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Wade E

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Welcome all wine makers! When you need an answer on wine making please be very specific as to what the recipe is, temp, starting gravity and gravity now, amount of sulfites added, Brand and exact kit being made, in other words provide us with as much info as you can otherwise we will have to answer your question with one of these questions as we dont want to give you the wrong answer. Doing this will most likely give us enough info to properly diagnose whats going on with your wine. We so want to help you get your batch of wine finished and done right because we are all one big wine making family!
 

bargeric

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Homemade wine

My homemade wine came out with a rotten egg smell. What can be done if anything to fix this?
 

winemaker_3352

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Could be hydrogen sulfide in your wine.

The possible causes of hydrogen sulfide contamination are:
  • Too much sulfites, usually the result of grapes being dusted with too much sulfur during the growing season
  • Lack of proper nutrients (nitrogen, yeast hulls) during fermentation
  • Yeast combining with various forms of sulfur (some folks swear that Red Star Montrachet yeast is notorious for causing H2S, but we've never experienced this ourselves)
  • Bacterial contamination due to poor sanitation technique

H2S contamination can be prevented if you:
  • Add proper amounts of sulfites to wine
  • If making wine from scratch (not from a kit), add a proper amount of yeast nutrient prior to pitching yeast (Fermax, DAP, etc.)
  • Use proper yeast for the wine you're making, and make sure it has not passed the expiration date or gotten too hot in storage.
  • Maintain sanitary conditions for your equipment and must (especially prior to pitching yeast)

I have read that you can do the steps below to rid the rotten egg smell:
  • First, measure the amount of sulfites in your wine using a test kit
  • If deficient, treat wine to 50 PPM sulfites
  • Rack and splash - rack your wine two or three times, being sure to splash it around a lot as the wine goes from vessel to vessel. The aeration (introduction of oxygen) will help counteract the H2S.
  • Put the airlock back on and wait a couple of hours or overnight. If it still smells like rotten eggs, keep going...
  • Get a piece of copper (i.e. copper flashing) from a home supply store.
  • Pour the wine over the copper so that it runs over the surface of the metal into a receiving vessel.
  • Fine or filter the wine.
  • By now, the sulfur smell should at least be greatly diminished. If you can still detect a smell (we've heard that humans can detect H2S in quantities as low as 2 parts per billion), you might try to use an egg white or a gelatin fining agent and fine your wine. Add normal amounts recommended by the manufacturer.
  • Filter wine through a tight filter.
  • When all else fails you can use copper sulfate on your wine. A 0.1% solution added at about 0.5 ml per gallon, will give you about 0.3 PPM copper sulfate in your wine. BE CAREFUL. Remember, this stuff is poisonous. DO NOT EXCEED 0.5 PPM of copper.
  • Fine your wine with a bentonite or Sparkolloid fining agent. This will remove all the copper sulfate.
  • Filter wine if necessary to remove fining agent.
 

niwilkes

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Wine Conditioners, what is it?

Background: I'm a newbie to the home wine making world. Just bottled our first batch--a Winexpert Kit: Muller Thurgau (sort of a Reisling). It's been fun!

Question: My (limited) understanding of a wine conditioner is it's something added to the wine just prior to bottling to somewhat alter the flavor of the wine. The Wine Maker's Toy Store folks, among others, sell a product called "Wine Conditioner". What is it chemically? In what situations would you use it?
 

Tom

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Wine conditioner will also back sweeten the wine it also has sorbate. BUT, I/we feel it leaves a cough medicine taste. If you plan on back sweetening make simple syrup.
Why are you looking into this?
 

Wade E

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It is inverted sugar along with sorbate and its just enough sorbate to prevent the product itself from fermenting so if you add this to a wine please use the recommended amout of additional sorbate per gallon.
 

Minnesotamaker

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When stabilizing a wine before sweetening, remember to also add sulfite at the same time you add the sorbate. They work in concert to prevent a new fermentation.
 

guinness5

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Restarting Fermentation AFTER adding sorbate...ugh

Without going into too many details of how (and why) I got here, I am wondering if there is any hope for this spiced apple wine....

Originally planned to be a sparkling cider, I fermented it to about 8% alcohol. I added an appropriate amount of sorbate to this batch to prepare for bottling. For various reasons, I decided that the sparkling cider was a bad idea at this point and thought a spiced wine would be better. I added cloves and cinnamon and it really has a wonderful flavor. BUT to be really much better and balanced, I want to increase the alcohol level to about 12%-14%. I read a few places that even after adding sorbate, you can restart fermentation if you start it working before you pitch it. (The sorbate prevents existing yeast from working, but new yeast already fermenting could overpower the effects of the sorbate).

So, I sweetened the batch and added yeast/nutrient/etc - starting it for a while before adding it to the wine. Nothing happened. Tried with various yeasts (some baking, some wine) and never really felt like I got the yeast working well before adding it.

Am I destined for a poor/mediocre spiced apple wine or is there a nuance to restarting fermentation? Should I keep trying?

Eric
State College, PA
 

Runningwolf

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Your best bet might be to make a trip to MD. and get some Everclear and add to it. Hope you're not making this in a dorm room? LOL
 

djrockinsteve

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You are going to have to blend it if you want to do that. Sorbate prevents yeasts from breeding. The recommended dosage (1/2 teaspoon per gallon) is actually on the high side. You would have to add a lot of juice to dilute that sorbate down.

Don't dump it though. Let it age a year.
 

thecrabappler

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Question

Hey new to the site. Got my grandma's crab apple wine recipe. Pretty simple. Cut the apples, put it in a bucket with some gin, sugar. let sit for 6 weeks and enjoy before mass! (yes she actually put that in there lol!) Recently I read something online about pectin enzyme and campden tablets? Is that something that HAS to be used? Or can I still make and drink it the way granny used to?
 

thecrabappler

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Your best bet might be to make a trip to MD. and get some Everclear and add to it. Hope you're not making this in a dorm room? LOL
What is everclear and what does it do? Would I add to add it and wait a certain period of time. Wan't to make sure I do it right.
 

thecrabappler

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You are going to have to blend it if you want to do that. Sorbate prevents yeasts from breeding. The recommended dosage (1/2 teaspoon per gallon) is actually on the high side. You would have to add a lot of juice to dilute that sorbate down.

Don't dump it though. Let it age a year.
So then add the sorbate, and add juice (my question mark doesn't seem to be working). what juice. wouldn't that take away from the original flavor. And wait a year! Must I wait. Or was that wait a year if I don't add anything.
 

BobSestili

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Had this happen to me this year. Splashed it around, racked a few times. Got 90% of smell out. How much copper sulfate would you use in a 60 gal barrel?
 

Cannew

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Quote: What is everclear and what does it do?

Everclear is pure grain alcohol, with little or no taste. Will spike up your wine and is usually added to the last racking and allowed to sit for at least a month to blend with the wine.
 

sully

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says to stir my must every 24hr. will that disrupt my yeast??? it just started bubbling. what is the purpose of stirring must???? is it nessacry??
 

djrockinsteve

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You stir to introduce oxygen to the yeast, bring the sugar to the yeast and keep fruit, if any wet. It also dissipates CO2
 

sully

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so i just made a strawberry wine that turned out very dry so i am wondering the best method to sweeten. i do not like artificial sweeteners so am wondering if the non sugar wine sweeteners will taste as good as using real sugar. not sure what is the best easiest way.
 

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