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CDrew

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The main Barbera fermentation was a -0.5 brix last night after work so I should have pressed then, but gambled that it would still be fine this am. After press I have exactly 15 gallons (2 x 6.5, 2 x 1) of new wine, so after racking off the gross lees I'll have 14 or so. I may have to supplement with a gallon or so of Primitivo to get to the 15 gallons I like at a time for aging. Color is fantastic as is the initial taste. I was carefully watching the bladder press output. I took it up to 1 bar and kept it there maybe 5 minutes, then took it to 2 bar for 5 minutes. By rough estimate I only got another 500ml at the most. Just not very much. So I'm still investigating press pressures and will likely just go to 1 bar from now on. I'll try and come back with a color shot.

The Rose was at +0.5 brix last night, and I did not check today, but I'm racking tonight regardless. Looks like 13 gallons or so so maybe I can yield 2 x 6 gallon carboys which I have and are currently empty. And BTW the color when I tested it last night is spot on for a light pink Rose. Very happy is isn't too dark.

Believe it or not, there are still grapes for sale up in the Foothills, but I am done after this. My two initial favorites of 2020 are the Primitivo and the Barbera. It will be interesting to see how the wine develops over time. At 2 years, I'm guessing the Syrah will have pulled ahead.

One other comment: I used Lallezyme EX as opposed to EX-V for the Barbera and it does a great job and I think there is less astringent tannin extraction. So going forward, for wine I want to drink at 2-4 years old, I'm using the EX. If I'm thinking something has staying power, I'll continue the EX-V but if 2019 Syrah is any indication it does make for a tannin bomb that will take awhile to mellow out.32CA15F2-05B9-4C82-83C0-C2B1F0FBFCB5.jpeg
 
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Booty Juice

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Believe it or not, there are still grapes for sale up in the Foothills...
Yes they are, in both El Dorado and Placer counties - I am picking up 250 lbs of some beautiful looking Malbec fruit tomorrow here in San Luis Obispo county. This season has produced some great fruit.
 

AaronSC

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I'm very tempted to get more fruit since so much is out there that's going to rot on the vine, but I have already taken in almost 2 tons of strays and it's getting into crazy territory for a home winemaker. My original plan was 800lbs and I'm now up to 3,800lbs...
 

Booty Juice

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Hahaha I planned on 1,000lbs....ended up with 2,000. Too much beautiful fruit I couldn't pass up.

The best thing I did this year: Whole berry fermentation, started naturally, minimally augmented (because I'm chicken), and soft punch downs. Very happy with the results.
 

CDrew

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And to complete the thought-racked the Rose off the sludge today. It's basically dry but still fizzy. I got less than I had hoped and have 11 gallons (1 x 6 and 1 x 5) of cleanish wine. But here is the surprise: granny smith is in the house! Very, very strong taste of malic acid. I am going to put it through MLF and then will adjust acid levels and pH later. Great color.

Still fermenting a bit but tastes dry.

Again I was using CO2 to push the wine from one container to the other. Sanitary fittings are really great.

8C30E08C-2D75-4CD7-B52E-48489E706513.jpeg
 
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CDrew

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I'm very tempted to get more fruit since so much is out there that's going to rot on the vine, but I have already taken in almost 2 tons of strays and it's getting into crazy territory for a home winemaker. My original plan was 800lbs and I'm now up to 3,800lbs...
Ha-I hear you but how much can you really drink. The grapes this year have been uniformly great. Really looking forward to 3 years from now and drinking the wine. This would be/is a good time to make some Rose that you can drink in March or April.
 

Ajmassa

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And to complete the thought-racked the Rose off the sludge today. It's basically dry but still fizzy. I got less than I had hoped and have 11 gallons (1 x 6 and 1 x 5) of cleanish wine. But here is the surprise: granny smith is in the house! Very, very strong taste of malic acid. I am going to put it through MLF and then will adjust acid levels and pH later. Great color.

Still fermenting a bit but tastes dry.

Again I was using CO2 to push the wine from one container to the other. Sanitary fittings are really great.

View attachment 67081
looks great. And I like your plan of inducing MLF then adjusting later avoiding lysozyme and fining. Although I think I’m gonna use my rosè as an excuse to get a filter setup regardless of lysozyme. (Btw I never realized lysozyme specifically calls for fining before bottling).
And I assume that’s StarSan bubbles in the receiving carboy in the pic right? The foam is what turned me away from using it. Fully aware it’s safe and whatnot. I don’t “fear the foam”. I just didn’t like it lol.

Been a helluva 2020 season over there! Everything looks and sounds like it going great.
 

CDrew

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looks great. And I like your plan of inducing MLF then adjusting later avoiding lysozyme and fining. Although I think I’m gonna use my rosè as an excuse to get a filter setup regardless of lysozyme. (Btw I never realized lysozyme specifically calls for fining before bottling).
And I assume that’s StarSan bubbles in the receiving carboy in the pic right? The foam is what turned me away from using it. Fully aware it’s safe and whatnot. I don’t “fear the foam”. I just didn’t like it lol.

Been a helluva 2020 season over there! Everything looks and sounds like it going great.
You are correct about the StarSan bubbles. I let the carboys drain for at least 30 minutes. The bubbles are a non thing for me. It's never been an issue in 4 years. I think the foam is good, and not a bad thing, It's a tiny amount of phosphoric acid, which is nothing in the grand scheme.

