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prickles

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Okay, again appreciating the help.

I now have a WE Aussie Shiraz/cab in 2ndary. I wanted to check my plans before the next steps:

After fermentation stops, you add metabisulfate and sorbate, stir.
Add isinglass, stir.

I will have everything I need to do the vacuum racking method as in wade's pic. Do you do the vacuum racking right away or do you wait the 8 days the directions say? (I am planning not to use the whip to degas.) I'm guessing, rack right away, but rack everything in the carboy, as there will be nothing on the bottom because of the stirring?

Then after that, it recommends racking 8 days later. I would again vacuum rack, this time trying not to disturb the sediment?

Then it says leave for 2-3 weeks before bottling, and add more metabisulfate for aging over 6 months. My plan is to bulk age this for 6 months or so. Do I add the k-meta now or later? Also, if I am not bottling at this time, do I need to rack it a third time to pull out more sediment?

More questions:
If I want to run it through a minijet, when do I do that?
I believe Lurker says he adds k-meta everytime he racks. Do I do that if I follow this plan?, and 1/4 tspn each time?
I believe Wade recommended adding more k-meta every 3-4 months in bulk aging?
Do I need a k-meta test kit?
when adding k-meta, you stir forcefully or gently?

thanks again! I am sure I will have more questions, but these answers will help me greatly!
 

Tom

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Okay, again appreciating the help.

I now have a WE Aussie Shiraz/cab in 2ndary. I wanted to check my plans before the next steps:

After fermentation stops, you add metabisulfate and sorbate, stir.
Add isinglass, stir.

I will have everything I need to do the vacuum racking method as in wade's pic. Do you do the vacuum racking right away or do you wait the 8 days the directions say? (I am planning not to use the whip to degas.) I'm guessing, rack right away, but rack everything in the carboy, as there will be nothing on the bottom because of the stirring?

Then after that, it recommends racking 8 days later. I would again vacuum rack, this time trying not to disturb the sediment?

Then it says leave for 2-3 weeks before bottling, and add more metabisulfate for aging over 6 months. My plan is to bulk age this for 6 months or so. Do I add the k-meta now or later? Also, if I am not bottling at this time, do I need to rack it a third time to pull out more sediment?

More questions:
If I want to run it through a minijet, when do I do that?
I believe Lurker says he adds k-meta everytime he racks. Do I do that if I follow this plan?, and 1/4 tspn each time?
I believe Wade recommended adding more k-meta every 3-4 months in bulk aging?
Do I need a k-meta test kit?
when adding k-meta, you stir forcefully or gently?

thanks again! I am sure I will have more questions, but these answers will help me greatly!
OK slow down.
I would degas now as it will help in clearing
Degas after you rack again just to make sure..
Running thru a filter is after your wine is clear and aged
If aging you want to add 1/4tsp every 90 days not each time you rack. Then again Lurker is talking about aging and he racks every 90 days.
You rack again if you still see sediment.
You say you will bulk age for 6 months so add meta after 3 months and when you bottle.

Remember filtering will "polish" your wine not clear it up.
 

Wade E

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If its done fermenting I would dissolve the kmeta and the sorbate in a small amount of water and add that to the carboy I would be racking my wine on to. Once its all in there I would degas well. Once thats done I would then add the fining agent. I would let the fining agent work a week longer then stated to let it compact some and do so with the carboy tilted so that all the sediment falls to one side and then you rack off the other side letting you get more wine out clearer thus transferring less sediment over. I sulfite my wines about every 4 months myself and do so using a S02 test kit but must say that 4 month intervals are pretty close to be exactly right on. I strongly recommend going past the bottling time and bulk aging for at least three months and then add another 1/4 tsp of meta and bottle then at least.
 

prickles

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Thanks for the helpful replies!

I don't plan on doing any of this until next weekend, just trying to get the steps down before hand!

Wade, you mention racking and then degassing. Doesn't your vacuum racking method do a good job degassing in the transfer process? Do you still need to degas after that?

When exactly does the "bulk aging" process begin? If I were to want to age for 6 months, does it begin when you first add the kmeta and sorbate or does it begin when you rack the sediment out about a month later?

Tom, how do I keep the wine from getting too much contact with o2 if I am racking it several times? Does the kmeta do that? If I follow the plan I think I am on, i will rack next weekend, then again in a month. If I were to wait for 3 months before doing the racking to get the sediment out, would that be bad?

thanks again for your help!!
 

