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pittspur

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I am currently bulk aging a WE World Vineyard Washington Riesling. I snuck a taste of it and liked it, gave some to the boss and she was surprised how dry it was – sg after fermentation was .994, after adding f-pack, I believe it is back up to 1.000. I am considering trying to backsweeten maybe 1-2 gallons of it (mostly just to see how it differs). From searching the forum, I read that for 1 gallon of wine, 8 oz of sugar will raise the sg around 0.018. I am going to base my calcs off of that (so maybe add 3-4oz of sugar to 1 gallon). What level do my sulfites need to be to guarantee that it won’t start fermenting? Should I be shooting for 50mg/L? Would I be better off backsweetening with wine conditioner instead of sugar? Also, I saw that after backsweetening, you should let sit for another week to make sure it is clear. Since I am only backsweetening a portion of the wine, am I ok just bottling right away? Thanks for the help.
-Dave
 

Tom

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I would make some simple syrup and add that and mix it with your degasser tool. TASTE, TASTE, TASTE go by YOURS not someones else's. Adding sugar may not dissolve as readily as simple syrup.
If you added Sorbate from the kit you should be OK. but, 1-2 teaspoons extra will also work for a 6 gallon batch. Less if you are doing less. I find the kits do not add 1/2 tsp per gal in their packages but something lower. Theirs may be stronger though.
 
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MN-winer

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One other suggestion, since I'm speaking from experience with sweetening Rieslings. Go light on the additions. I was surprised that when I tested before bottling it tasted just right, and now 4 months later after bottling its like sugar water - very sweet.

I would get it just to the point of being tolerable from a sugar standpoint and then stop!!!

Thats my two cents. I feel like we ruined a nice riesling by sweetening too much.
 

Tom

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One other suggestion, since I'm speaking from experience with sweetening Rieslings. Go light on the additions. I was surprised that when I tested before bottling it tasted just right, and now 4 months later after bottling its like sugar water - very sweet.

I would get it just to the point of being tolerable from a sugar standpoint and then stop!!!

Thats my two cents. I feel like we ruined a nice riesling by sweetening too much.
How did you backsweeten? I'm thinking you added sugar not simple syrup.
 

NSwiner

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Do you have another wine that you like that you could compare the SG levels on maybe aim for roughly the the same reading . But I know I have read here that we should go easy on the sweetener because it will get sweeter with age so maybe instead of going to 1.010 maybe try it at 1.080 for your first try for example . Since you're doing a small batch to start with ( good idea I think ) it will give you a better idea of where you like your wine . Also go by taste like Tom said for sure .I was just thinking did you just put this to bulk age & it's young then it won't be as smooth and sweet as it will be when it's aged some .
 

Tom

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so maybe instead of going to 1.010 maybe try it at 1.080 for your first try for example . .
OPPS !!!
NO U have a typo.
I beleive you mean 1.008 !
Stii use simple syrup and add slowly to your taste. Once you like it write down the gravity for next time ..
 

NSwiner

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lol I sure did do a TYPO . Yes I meant 1.008 .
 

Julie

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Hi Dave,

Try to get it to around 1.005, I think you will like that level of sweetness. Reisling is probably my favorite wines (well Elderberry is right there with it) and I have sweetend some to 1.010 and I felt it was a tad too sweet.
 

pittspur

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Thanks all, I think I'll try to get to 1.005. That sounds like a good number, as I really don't want it too sweet, but with 30 bottles coming, I'd just like to experiment a bit with a few bottles. Are there any issues with bottling immediately after backsweetening? Is 50mg/L the SO2 level I should be shooting for? Thanks.
 

Julie

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I always wait about 3 weeks after backsweetening to make sure fermentation does not start back up
 

Leanne

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Use your senses. Taste, smell, look. Make a syrup and add very slowly as you taste. Patience is the key here. Let it sit. Let the flavours develop. Don't be in a rush to bottle. I know we all feel proud when we see our first bottle of any wine but it can be a huge mistake to rush this.
 

pittspur

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I'm not trying to rush to bottle. My problem is that I was thinking that I only want to backsweeten 1-2 gallons of the 6 gallon batch. I don't have a 1 or 2 gal carboy to allow it to sit. That's why I was wondering if I could just backsweeten and immediately bottle.
 

ffemt128

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I'm not trying to rush to bottle. My problem is that I was thinking that I only want to backsweeten 1-2 gallons of the 6 gallon batch. I don't have a 1 or 2 gal carboy to allow it to sit. That's why I was wondering if I could just backsweeten and immediately bottle.
Pick up a gallon jug, they always come in handy. Or better yet, pick up a gallon of wine, drink the wine then use the bottle. Should be a 5 1/2 or 6 stopper.
 

Tom

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I'm not trying to rush to bottle. My problem is that I was thinking that I only want to backsweeten 1-2 gallons of the 6 gallon batch. I don't have a 1 or 2 gal carboy to allow it to sit. That's why I was wondering if I could just backsweeten and immediately bottle.
Yes you can mix the simple syrup in the bottling bucket. Make sure its mixed well and that you have sorbated it before adding
 

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