Today I was filling carboys, and it was pushing out the StarSan bubbles, which I figured was a good thing.
 

buzi

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You guys are killing me! I am going to take two months off next year and I am coming to california to "hang out." I plan to come back to illinois with a 18 wheeler, a black trans am, a nice moustache and a load of high quality grapes! Keep those pix coming!
 

winemaker81

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Ha-I hear you but how much can you really drink.
Actually quite a bit. Not that it's a good thing, but you asked. ;)

I LOVE fermenting stuff. I love the smell of fermentation. There are so many things I want to make, but managing storage and the question, "am I make far too much to drink?" are problems.
 

Chuck E

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You guys are killing me! I am going to take two months off next year and I am coming to california to "hang out." I plan to come back to illinois with a 18 wheeler, a black trans am, a nice moustache and a load of high quality grapes! Keep those pix coming!
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
THIS! x 1000
 

CDrew

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Yes they are, in both El Dorado and Placer counties - I am picking up 250 lbs of some beautiful looking Malbec fruit tomorrow here in San Luis Obispo county. This season has produced some great fruit.
I'm very tempted to get more fruit since so much is out there that's going to rot on the vine, but I have already taken in almost 2 tons of strays and it's getting into crazy territory for a home winemaker. My original plan was 800lbs and I'm now up to 3,800lbs...
Hahaha I planned on 1,000lbs....ended up with 2,000. Too much beautiful fruit I couldn't pass up.

The best thing I did this year: Whole berry fermentation, started naturally, minimally augmented (because I'm chicken), and soft punch downs. Very happy with the results.
You guys are killing me! I am going to take two months off next year and I am coming to california to "hang out." I plan to come back to illinois with a 18 wheeler, a black trans am, a nice moustache and a load of high quality grapes! Keep those pix coming!


You know, I still have 60 gallons of unused wine storage.........:d

But actually, despite the news of how bad things are in Napa and Sonoma, everywhere else has had an ideal year. Amador county is saying this is one of the best years in memory. And it still hasn't rained since May or so, the weather is ideal, and they have not picked all the grapes, so @buzi load up the screaming chicken, and fire up your CB. There is still time.
 

franc1969

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Oh, how I wish I lived a bit closer. The fruit and wine look great this year, sad the wineries aren't using it. We'd take it in seconds here on the east coast, but this isn't the fruit being shipped to us.
 

CDrew

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I just ordered from Wine Grapes Direct at @crushday 's recommendation 2 pails of Sauvignon Blanc and 1 pail of Semillion. Going to do a blended fermentation and will use Lysozyme at the end to prevent MLF. Shipping is expensive, almost worth a road trip to Portland!

I'm also going to use another Renaissance yeast-Allegro- which is a white wine yeast but with H2S preventing genes. I had to buy 500gm of it, so I'll use it next year too on Rose and more white wine projects. I was going to try TR-313 but Lodi wine labs does not carry that one.

Here is some info:


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CDrew

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So two of my three buckets of Wine grapes direct arrived today. Tracking says the other is in Sacramento, but why they didn't deliver, I don't know. The boxes arrived pretty beat up. with holes and obviously wet (not grape juice). Mylar bubble packing and temp of the buckets on arrival is 37F. So that's fine. It needs to warm to 60F or so anyway, so it's fine with me. Once I get the third bucket tomorrow, I'll start to figure it out.

Lots of condensation between the Bubble wrap and cardboard, which soaks and destroys the cardboard. Next time I order, I'm asking for the better packaging with styrofoam and an outer box. (that's how they send further). But so far, the experience was favorable from Wine Grapes Direct. Very good communication, 2 day shipping from Portland to Sacramento. Now it's down to the quality of the juice.

This may work out really well, because the garage is holding 60F pretty steadily which would be a good fermentation temp. I'm thinking the first 1/2 of fermentation will be in the buckets, then will mix and ferment the second half in a 15.5 gallon keg. Anyone have different advice?

Anyway, I'd rather pay $0.50/pound (or free) of red grapes than $3/pound for frozen white grapes but the wife wants some homemade white wine and so here we are.

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CDrew

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The package is beat to snot, but the contents are good. Call it a win!

The wife wants you to make wine??? DO NOT argue! Run with it! ;)
It took her a few years to warm up to it. She really liked the 2019 Rose I made and so from there it was all about making some Sauvignon Blanc. I missed the 2020 SB harvest because I was away in Alaska. so frozen buckets is the next best thing. I like starting with actual grapes. This is an anomaly, but I'm hoping for a good result and spousal approval. We'll see. I'm interested in learning about cold fermentations and how white wines work. Starting small, but in 2021, may get serious about it because I like white wines too.
 

mainshipfred

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It took her a few years to warm up to it. She really liked the 2019 Rose I made and so from there it was all about making some Sauvignon Blanc. I missed the 2020 SB harvest because I was away in Alaska. so frozen buckets is the next best thing. I like starting with actual grapes. This is an anomaly, but I'm hoping for a good result and spousal approval. We'll see. I'm interested in learning about cold fermentations and how white wines work. Starting small, but in 2021, may get serious about it because I like white wines too.
Although grape whites are much more expensive than juice buckets and the process of extracting the juice is similar I still enjoy making them from grapes.
 

CDrew

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Up at 0430 to make a yeast starter and get my white wine going before going to work. Notice how dark it is outside! Unfortunately of my 3 pail shipment only 2 arrived, but they were at 60F the magic time to go. So GoFerm + water + Allegro + 120ml juice and a stir plate and it's all set. FedEx sent my other pail to SLC for some reason and by the time it gets here, I doubt it will still be good, such are the perils of shipping. Definitely driving to Portland next year if I miss the white grape harvest again.


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