Tom

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When exactly does the "bulk aging" process begin? If I were to want to age for 6 months, does it begin when you first add the kmeta and sorbate or does it begin when you rack the sediment out about a month later?

Tom, how do I keep the wine from getting too much contact with o2 if I am racking it several times? Does the kmeta do that? If I follow the plan I think I am on, i will rack next weekend, then again in a month. If I were to wait for 3 months before doing the racking to get the sediment out, would that be bad?


Bulk aging starts when you added all the finnings (meta,sorbate)
Meta helps keep out the O2 because of the sulfite. Thats why you want to keep it up during aging. Also, keep the airlock filled.
As far as the sediment. Alot of winemakers rack to much (often) to get clear wine. Once you rack from the secondary there is no problem letting it settle. You want a good solid layer so that when you rack you dont disturb. During aging is a good time to add the oak in your reds.
 

prickles

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Bulk aging starts when you added all the finnings (meta,sorbate)
Meta helps keep out the O2 because of the sulfite. Thats why you want to keep it up during aging. Also, keep the airlock filled.
As far as the sediment. Alot of winemakers rack to much (often) to get clear wine. Once you rack from the secondary there is no problem letting it settle. You want a good solid layer so that when you rack you dont disturb. During aging is a good time to add the oak in your reds.


okay, very helpful!

You mention add the oak during aging...The kit says to add it during primary? I assume most of it is gone by the time you get to secondary since it says to leave the sediment?
 

Tom

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Yes they do. But its in powder form and I feel WE red kits need help. So do most here. Adding chips is a slower extraction than powder. The powder that comes in the kit almost dissolves in the primary. Kits are made for fast to bottle. I feel you need to age for better wine and better kits / quality.
Think about it. Wineries age their wine for 1-2 years to get good wine. Yet kits can be readt for bottle in 4-6 weeks.
 

Wade E

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No, the vacuum racking when I do does little to degas my wine and is actually very gentle on my wine which is another reason I like it.
 

prickles

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Yes they do. But its in powder form and I feel WE red kits need help. So do most here. Adding chips is a slower extraction than powder.
So are you saying add chips to bulk aging? If so, leave them there for the whole bulk aging time?

Wade, now I'm really confused, I thought in the thread about "degassing with vacuum" that was the point of your racking technique. If it's not, how does one use a vacuum to degas?
 

Tom

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Now thats a personal question. Add a cup or 2 to the wine. Check the "Taste" in 3-4 weeks. Ck again in 3-4 weeks till you like it. The country and the toast level has alot to do as well.
Confused yet? LOL. Welcome to wine making as its not an exact science.
 

prickles

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Logically, I would think I should not add anything to the WE kits the first time, until I know if I want to change them? Is this just "a waste of a kit" when more oak is always better?

I think I know what oak tastes like in a chardonnay, but not in a red. Got a quick description?
 

Wade E

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Most degas with a vacuum pump by inserting a fitting into the bung and create a vacuum in the carboy. This is done by not having any other holes in the bung or anywhere else for the pressure to get lost and once the vacuum gets up to about 15" the co2 is then really sucked out of suspension so be careful, let it stay low like around 10 - 13 for a few minutes then very gradually turn it up. I like to do this until I can get it up to about 18" and then max it quick and shut it off fast and this will then let it hold a vacuum if the wine is degassed enough, If it can hold around 15-16 for about 1/2 an hour thats good enough for me, others just let it run for awhile like 1/2 an hour set around 15" once they have gotten up there safely, only do this if you have a reservoir canister in place and with temps of around 75* so that the C02 can come out of suspension.
 

prickles

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thanks! What sort of fitting should I put in my glass carboy? would a standard rubber cork with hole with a piece of racking tube through it do the trick? I ask these silly questions because my first kit turned out okay, but very gassy, after doing triple the whipping with a drill recommended by the kit. I know that's low according to threads I have read, but I don't want the same problem a 2nd time and the vacuum thing seems to be better?
 

arcticsid

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Prickles. If you think thee directions are complicated. Don't even try to put together one of those assemble it yourself furniture kits!!!

I helped my buddy assemble an outdoor basketball hoop thing-a-mah-jig.

When we were all done, we had like 6 extra parts. We scratched our heads for an hour. Read and re-read the instructions. At the last minute, we read th fine print at the end of the assembly manaul. It said, "extra hardware has been included!"

Would have been nice to know that in the begning!!!!:)
 

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