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gordonm

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read a couple threads on the subject but not quite sure. I have a blend of Lacrosse/St. Pipen that has reached sg .998 and appears to be finished fermenting. I would like to sweeten it a little now. I understand that I want to add k-meta to prevent oxidation and then Potassium sorbate to stop any more fermenting. Then after 24 hr. add sugar to get the sweetness I want. Is that correct? thanks, gordon
 

wineforfun

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I sweeten right after adding sorbate but 24hrs. would be fine too.
Sounds like you have it figured out.

Just don't sweeten too much to start as you can always add more but can't take it out.
 

bkisel

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I mostly do my back sweetening just as you say but there are times that I'll to do it just before bottling. There are folks who will always wait and do there back sweetening just before bottling.
 

salcoco

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you should wait until the wine has settled and cleared. as it has not completed fermenting I would wait at least two -three months before even considering sweetening. the wine will go through many taste phases before it is settled , all will cause a change in the end taste profile if you do not wait.
 

wineforfun

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I guess I should have added that I do as @salcoco does, in letting it settle, clear, etc. before backsweetening. My above post reflects after this is done.
 

cimbaliw

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As a general rule make sure that the sorbate you use is no more than 6 months old as it may loose efficacy. Trust me on this one. Having been bitten, I always wait at least 24 hours before adding sugar regardless of type. As far as clear v. not clear, I've never had a problem. I would recommend back sweetening to 1.003-1.005, give it a week or two and reassess.
 

drainsurgeon

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Someone here made a good recommendation not long ago. Add your Sorbate. Wait a week. Back sweeten. Wait a week. If clear and no bubbles, bottle.
 

Scooter68

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Easiest way to figure backsweetening for me is to work with 8oz of wine (one cup) Since I use a 2-1 simple syrup I start with 1/8 - 1/4 oz of that - stir and check. If that's too much you can double the sample to 2 cups and check that. Once you have that correct then figure the amount needed for your entire batch. (16 cups per gallon of course)

Example if 1/4 oz for 1 cup (8oz) achieved desired sweetness. I have to the backsweeten the remainder of 1 gallon batch so - 15 x 1/4 oz = 3 3/4 oz of simple syrup.

And like the others said I normally add my 'final' K-meta (Via Campden tablet crushed) and sorbate at least one day ahead.

Next day or within the next week I do my backsweetening.

I prefer to do the backsweetening within a week so that I don't lose to much of my K-Meta effect before Bottling.

I like to wait at least 1 week after Backsweetening before bottling to let any last bit of sediment drop.

When in any doubt I filter just before bottling.
 

Floandgary

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Go with the more experienced advice. Unless you plan on drinking your wine ASAP, allow it to settle, clear, age a bit before sweetening. Wine backsweetened early tends to taste too sweet after aging a while. Besides I'd be willing to bet that as time goes on, even .998 might seem sweet to you.:sh
 

Scooter68

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Sweetness is on the tongue of the taster.

Rule of I have found is up to about:
.990 - .998 is a Dry wine
.999 -1.002 Semi-Sweet / Semi Dry
1.003 and above Sweet / Dessert wine.

I've got a sweet Black Currant wine that has a SG of 1.005 and it is most definitely sweet and strong at about 15.5 ABV My Friends call it a sneaky wine. Anything above 1.005 is going to have be going up against a very very tart wine flavor or else it would be very sweet - like a cordial or Liqueur

Bottom line is what does the consumer think? If that's you, then adjust to your liking. If you are bottling for a competition or 'sale.' You'd best look for some info from the judging rules or Professional Wine Makers.

As with so much on here there as few hard fast rules that everyone agrees upon.
 

joshayogi

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When you back sweeten - how do you do it if you are using sugar? I assume you shouldn't just add the sugar right in, correct? Do you pull out some wine, mix the sugar, and then add that back into the main batch? Has anyone seen clumpy crystals settle a few weeks after adding sugar?
 

Scooter68

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I use a simple syrup. (e.g. 2 cups sugar to 1 cup HOT water) You are not adding that much volume anyway. I haven't had to add more than 4 - 5 ozs/gallon to any of my fruit wines to kick them up to 1.002 to 1.005. Never had any clumps or crystals if the sugar is properly dissolved before adding to the wine. Let the solution cool to a warm temp at least before adding.
 

hounddawg

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many good points of views , all rock solid each in their own way,
i make a pear/apple blend that i love, an i do mean love, i rack every 3 months using my AI1 vacuum pump, at the one year point i wait 6 months then rack , now evergy rack i use vacuum pump it helps pull your gases out with out introducing oxygen, then after another 6 months i rack for the last time, my other wines don't take 1/2 this long but pear is a bear, i forgot i run every rack and even bottle thru a filter with my vacuumpump. at the first from 3 months to 1 year it is ok even slightly good but at age 2 it is divine, ok i cant explain in short like the rest i ramble to say the least, but above all else go slowly and take lots of time patience is your greatest claim to fame. never hurry, quick wine can be pretty good but aged wine is always better, an befor i let you be, i like my country wines with high octane, i use EC-1118 an K1V-1116, both will get you around 18%ABV or around 34 to 36 proof, i do all my back sweetening with pure granular honey, powdered honey is mainly 70 to 90% cane sugar, liquid don't really help either, but a high grade dry granular honey is only honey and 1 chemical that stops the honey from clumping together, you can drink 1 glass of my wines taste no alcohol and wake up rested, some how and on here are tons f people with grey matter can tell you how it works i just know it works, 2 glasses and you don't need to be driving, i use mine instead of sleeping pills,
DAWG
 

wineforfun

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Sweetness is on the tongue of the taster.

Rule of I have found is up to about:
.990 - .998 is a Dry wine
.999 -1.002 Semi-Sweet / Semi Dry
1.003 and above Sweet / Dessert wine.
I am assuming you are a dry wine drinker by those numbers.

I am a dry red wine drinker. However, I do enjoy a good fruit wine. Your numbers are on the low side from my experience.
Dry numbers, right on, as dry is dry.
Semi-sweet I would put at 1.005 - 1.012, depending on fruit/grape.
Sweet I would put at 1.014 - 1.020, depending on fruit/grape.
Dessert I would put at 1.020 - 1.028, depending on style/type.

My wife is a sweet wine drinker and 1.003 would pucker her lips. The higher end of my semi-sweet numbers is about all she can tolerate, and that depends on the fruit.

As your first sentence states though, "Sweetness is on the tongue of the taster."
 

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