Would I just sacrifice one of the bottles and pour from that bottle into all the bottles which require less headspace? Does that in itself cause harm by oxidation?


What about the bottles with 2 inches? Are those "good to go?"

 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 11:26 AM   #4
masta
Senior Member
 
Jul 2004
Posts: 3,517
Liked 9 Times on 9 Posts


Welcome Trubador,
There is not telling how much the larger head space will affect the wine over time but as you said the 3'' is2 times more so the chances of a problem increase by 200%. Did you add the extra 1/4 tsp of K-meta for extended aging as per the directions? If so this will help preventany oxidation. Opening up the few with large head space and topping up with a commercial Merlot and re-corking would be the best for this wine since it really needs 6 months minimum aging. If not I would definitely drink these first.








 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 11:30 AM   #5
Trubador
Senior Member
 
Oct 2006
Posts: 263
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by masta
Welcome Trubador,
There is not telling how much the larger head space will affect the wine over time but as you said the 3'' is2 times more so the chances of a problem increase by 200%. Did you add the extra 1/4 tsp of K-meta for extended aging as per the directions? If so this will help preventany oxidation. Opening up the few with large head space and topping up with a commercial Merlot and re-corking would be the best for this wine since it really needs 6 months minimum aging. If not I would definitely drink these first.







I did not add the extra metabisulfite Another rookie mistake. But I have learned


I have had them bottled for a week now. I had bulk aged it a bit in the carboy for about 2 months longer than the kit direction said to, so the wine is now about 4 months old from the date I made it.


So, you think I should top up with Commercial Merlot rather than one of my bottles?

 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 02:40 PM   #6
Trubador
Senior Member
 
Oct 2006
Posts: 263
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


actually, I just got home and measured the distance with a ruler.
There is only one bottle with a 3-inch headspace. The majority
have a 1.75-inch headspace, a few have a 2-inch headspace and just a
few have a 2.25-inch headspace.



I do plan on drinking these before a year, mainly b/c it's my first
attempt at wine and I won't be able to contain myself.



Is 1.75-inch OK as far as headspace goes?



 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 04:19 PM   #7
grapeman
Administrator
WMT_ADMIN.png
 
grapeman's Avatar
 
Nov 2005
Posts: 15,050
Liked 1099 Times on 734 Posts
Likes Given: 167


Trubador,
it may be a little much but should be OK. Here's the solution. Get started immediately on another batch. It will take a few months to get it done and aged just a bit. In the mean time, drink your first batch and enjoy it. It might not keep perfect, but if you consume it within 6 months it will keep fine. When this batch is done, you will be able to start on drinking the next. If it's better, great, you learned something new. If the first is as good, even better you will know it didn't make that much difference.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 04:24 PM   #8
masta
Senior Member
 
Jul 2004
Posts: 3,517
Liked 9 Times on 9 Posts


I would say the 1.75 inch ones are fine and using a partial bottle to top up the others would work if you decide to do that. If not I would shoot for the 4 month mark from bottling to drink those.


What type of bottle did you use as some have a longer neck and the volume of head space is less?

 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 05:14 PM   #9
Trubador
Senior Member
 
Oct 2006
Posts: 263
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts



Quote:
Originally Posted by appleman
Trubador,
it may be a little much but should be OK. Here's the solution. Get
started immediately on another batch. It will take a few months to get
it done and aged just a bit. In the mean time, drink your first batch
and enjoy it. It might not keep perfect, but if you consume it within 6
months it will keep fine. When this batch is done, you will be able to
start on drinking the next. If it's better, great, you learned
something new. If the first is as good, even better you will know it
didn't make that much difference.


I agree



Already ordered my next batch, the Chardonnay/Semillon Kit from
Winexpert. I plan to age this one at least a year and have
learned a bunch on how to do that properly. It is a very fun
hobby and I'm just getting started. (I am a seasoned homebrewer
for beer, but have just begun wine)


 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2007, 05:18 PM   #10
Trubador
Senior Member
 
Oct 2006
Posts: 263
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by masta
I would say the 1.75 inch ones are fine and using a
partial bottle to top up the others would work if you decide to do
that. If not I would shoot for the 4 month mark from bottling to
drink those.


What type of bottle did you use as some have a longer neck and the volume of head space is less?


Thanks! I think I'll just leave them alone seeing as the majority
are 1.75 inch. When I get the itch to drink one of them soon,
I'll just look for the ones with the most headspace and drink those
first.



i used all different types of bottles, some had longer necks, some
didn't, some were blue, some were green. I wasn't shooting for
romance, just trying to get it bottled before my kids got home (1 and
3.5 years old)



- Jorma


 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Wine Making Forum Replies Last Post
headspace in primary? djlsdracula Beginners Wine Making Forum 9 05-31-2011 03:53 PM
Racking/headspace Flem Beginners Wine Making Forum 5 04-01-2011 02:47 PM
headspace...here is a pic captainl Beginners Wine Making Forum 21 01-16-2011 06:20 PM
HeadSpace skramer Skeeter Pee 4 01-13-2011 07:35 AM
still have headspace countrygirl Beginners Wine Making Forum 15 07-13-2010 06:20 PM


Forum Jump