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    Bees, Birds and damaged grapes - what to do?

    Hi all, I've got some Petite Sirah grapes in our backyard located in the greater Lodi AVA (California). Current BRIX is 23.5. A few weeks ago, I noticed several damaged clusters with many berries on the ground. I thought it was birds, but can't say for certain because I didn't see them in...
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    MV Chard Kit - 6 Mo's - No nose, little to no flavor?

    Hi all, The details: Master Vintner Limited Edition 2016: Philosophie Chardonnay Purchased from Northern Brewer in Dec 2017. Yeast that came with kit: Lalvin ICV-D47 Yeast that I substituted for: Lalvin CY3079 French Medium toast cubes used during primary. Bentonite used at the start...
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    Some cordon areas lacking buds - 4th year vines

    Hi All, I've got some Cab Sauv and Petite Sirah vines in our backyard. This is their 4th year and already well into bud break. I noticed last year, and again this year, that there are buds missing from a few of the cordon area's, particularly on the Petite Sirah. It looks like all renewal...
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    Limited space cold room / wine storage build

    Like many, I was in need of a place to keep wine (both finished and in process) in an appropriate temperature controlled environment, especially since I live near the Lodi CA AVA where temps in the summer often exceed 100F but can also go below freezing during some winter nights. The issue for...
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    WineXpert Kit Chemistry Off?

    Hi all, I've just begun making wine from a kit: Selection Premium Vieux Chateau Du Roi (Chateauneuf du Pape) I'm going to follow the instructions, except for the sorbate. I've added the water & bentonite per the instructions, mixed (did not start fermentation), and took some chemistry...
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    To Preserve Pressed Wine Skins Or Not

    Hi all, Does anyone preserve, or freeze, their skins w/seeds after pressing? I'm considering doing that after trying to find some grape skin packs for use with wine kits and not finding many options...or what is there is very expensive. However, I'm not really sure 1) if it's a good...
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    Norton Grapes - Really Low Amount Of Juice In Must

    Hey all, I just finished destemming and crushing (by hand with a large stainless steel potato masher) 100 pounds of Norton grapes purchased from a local vineyard (Clarksburg AVA). The skins seemed a bit wrinkled, but not raisened. There is an estimated 16 - 17 lbs of must. The essentials...
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    Links To Online Sellers Of Fresh Grapes, Juice & Frozen Pails For Delivery

    Hey all, Any recommendations for online sellers of Fresh Grapes, Fresh Juice and Frozen Pails & Juice who are willing to ship to 'home' vintners? Either from a vineyard direct, or a broker or reseller? Seems like many who carry those products only sell for local pick up. This could be due to...
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    Other Best Kit For Dry, Full Bodied, Tannic 'High End' Wine?

    Hello forum, I'm in the process of making my first wine from fresh grapes (from my own backyard vineyard). So I have the wine making equipment. However, I'd like to try and make some wine (from grapes) using a kit as well. I know this isn't a straight match, but very generically...
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    Post Harvest Fertilization

    Hi all, Due to leafhopper damage (i.e. more leaf fall than typical for this time of year), I'm considering fertilization post harvest for my 3rd leaf backyard vines near Lodi CA ava. From what I've read, some advocate fall fertilization (post harvest) regardless, so I'm considering that as...
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    MLF - How To Tell It's Going & 'Typical' Finish Times?

    Hi all, A few questions about malolactic fermentation. First, some details: Grapes involved - Cab Sauv, Petite Sirah, Pinot Noir, all fermented to 'dryness' (below 1.000 SG). Wine racked off lees. pH of all between 3.6 - 3.7. SO2 levels all around 5 ppm. Temp of juice ~72F. All inoculated (2...
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    Primary was great, Secondary now stopped after racking?

    Ok, this question/situation, clearly, is the result of being a 1st time vintner :slp I've got 3 batches of wine (Pinot Noir, Petite Sirah & Cab Sauv), all from fresh grapes, that appear to me to be stuck during what I believe is considered the secondary fermentation period. Conditions for all...
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    Imidacloprid vs Acetamiprid Insecticides (Neonicotinoids)

    Some information, and differences on two Neonicotinoids, used to treat grapes for sucking insects, some chewing insects and soil insects. http://www.beyondpesticides.org/programs/bee-protective-pollinators-and-pesticides/chemicals-implicated Another factor is half life in the soil...
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    After Harvest & Dormant Vines - Pest Control

    Hi all, Pest control for post harvest and when vines are dormant, what the recommendation genearlly? I'm near the Lodi CA AVA, and had some issues with powdery mildew and a serious issue with leafhoppers on Cab Sauv and Petite Sirah vines. Now that the fruit has been harvested, what, if...
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    Sulfite Calculator Formula (w/curr SO2, pH, Temp, etc)?

    Hi all, Does anyone know what the formula (the actual calculation) is behind this: Sulfite Calculator I'm looking for the actual formula for use offline. I have the one where you plug in the desired SO2 level, and gallons of must/wine...but I'm looking for this more complete formula...
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    Cold soaking must now smells of acetone

    Hi all, I've got about 10 gallons of petite sirah must, grapes from our home vineyard, sitting at 65 F in a stainless steel tank in a cold box since last Sunday (about 5 days now). All equipment that's been in contact with the grapes / must (aside from the bypass loppers) were sterilized...
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    Inkbird Itc-308 alternative to Coolbot?

    Hi forum, I'm building a ~185 cu ft coldbox for winemaking / wine storage (aging) for my garage in N CA. Ambient temp in the summer, early fall is often high 80's to mid 90's. The box is insulated and will be cooled using a 6150 BTU window a/c unit (got a great deal on it, otherwise, would...
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    Vinmetrica SC-300 Group Buy (Discount)

    Hi all, Here is a message from the Sacramento Home Winemakers group, who are trying to get together 10 people in order to get a group buy discount on the Vinmetrica SC-300. I've already put my name in as one who is interested...I think they said there were a few more spots left to get to 10...
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    Dark spots on some PS clusters, but not on CS clusters?

    Hi all, Any ideas what this might be (the dark/black spots)? This has appeared in the last week (since I last checked the vines). It appears only on a few Petite Sirah clusters (out of 16 vines), and not on any Cabernet Sauvignon (out of 8 vines). These are 3rd year vines, the rows are very...
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    Plastic Vs Glass Carboys For Vacuum Transfers

    Hi all, Does anyone use only plastic carboys for wine making that includes only vacuum transfers / racking? I've seen the video of Steve doing the vacuum transfer from a glass carboy into a plastic one...but not a vacuum transfer that involves plastic on both ends. I like the idea of...
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