First time with grapes

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Sep 14, 2009
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Hi folks. I am making wine from Zinn grapes for the first time. Everything is going well. I have finished primary ferm and pressed into secondary. Of course there was not an even 5Gal, it was more like 7.5. So what do I do with the extra? I can rack into 1Gal jugs now, and use some of it for topping off after taking samples. When you top off from a smaller jug, do you just leave the air space in there and put it in the fridge? Also, the last gallon of wine came from putting some real pressure on the must (to dry it out and make disposal of the pomace easier) so I kept it separate with the intention of throwing it out. I am looking at it and can't get myself to pour it down the drain. Do you guys think I should let it finish and bottle it and just leave it for years to let the tannins mellow ?
I wouldnt dump that extra gallon of the harder pressed unless its really nasty then I probably would. I would surely use the rest for topping up and the one that isnt quite full you can put into a magnum and just get a smaller bung (#3) with airlock. I have left a gallon with more space in it like you said though and just upped the sulfite on that bottle.
Thanks. That is great advice. I'll taste it when I get home and make a judgement call. Picking up Syrah tomorrow. I love living this close to Napa.
After the Zin went into the carboy for secondary, it was still bubbling and kind of sweet. The bubbling has slowed down to every 10-15 seconds after 3 weeks total fermentation time. Can I determine if the slow bubbling is due to malolactic or is it just residual CO2?
Did you act MLB? There is a test to tell if ypu are done with MLF and MLF can start on its own if not added. Try degassing the wine to see if its C02. Lysozyme will stop MLF if you need it.
I didn't add any MLB (is that the starter?) Just pressed it directly into the carboy and put a lock on it.
To degass should I rack it off of the lees first? Or all-in-all should I just leave-it-the-F-alone? :)
Since these were from grapes then pressing probably did most of the degassing so just leave it.
BTW, how long will my hands be stained? I've been punching down by hand so I can tell where the hot spots are in the must. No matter how much I wash them they look dirty ;)
If you keep doing it by hand Im guessing a few days after you stop. I pressed over the weekend and have to scoop it out of my buckets into the press by hand and my rigt hand was purple for a day and half.

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