Bench Trials, Taste Testing Blackberry Port

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Aug 9, 2023
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Hello, everybody šŸ‘‹
I've got a blackberry port in bulk aging, fortified (brandy + Everclear) and backsweetened (invert syrup + frozen fruit 'f-pack') 1 month ago, <2 months since pitching.
I under-shot the sweetness, and added no acid, with the intention of doing a further adjustment after the flavors had settled/melded/mellowed some.

I would love any advice on this, but specifically curious on your opinions about:
1) How long should I let it mellow before adjusting again? There's seemingly a balance where the longer I leave it the better I will understand what it needs, but if I do make more additions I want to leave time for those to integrate as the wine ages.
2) Suggested protocol? I have some ideas involving making various concoctions at 1/200th scale, and comparing them pair-wise randomly. There is plenty of alcohol, so my variables are really only sweetness and acidity.

I suspect the as-is wine may be the best, but I don't want to bias the trials by only having sweeter, more acidic alternatives. Is there a way to build in some "negative values" to my sweetness/acid scales? I was thinking maybe adding more alcohol may make the port drier, reducing perceived sweetness? Is it completely ridiculous to make a less acidic control using a tiny amount of alkali, like baking soda? Don't really want to do any kind of proper de-acidification protocol on 100ml of test wine...

This started off as a "throwaway" project to get me back into the craft after moving country, so unfortunately I didn't take an SG reading, and therefore have no numbers - going on taste alone šŸ™ƒ

Thanks in advance for your wisdom!
-- Yeasty Boy
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