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Fix Stuck Alcohol Fermentation before or after MLF

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rbmorris

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The zinfandel grapes I bought from CA this year came in at 29.5 brix. I used ICV-D254 yeast with Go-Ferm and Ferm K. Fermentation stopped at just below 5 brix. I pressed off the skins after 20 days.

I want to put this through MLF. Not sure if I should get the wine through MLF before fixing the stuck AF or before. I plan to use lysozyme with the AF restart which can inhibit MLF.

Has anyone here had to deal with this? Any suggestions?
 

pgentile

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If you had fermented dry, at 29.5 brix, you'd have had around 18 %, I believe icv-254 has an alcohol tolerance of 16%. Stuck at 5 Brix might be as far as that yeast can go. There are a few that can go a little higher. But from other threads, with this situation, there hasn't been much success to get it to ferment those remaining sugars, including myself.

Others here might have some better insight, but a Brix that high should be adjusted prior to fermentation. If it where me I'd add the MLB and when it completes see where you are at then and how it tastes.
 

Ajmassa

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I just dealt with something similar using lysozyme. And morewine listed the different amounts to add for specific applications. Stopping MLF, restarting AF, delaying MLF, stabilizing MLF https://morewinemaking.com/products/lysozyme.html?site_id=5

I added 300 ppm for a restart since my MLF was essentially complete enough for my wine. As well as yeast hulls. Looks like 150 ppm is enough for the restart and also enough to delay MLF yet not prevent it later.

**Also morewine's approximation of 3tsp = 5grams was a pretty light. And it ended up being more like >4tsp for 5grams.
 
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Ajmassa

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If you had fermented dry, at 29.5 brix, you'd have had around 18 %, I believe icv-254 has an alcohol tolerance of 16%. Stuck at 5 Brix might be as far as that yeast can go. There are a few that can go a little higher. But from other threads, with this situation, there hasn't been much success to get it to ferment those remaining sugars, including myself.

Others here might have some better insight, but a Brix that high should be adjusted prior to fermentation. If it where me I'd add the MLB and when it completes see where you are at then and how it tastes.


Good catch. That wine is sitting over 14% abv right now
 

rbmorris

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thanks for the quick responses.

I should have adjusted the must prior to fermentation or at least used a higher alcohol tolerance yeast like EC1118 or KV1116.

I am leaning toward getting the wine through MLF first and then using one of the high alcohol yeasts to try to get as much sugar out it as possible. It's too sweet right now. If all else fails I will make a port of it.

I've made zin in the past but never with that amount of sugar.
 

Boatboy24

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At that ABV, you are going to struggle with MLF.
 

rbmorris

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I know the alcohol level is crazy high. I've had zin from California that was 17.3%. Not sure how they did it. Maybe they skipped it.

The TA isn't very high so I could skip Mlf although I would prefer to smooth it out a bit. It's simply too sweet to not finish AF or at least get it closer to 0.

I appreciate the feedback from all of you.
 

NorCal

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I dealt with a stuck, high brix, 60 gallons of Zin in 2014. Restarts were futile. What I ended up doing is starting a new batch, added sugar, watered back with nutrient. Once that was goin and dropped the brix down to 3, I would add to it from the mother batch. I kept doing this until all the original batch was now the new batch and I got it to go dry with the 1118.
 

pgentile

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I dealt with a stuck, high brix, 60 gallons of Zin in 2014. Restarts were futile. What I ended up doing is starting a new batch, added sugar, watered back with nutrient. Once that was goin and dropped the brix down to 3, I would add to it from the mother batch. I kept doing this until all the original batch was now the new batch and I got it to go dry with the 1118.[/QUOTE

I did something similar to this with 5gal high alcohol stuck blackberry and added to a malbec kit. Fermented dry.
 
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