Other do I still need to degas if the wine is already very clear?

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beer007

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Hi I am new to wine making and this forum has been helpful.

I made a batch(23L) from a Chardonnay wine kit, but I did not fully follow the instructions, and did not add all those stabilizing and clearing stuff, ie, no Potassium Metabisulphite, no Kieselsol, no Potassium Sorbate, and no Chitosan. I made two batches before but followed the instrutions and used all stuff provided, but noticed some folks saying to minimize chemicals so decided to give it a try.

I started on Nov 21 2021 using fastferment 7.9G fermentor(initial SG 1.090), and racked into a 6Gallon carboy on Dec 12(after checking SG 0.992), shaked the carboy to degas at that time, and I could see air bubbles coming out. Topped up to the neck and attached airlock.

Now I think the wine is very clear and I can see through easily. My question is:
- do I still need to rack it again and degas?
- do I need to add any of those stuff which were provided but I did not use?
- is it fine to bottle now since the wine is pretty clear?

Thanks for any advice.

I took some pictures:
Bottom:

bottom.jpg

Middle:
middle.jpg

Top:
top.jpg
 
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Definitely the K Meta imo, unless you are going for a sulfite free wine. It will protect you. I stopped using Sorbate as it’s not needed if you ferment to dry and as long as you don’t back sweeten the wine. Kieselsol and Chitosan are optional and based upon your pics I wouldn’t worry about them at this point since it appears to have cleared well without. You may not need to degas if you splash rack one more time prior to bottling. I would rack once more, add 1/4 tsp K Meta, let it clear out for a couple days then bottle
 

sour_grapes

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Your wine is clear enough! I would not add the chitosan/kieselsol. I never add sorbate, unless you intend to backsweeten.

As @She’sgonnakillme says, though, I would add the k-meta.

You don't show the bottom of the carboy. If there is sediment there, I would rack to get rid of that, add the k-meta, and let it settle before bottling.

As for degassing, you will have to taste it and judge if you like it the way it is, or need to degas.
 

my wine

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Degassing and clearing are 2 different things. Your wine seems very clear so no need for the clarifiers. But you may not see the bubbles of gas even after 2 months. As Sour Grapes suggested, taste it then judge for yourself. I've had corks pop from bottled wine and a gallon jug just plain broke from the pressure.
 

Rice_Guy

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welcome to wine making talk
@She’sgonnakillme gave good answers,
* gas will make a wine “sparkle” or “spritz” which some companies do for balancing flavor with sweeter wines, you are dry so the flavor might be less tart/ bitter/ seltzer if you degas. It is not unusual to find home wine with some bubbles, and these bubbles will be more obvious in warm weather as in summer,,, if you like the flavor that is really all that matters, this is a cosmetic issue.
* metabisulphite is essential for long shelf life, without it you will develop off flavors, ex acetaldehyde which I describe as a burn in the back of the throat. If you add any sugar it needs K sorbate to keep live yeast from growing/ making gas/ dropping out as solids
* “pretty clear” wine will have some solids settle out, this is cosmetic and one answer is to be careful when you pour the bottom of a bottle, ,, “very clear” wine may have some solids but the guy drinking the bottom is the only that would notice it. ,,,, ie this is low risk
Hi I am new to wine making . . .
Now I think the wine is very clear and I can see through easily. My question is:
- do I still need to rack it again and degas?
- do I need to add any of those stuff which were provided but I did not use?
- is it fine to bottle now since the wine is pretty clear?
 

beer007

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Wow, thanks for all the response and comments, I really appreciate it.
I will try to taste and see if I need to degas, but not sure if I will be able to tase it. :p
I prefer dry wine so will not backswwaten. But as suggested I will rack again since there is sediment at the bottom, and add K-meta.
 

Sailor323

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Since I always ferment to dry, I never use sorbate. I do use meta at bottling to protect the wine. As for degassing, I have skipped it many times since I splash rack a few times prior to bottling. A couple of times, when I bottled early the wine retained some CO2 and I got bubbles when I uncorked the wine--not quite tintillant but definitely enough to push the tasting cork out of the bottle.
 
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@beer007, the kit wine process -- ferment, degas, clarify -- is designed specifically to enable a beginning winemaker bottle the wine in 4 to 8 weeks. If the instructions are followed, the wine will be clear and will not drop sediment in the bottle.

Your wine is perfectly fine -- there is no problem. But, you have to make a decision regarding how to proceed.

Since you omitted important steps in the process, you cannot follow the kit bottling schedule. You will likely have sediment in the bottle if you bottle now.

CO2 in suspension holds particles in suspension with it -- it can prevent fining agents from working properly. While wine degasses on its own over time, manual degassing (stirring for up to 3 minutes) kick-starts the process, causing the wine to emit a lot of CO2 during the process, and to continue outgassing over the following days. Note: you are NOT eliminating all the CO2 by stirring, you're just kickstarting the process.

The fining agents, typically kieselsol & chitosan, cause all fine particles to drop quickly. This is a huge factor in being able to bottle in 4 to 8 weeks. While your wine looks clear now, that doesn't mean it really is (as @Rice_Guy said). It may take another 1 to 4 months for the fine particles to settle out.

I see 2 choices:

1. If you want to bottle now, degas and add the fining agents. If you do this, you can bottle within 2 weeks.

2. Treat the wine as a fresh juice wine, and let it bulk age another 2 to 6 months to clear on its own, then bottle.

Either way, unless you or anyone you know are allergic or sensitive to sulfite, add the K-meta. K-meta is a preservative and anti-oxidant. IME wines without sulfite have a shortened shelf life. And I agree -- since the wine is dry and you are not backsweetening, skip the sorbate as it provides no benefit.

As you proceed in your winemaking endeavors, think about why people make certain choices. The answer to "why?" will help you make your own choices.
 

beer007

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Thanks again!
I will rack it again and let it bulk age for several months and then bottle.
Before this batch I would just bottle when it is clear (carefully not to stir the sediment) to save the hassle of racking and topping up but it seems to be the right way to rack again.
 

beer007

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I just checked the K-meta from the kit and it is 4g powder, it should be more than 1/4 tsp? I guess it is ok to add them all?
Thanks.
 
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I just checked the K-meta from the kit and it is 4g powder, it should be more than 1/4 tsp? I guess it is ok to add them all?
Kits typically include a single dose of K-meta, so it's probably about 1/4 tsp.

Is this a combined pack, containing sorbate and K-meta? If so, you may want to skip it and use plain K-meta.

Some folks test pH and SO2 and calculate the amount of K-meta to add. Others of us add 1/4 tsp per 5 or 6 gallons at each racking after fermentation, and every 3 months during bulk aging. If you plan to bottle on kit schedule, what's in the kit is fine. If you are going to bulk age, you need to purchase a bag of K-meta.
 

beer007

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Kits typically include a single dose of K-meta, so it's probably about 1/4 tsp.

Is this a combined pack, containing sorbate and K-meta? If so, you may want to skip it and use plain K-meta.

Some folks test pH and SO2 and calculate the amount of K-meta to add. Others of us add 1/4 tsp per 5 or 6 gallons at each racking after fermentation, and every 3 months during bulk aging. If you plan to bottle on kit schedule, what's in the kit is fine. If you are going to bulk age, you need to purchase a bag of K-meta.

Thanks. It is separate packs for those, ie, Potassium Metabisulphite(K-meta, 4g powder), Kieselsol(12.5ml liquid), Potassium Sorbate(5.5g powder), and Chitosan75ml liquid).
I have purchased a bag of K-meta while trying some custom recipe(sweet potato wine) so I will follow your suggestions to add it.
 

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