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geek

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Helping a friend who’s making some wine the “right” way this time.
I went to his house last night and the PH on the two batches are:

Cabernet ~3.65
Barbera blend ~3.35

Wine finished alcoholic fermentation and pressed, waiting to rack tonight or tomorrow to then pitch VP41.

I told him I’d leave it as is and pitch the Malo bacteria tonight.
What you think?

Also, he could only get Acti-ML and will use it to hydrate the bacteria before pitching. However he couldn’t get Opti Malo Plus.
Thoughts about not using the Opti Malo Plus nutrient ?
 

Boatboy24

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VP41 is good down to pH 3.4, IIRC. He may struggle with the Barbera.

Regarding the lack of Opti-Malo: you've got to work with the tools you have. Not much can be done about it at this point, so I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.
 

Johnd

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Jim and AJ, in my opinion, are both right. The tech data does say that VP 41 is good down to 3.2, but the lower pH stress, combined with an alcohol content probably over 12% (or higher) increases the stress. My wines below the 3.4 / 3.5 range, with ABV over 12%, with MLB pitched after AF have been super slow.

Were these my wines, I'd roll with the Cab as is, but try to get the Barbera up a bit. If these two wines have already been pressed and racked off of the gross lees, get the Opti-Malo as soon as possible and feed the MLB. Keep your temps up above 70F, stir occasionally to keep the bacteria suspended, make sure the carboys are well topped up.
 

geek

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Thanks guy.
Yes, I remember the VP41 is tolerant down to 3.2 or so, the Barbera at ~3.35 is just a tad lower than what I'd like it to be (as John implied). I'd be moving that a tiny bit to 3.40 if it was my wine, but I don't want to mess with this too much, but at the same time it may need just a tiny bit of pot bicarbonate to bring the Barbera closer to ~3.40

This friend is a son of a Portuguese and they're used to the 'old' way in which they add or use nothing to the wine making process, not even yeast. They used a manual crusher they have which does not de-stem, he told me they tried to remove as many stems as possible by hand, but looking at one of the bins that he has not press the wine yet, I saw tons of stems..!! :(

So hoping his wine comes up pretty good.
 

Ajmassa

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Sometimes I think about trying some grapes old style. My family thinks I'm insane with how I'm doing things now. But excited for the results.
I didn't mean to disagree at all, because I don't. I was just sharing the spec's on VP-41
And with a ph near the threshold, I'd probably feel comfortable with just proper feeding of nutrients. But without opti malo, I agree it's seems like a better bet to adjust up a hair.
 

ceeaton

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Thanks guy.
Yes, I remember the VP41 is tolerant down to 3.2 or so, the Barbera at ~3.35 is just a tad lower than what I'd like it to be (as John implied). I'd be moving that a tiny bit to 3.40 if it was my wine, but I don't want to mess with this too much, but at the same time it may need just a tiny bit of pot bicarbonate to bring the Barbera closer to ~3.40
If he has issues with the VP41 (which I doubt he will) I recently used CH35 on a Chardonel batch (ph 3.21) and got lazy and used it on my Dornfelder batch (pH 3.6 - fermented as the same time as the Chardonel) and it worked fine for the red batch (recommended for whites more than reds, but morewine.com states it will work fine for reds). Morewine.com sez it will work at a pH down to 3.0 with a SO2 level up to 50 ppm.

https://morewinemaking.com/products/dry-malolactic-bacteria-viniflora-ch35.html
 

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