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QuiQuog

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What are these bubbles in my DB? I followed the directions to the letter. This is 3 days after back sweetening with 3/4 cups per gallon. I’m suspecting it’s just co2. Any thoughts?
 

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BigDaveK

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I read (here) the shelf life of sorbate is a year-ish.
Good example of why we wait to bottle after back sweetening.

Checked my sorbate. LD Carlson brand, no date of any kind on the package.
 
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QuiQuog

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Sounds like you didn't use sorbate first. And now you have renewed ferment.
I used sorbate, but...
Was your sorbate old?
I don't think so? I'm pretty sure I used the new and tossed the old. Something to check when I get home. If the new is unopened then we have an answer.
Good example of why we wait to bottle after back sweetening.
I was was wondering what the reason was.
 
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I don't think so? I'm pretty sure I used the new and tossed the old. Something to check when I get home. If the new is unopened then we have an answer.
What was the SG after backsweetening, and what is it now? If they are the same, it's not fermentation.

A while back we discussed sorbate shelf life, and from various sources I found the shelf life most commonly reported as "6 to 12 months, if properly stored at reasonable temperature with no air and away from light". Another source said up to 2 years.

I purchase sorbate in small quantities, as I don't backsweeten much, and write the purchase date on the package. The packets that come with kits are also dated. Since I have no idea how long the packets sat in a warehouse or on a LHBS shelf, after 12 months or so, I toss 'em. The sorbate may be good, or not, but if I ensure I'm using fresh I won't have a mess to clean up. So far I've not had a problem.
 

QuiQuog

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What was the SG after backsweetening, and what is it now? If they are the same, it's not fermentation.
That's a good question. I'll check that tonight also. If it's not fermentation, then what might it be?

Would it be beneficial to put this outside for a while? My garage temperature will be in the 40-50f range for the next week
 

QuiQuog

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What was the SG after backsweetening, and what is it now? If they are the same, it's not fermentation
It just occurred to me that I didn't take a reading after I backsweetened, I just did it to taste. But it turns out that I used the old sorbate, the new one is unopened. The old one is about 7 years old. I guess that means that, in effect, I added no sorbate. How do I proceed from here?
 
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That's a good question. I'll check that tonight also. If it's not fermentation, then what might it be?
Hopefully just excess CO2.

It just occurred to me that I didn't take a reading after I backsweetened, I just did it to taste. But it turns out that I used the old sorbate, the new one is unopened. The old one is about 7 years old. I guess that means that, in effect, I added no sorbate. How do I proceed from here?
On the plus side, you have learned to ALWAYS take a SG reading. ;)

I'd put the wine in the garage to stunt the ferment. After that, add fresh sorbate. It's possible to overdo the sorbate, and I have no idea what effect the old sorbate will have in addition to the new, e.g., is the old sorbate effectively nullified, or will the remaining ingredients add enough to the new to produce a problem (too much sorbate)?

You may need to add more sugar, depending on now much has been eaten.
 

QuiQuog

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I put it in the garage on Thursday and added sorbate. Brought it inside and let it warm up Friday night. So far so good. No bubbles. I'll let it sit for a week or 2, depending on when I need that carboy again. I'll find out then if the extra sorbate affected the flavor. Then again, I don't know what too much sorbate tastes like. Thank you everyone for your help.
 

QuiQuog

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Too sweet. I bottled my DB and now I feel it's too sweet. I had a 16 oz grolsch bottle that wouldn't fit into the carboy so I sweetened it separately and it was perfect. I really enjoyed it and think it's a great recipe, but what I bottled isn't what I know it can be. I'm thinking of making another batch and mixing to make it closer to what I want. The question I have before I do that is, what are the chances of oxidation from pouring the bottles back into a carboy and mixing the two batches?
 
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The question I have before I do that is, what are the chances of oxidation from pouring the bottles back into a carboy and mixing the two batches?
Essentially zero. Treat it as a racking and add k-meta. Avoid splashing too much while unbottling.
 

Huba Huba

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Noobie questions. If you ferment your DB to 9.5% - 10% alcohol then add, say 2 lbs/gal of fruit in the secondary, are you not diluting your ABV by nearly 20-25%?
Even supposing the fruit sg is 1.040 and fermentation starts again (does it do this?) and goes to completion won't it still decrease the ABV some, is this significant?
should you plan an little higher ABV to start with to compensate if you plan on adding fruit to the secondary?
 

G259

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Why? Why not ferment dry, then back-sweeten? Easy peasy.

Plan for 12-14%

DB 12%

If you add fruit, you're adding sugar, thus higher ABV
 
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Noobie questions. If you ferment your DB to 9.5% - 10% alcohol then add, say 2 lbs/gal of fruit in the secondary, are you not diluting your ABV by nearly 20-25%?
Even supposing the fruit sg is 1.040 and fermentation starts again (does it do this?) and goes to completion won't it still decrease the ABV some, is this significant?
should you plan an little higher ABV to start with to compensate if you plan on adding fruit to the secondary?
That's a good question. I figure dilution into my plans, as it can be significant, e.g., backsweetening 6 US gallons of Apple with 3 quarts apple juice reduces a 12% ABV wine to 10.7%. Diluting that wine with 6 quarts drops the ABV to 9.6%.

Starting with a higher ABV does make sense.
 

sour_grapes

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Why? Why not ferment dry, then back-sweeten? Easy peasy.

Plan for 12-14%

DB 12%

I agree with the above.

If you add fruit, you're adding sugar, thus higher ABV

But I disagree with this. If you add fruit, you are adding sugar AND water. As @Huba Huba said, the fruit is probably only 1.040 or so. Thus, the ABV will be lower than if you did not add fruit that subsequently fermented.
 

G259

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OK, I think I see, but I was never good at juggling either so . . .

edit. OK, so you're adding volume at a lower SG, so a lower total ABV, I get it.
 
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CheerfulHeart

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Blueberries Cranberries and Peaches oh my!
I was sorting the contents in my freezer and found 4 pounds blueberries, 3 pounds of peaches and about 1 1/2 pounds of cranberries. I also found a 16 ounce bottle of key lime juice in the pantry.
I'm thinking all this might be the makings for a batch of DB :D
Any thoughts on this combination? Will using both cranberries and citrus juice make it too acidic?
Thanks in advance!
CheerfulHeart
 

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