Fall Wine Plans! A Storm is brewing....

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The cold Pinot noir has been wonderful as far as scheduling goes. The cooler temperature insures that the nutrient scheduling has been really easy to keep up with. I added my last nutrient addition at 1.032 instead of at 1.027 as I had planned. I also added .3g/L Booster Rouge at the same time. I predict that I will be pressing this wine this weekend.
Last night I racked the hot pinot noir since it had over an inch of thick sediment. The gravity had dropped down to .992 or slightly below. I then topped off with sanitized marbles and around 32-48 ounces of cold pinot must that was below 1.030. I also replaced the oak that had been in the pinot with .75 ounces of oak that had been used during the primary along with .75 ounces of fresh Hungarian to bring the oak load back up to 1.5 ounces after I had to make an oak sacrifice to the bath tub during cleaning.

The hot chard is clearing quite nicely and has maybe a cm of sediment on the bottom. I will feel comfortable doing sur lie with that when the time comes.
I racked and topped off my cold fermented pinot noir with 6 liters of Robert Mondavi Pinot nior (2011) to bring the volume back up to 5 gallons. I feel like I have lost my basis for comparison between the two batches due to the very large top off I had to perform.. However, I always intended to blend the two batches in the end.

One thing I would like to note is that my Pinot noir is showing some very interesting chocolate notes early on. It is still very young and will need quite a bit of aging.. But I find that promising.

I set out the cold chard to finish unthawing before I ferment it.
nope, I did however use 3 oz of Hungarian oak cubes in each primary which I then reduced down to 1.5 oz in each 5 gallon secondary. I am using a mixture of American and French oak spirals and stix for the chard in secondary though.
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So, the chard that is to be fermented cold. I checked the gravity it sat up right around 1.082 so I added around 940 grams of sugar to hopefully bring the six gallon volume up to 1.096. The acid tested at .4g/L thus I hopefully added enough to sit me at .625 g/l. I also added 7 grams of opti white to the batch.

To initiate fermentation I used some of the yeast cake from the previous chard. The must is not sitting in the chiller at 60F.
Just checked the gravity of the chard this morning. It was sitting nice and pretty at 1.096-1.098... Hopefully we will be seeing some fermentation within a day or two.
Added in 19 grams fermaid O at 1.055.. Chard is moving along nice and steady. Thus far I have manged to hit all my nutrient addition targets.
Meant to add last addition at 1.025, however the gravity sneaked past me and is now at 1.014... Adding 19 grams fermaid O and 7 grams of optiwhite.
Finally got all the wines into secondary once the pinot mead finished fermenting. We added 5 grams of opti mallo plus to each 6 gallon carboy and as well as the correct portion of MBR 31.

Since I was quite cheerful about the end of what seems to be a promising wine season I decided to have a few pictures taken.


king me 2.jpg

So, just a brief little update.

The cold fermented pinot noir smells great and in my opinion has this odd chocolaty dark fruit kind of smell going on with it. I have not tasted it yet, since it is still way too early to tell.

The warm fermented Pinot Noir has this rather amazing smokey chocolate smell going on with it with some kind of fruitiness on it that I can not quite put my finger on. I think when the times comes blending these guys together will be quite fun. I can see bubbles and clearly smell the results of ML fermentation.

The warm fermented chard at first had this kind of odd smell to it, perhaps a slight rubbery kind of smell to it, but I have since decided it is something else. I was kind of worried it was the start of HS2 formation from bottonage and I considered racking off the lees , but I have since decided not to do that. I will take a wait and see approach for now.

The cool fermented chard smells quite good actually, perhaps because I like the smell of ML so much. It is fruiter than the other and I could detect no off smells. Def has smells rather creamy.

I am still undergoing bottonage on all the wines, I stir the lees up by swirling the carboys around once a week. I will keep doing this until I start getting some off definite off smells in the chard.

On a side note, I purchased a pump and some redulees, that should help make working with my future grape wine fermentations much easier...
I'm very happy that your season is going as planned! I had a bottle of Sangiovese left over from racking, although I could have done the smart thing and saved it for topping off, nope....I drank it! If it is any indication of what this wine will become, I am happy as a pig in mud!
Oh yeah! No regrets over here in this camp! I hope I have enough money left over so that I can make some more wine next year! How old is your Sangiovese right now?

BTW, does anyone here know about bottonage and HS2 formation, ie some things that are clear indicators that I should take it off the lees? I have never done this before so I am not quite sure if it smells young or if it is the beginning of HS2.
Seth, The sangiovese is only three months old, it has a long way to go, but I couldn't pass up the chance to try it out, and I wasn't disappointed! My schedule is tentatively:
3 more months clearing, I'll rack possibly once more then into the barrels it goes for at least 6 months, at that point I plan on racking back to carboys for 4 to 6 months, making any adjustments necessary, at this point it should more like a Chianti. I plan on taking some and blending some of my Cabernet (Yakima Valley), this is another outstanding wine that is still very young, and Merlot that a buddy made last year, to make a Super Tuscan.
Hmm sounds very interesting. Will your blended wines give you enough ABV for a Super Tuscan? If I recall correctly Super Tuscan is a slightly sweet strongish Italian red correct? How many gallons do you have going?
Thanks, I am just glad these guys are moving along as well as they are. I am sure you can still get some frozen pinot noir juice and maybe if you are lucky some frozen must too.

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