Recent content by BarrelMonkey

Winemaking Talk - Winemaking Forum

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    Stabilizing a Press

    I screw mine down onto a wooden support, eg a pallet... as you say this has the added bonus of raising the spout
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    How to correct low pH and TA

    What @Rice_Guy said... it looks to me like you are in a good place. Plus, acidity is likely to rise a bit as you go through fermentation. I would be wary of changing anything before then, even though post-fermentation acid adjustments are more perilous. I recently found this article on the...
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    Degassing small samples for lab tests

    I'm planning to test pH and TA of my wine post-fermentation, and am concerned that results might be skewed by dissolved CO2. Options that I can think of include: - Heat to near boiling (may have to correct for evaporation if it's a small sample) - Just shake it up (low tech and free, but does...
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    Too Much SO2

    It was a white destined for sparkling wine. We just bottled it this week and it tastes great. I would imagine you would be in even better shape with reds. That being said - you could just leave it and see how it's shaping up a few months from now. The SO2 will get consumed over time...
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    Too Much SO2

    Sorry about your mishap! I can empathize as I've done the same thing (though on a much larger scale...) In my case we were able to successfully use H2O2 to mitigate the problem. I think the main thing (as with all adjustments, particularly post-fermentation) is to do it gradually, eg calculate...
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    Barrel Monkey Barrels Down

    I was trying to use mostly my own gear, but I don't have a destemmer/crusher yet so used the industrial gear. Next year I'm hoping to get a destemmer/crusher and some sort of device to drain off free run (like this one maybe?) so that I will be independent. Regarding the press, we use a large...
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    The Bread Thread

    Shout-out to Mrs Monkey for her wonderful sourdough bread which she makes probably twice a week. I think it can be called a San Francisco sourdough since the starter dates from when we lived there...
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    Barrel Monkey Barrels Down

    This was my first experience as winemaker (as opposed to helping hand/cellar rat) and so I thought I’d record how it went. Cellar crew comprised me and Mrs. Monkey. Harvest My starting point was ½ ton of Anderson Valley Pinot Noir. As several (including me) have reported on the forum, 2021 was...
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    Vessel Management - Post pressing

    TBH I would use the dry ice even if I wanted to rack and return at some later stage. Even if it's only for 30 min or so while you clean the barrel, that's a lot of surface area to leave exposed, not to mention the potential aeration from pumping wine in and out of the various vessels. How many...
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    Vessel Management - Post pressing

    I am at the same stage and nearly done fermenting 1/2 ton grapes, though I'm fortunate in having a spare barrel - so I plan to drain/press into one barrel (plus carboys/kegs to take any excess), leave to settle gross lees and then rack into my final aging barrel. If you don't have another 60 gal...
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    High jinx with high brix

    Yeah, I'd probably leave it as is with those numbers and those varietals. Hope the fermentation goes well, what yeast are you using? My pinot noir went negative brix today so I'm hopeful that I'm going to ferment to dryness... 👍
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    Wash and Sanitize question

    I use 100ppm SO2 in 2% w/v tartaric acid to sanitize. This is ~0.75g KMBS and ~57g tartaric acid per US gallon (yes, I know, metric and US gallons... it's what works for me). pH of the final solution should be ~2; be careful because this will liberate a lot of SO2 fumes as you prepare it...
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    High jinx with high brix

    I thought I would post this to share my experience of this year's harvest, and also to hopefully start some discussion around the best way to go about pre-fermentation adjustments when brix comes in a bit (or a lot!) high. I have followed with interest @NorCal's thread on making petit syrah from...
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    Must volume

    So... I asked Scott Labs for their recommendation, and the suggestion was to base it on pressed juice volume, but using a relatively high volume of 175 gal/ton. (Commercial winemakers use 150gal/ton, and home wine presses are probably closer to 130gal/ton). Hope this helps!
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    Must volume

    Me too - particularly nutrient additions. It makes sense to me that you'd use the volume of liquid rather than solid + liquid, but it seems like the morewine guide quoted by @Ajmassa uses total must volume?