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Tnuscan

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I'm going to be making some Chambourcin this fall. I've been told this one tends to be a little acidic. I need lots of info on your experiences, thoughts, opinions and suggestions. All help will be greatly appreciated!!

Thanks in advance
 
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JohnT

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Although I have never made chambourcin, I have tasted plenty of them in the finger lakes. When you get this one right, the results can be spectacular.
 

Tnuscan

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I've heard that Chambourcin grows better in the Northern areas above us. I've been trying to find the best Chambourcin wine to order so I could sample. If anyone cares to share some of their favorites, I'd be happy to order them from the internet suppliers and give them a try.

This grape and Cynthiana is grown a lot in Tennessee. The Chambourcin is loaded this year and no one is cluster thinning. I'm hoping this doesn't pull the brix down and make them more acidic. Most are focusing on the yield and not the quality. I hope I'm wrong and the brix and acid are in the sweet spot.

Shipping costs and/or personal expenses of traveling up that way to buy the grapes I want and back, the time and exhaustion from travel, then the process of starting them, helped with the decision of buying local for my first crush.
 

cmason1957

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I make about 400-500 lbs of Chambourcin most years. It can be a bit acidic. Maybe I should say outside the fans considered normal. But, it can make a wonderful wine. I have used Rc212 in the past, but this year I used Bm4x4, I think that will be what I use again. I always do malolactic fermentation and sometimes cold stabilization.
 

Tnuscan

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Thanks @cmason1957 I am planning on splitting this into several batches so I will definitely try the BM 4x4 on one.
 

Brigitte

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what yeast do is recommended for chambourcin?
 

Tnuscan

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Hi! @Brigitte I'm going to use BM4x4 and maybe RC 212 this will be my first crush so I'm gathering info myself. I've made many kits and fruit wines but never fresh grapes. Well not on a larger scale like I'm planning. I guess what I really mean is Crush, MLF, Age. I'm planning around 400lbs Cynthiana and 800lbs Chambourcin this fall.
 
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Brigitte

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Tnuscan that Sounds like fun! Thanks for the info. I found the RC 212 mentioned somewhere but not the BM 4x4. I will look into that. I ran across an blog where someone said MT was the way to go. We are jumping in with grapes soon. Should have done some kits first like you but we don't usually do the obvious. Lol good luck !! Keep me posted !
 

Tnuscan

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Tnuscan that Sounds like fun! Thanks for the info. I found the RC 212 mentioned somewhere but not the BM 4x4. I will look into that. I ran across an blog where someone said MT was the way to go. We are jumping in with grapes soon. Should have done some kits first like you but we don't usually do the obvious. Lol good luck !! Keep me posted !
I think your making the right move with the grapes.

Thanks for the advice, I will give this a try, and I wish the best your way!
 

Tnuscan

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I ended up splitting this batch into 3 using MT, BM 4x4, RC 212. MLB used was VP 41.

The BM 4x4 and RC 212 had more acceptable TA's, the MT however has is high.
I wish I had used carbonate to raise the acids in fermentation. I was focusing on the mlf needing 3.2 pH and thought the pH would rise more. So I've been adding POT. Bicarb. to lower the TA and hopfully raise the pH a tad.

Next season I will start fermentation with a pH around 3.4 to 3.5.

BM 4x4 3.39 pH TA 5.5 g/L

RC 212 3.50 pH TA 6.9 g/L

MT 3.32 pH TA 9.3 g/L
 

Tnuscan

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How does it taste?
Awesome, The one with the high TA is a little too acidic for me but I'll dial it in. It smells awesome, it's young but it is on the way to being a really nice wine.

The Cynthiana, Oh Baby!!! It's hit the mark and it's on its way to being there.
 

Tnuscan

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After K-bicarb additions and cold stabilizating the Chambourcin was moved from a 3.30 pH , and TA of 10.0 g/L to a pH of 3.39 and TA of 5.5 g/L .

I will let it sit for a while and rest. Still dialing in the other two batches, may even return to this on to bring the TA to 5.0 g/L. Still undecided...? This is the batch #2 with the BM 4x4
 

Tnuscan

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@cmason1957 Did you do any Chambourcin, how did it come in if so?
 

cmason1957

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I did do something life 450 lbs of Chambourcin this year. It is late at night. I'll try to remember to look at the numbers I have down in the wine room. I will probably be taking it tomorrow.

I did make 6 gallons of Chambourcin Rose and bottle it about a month ago. It was very fruity and tasty. No Mlf and no backsweetening for that.
 

Tnuscan

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I did do something life 450 lbs of Chambourcin this year. It is late at night. I'll try to remember to look at the numbers I have down in the wine room. I will probably be taking it tomorrow.

I did make 6 gallons of Chambourcin Rose and bottle it about a month ago. It was very fruity and tasty. No Mlf and no backsweetening for that.


That's fine, I was really just wondering about the condition, and how it was progressing at this stage.
 

cmason1957

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Well, after spending last night fighting with my router and cable modem, I think all is well again today.

I racked my Chambourcin off the oak yesterday and (of course) had to have a small taste. It is coming right along. I used about 4 ounces of Medium+ American Oak and it was left in for about 10 weeks. I think all will be well. I did look at my ph numbers, I started about 3.2, then added some bicarbonate to raise it a bit pre-fermentation to 3.4. Fermentation went normally (BM4x4 yeast), added MLB after pressing and settling. MLB was either VP41 or CH16, I didn't write down which one, but that is what the place I buy them from sells and I have had equally good luck with both.

MLF was done in 2 months, waited another bit and added SO2 and then oak. I know many add oak during MLF, but for whatever reason, I try to do one thing at a time. I then cold stabilized, something I have always done more for aesthetic reasons than to get the ph/ta dialed right in. I may add just a bit of tartaric acid to give it a little bit more kick. I will let my wife's taste and mine be the guide on that.
 

DocDRB

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Hi I am new to chambourcin and fresh grapes in general. Picked 100# here in southern Illinois. Grower recommended lalvin 71b-1122. The Brix is about 21 - added 2# sugar. It's a bit tart but I don't have a way to measure pH and acid. He never adjusts and has had good success. How important is malolactic I understand it doesn't work well at low pH?
 

Johnd

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Hi I am new to chambourcin and fresh grapes in general. Picked 100# here in southern Illinois. Grower recommended lalvin 71b-1122. The Brix is about 21 - added 2# sugar. It's a bit tart but I don't have a way to measure pH and acid. He never adjusts and has had good success. How important is malolactic I understand it doesn't work well at low pH?
MLB are stressed at lower pH's, but he's recommended 71B, which will metabolize some of your malic acid during alcoholic fermentation.
 

Stressbaby

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Coincidentally, as a thank you for the Chambourcin they let me pick last year (and the Vignoles they allowed me to pick this year) tonight I took a couple of bottles of their 2016 Chambourcin to the vineyard folks down the road from me. Montrachet, pH adjusted to 3.55 preferment, MLF, oak cubes. Based on the multiple text messages I think they liked it.

IMG_0639.JPG
 

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