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H2S 2018 Lodi Cab

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rgonzales1981

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Hello, my first time posting here so forgive me if I miss something. Currently working with a batch of California cab sauvignon, ran into an H2S problem. Splash racked it 2 times and after fumigating the house with sulfur and letting it stand for a week did have noticeable improvement but still heavy H2S I did bench trials with ascorbic and CuSO4 and CuSo4 alone in samples and decided to go with CuSO4 0.3ppm addition, after the initial addition did not match my bench trials I reran my bench trials and decided may have mixed the initial samples and decided to add ascorbic 20ppm. After 3-4 days I did have minor improvement, I decided to go thru it again with first adding ascorbic 40ppm and then adding the CuSO4 0.3ppm 1.35ml in the correct order has been 2 days now and still H2S. I wonder if I should have doubled my dose of CuSO4 on the second round thru? Should I risk splash racking again? I did develop some mercaptan smell on the initial addition of the the CuSO4 alone which the ascorbic did take care of. It has been 8 days since my first addition. My choices at this time are to splash rack #3, wait and give it more time and stir it up, add a third dose of copper 0.3ppm 1.35ml, add wood to try and absorb some off smell (least effective in my mind), try and add a fining agent to the wine. Any thoughts or suggestions?
 

Johnd

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Hello, my first time posting here so forgive me if I miss something. Currently working with a batch of California cab sauvignon, ran into an H2S problem. Splash racked it 2 times and after fumigating the house with sulfur and letting it stand for a week did have noticeable improvement but still heavy H2S I did bench trials with ascorbic and CuSO4 and CuSo4 alone in samples and decided to go with CuSO4 0.3ppm addition, after the initial addition did not match my bench trials I reran my bench trials and decided may have mixed the initial samples and decided to add ascorbic 20ppm. After 3-4 days I did have minor improvement, I decided to go thru it again with first adding ascorbic 40ppm and then adding the CuSO4 0.3ppm 1.35ml in the correct order has been 2 days now and still H2S. I wonder if I should have doubled my dose of CuSO4 on the second round thru? Should I risk splash racking again? I did develop some mercaptan smell on the initial addition of the the CuSO4 alone which the ascorbic did take care of. It has been 8 days since my first addition. My choices at this time are to splash rack #3, wait and give it more time and stir it up, add a third dose of copper 0.3ppm 1.35ml, add wood to try and absorb some off smell (least effective in my mind), try and add a fining agent to the wine. Any thoughts or suggestions?
My first option (after quite a few splash rackings) would have been to get some Reduless ( https://morewinemaking.com/products/reduless.html ) and follow the instructions contained therein. It's the best first big move to make if splash racking alone doesn't alleviate the problem. Can't say if that's the best option for you now with the other measures you have taken, but it's what I would try..............
 

rgonzales1981

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My first option (after quite a few splash rackings) would have been to get some Reduless ( https://morewinemaking.com/products/reduless.html ) and follow the instructions contained therein. It's the best first big move to make if splash racking alone doesn't alleviate the problem. Can't say if that's the best option for you now with the other measures you have taken, but it's what I would try..............
Thanks for the info, I'm going to order some to give it a try, I actually have half my batch untreated, I am waiting for MLF to end on it, will try the reduless on it. Be a nice comparison to make.
 

jgmillr1

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I can offer a few suggestions that may help:
1) Don't ever splash rack. This is a superficial band-aid that does not solve your H2S woes and will oxidize your wine.
2) Copper sulfate works fine when dosed sufficiently and given time. You should be targeting a 0.5ppm copper addition to the wine with each addition (this is also the TTB legal limit for commercial wines, FYI). Dose your wine with the 0.5ppm addition, stir it in and give it a day to work. Smell again the next day and re-dose until the odor is gone. I haven't worked with the reduless treatment, so can't attest to its efficacy.
3) Treat the H2S ASAP or it may evolve into disulfide compounds after a few months that will be harder to remove. This is why wines sometimes get the rebound H2S later. Patience and proper copper sulfate additions will eventually resolve your H2S.
4) Happy yeast (lower fermentation temp + yeast nutrients) will not produce H2S. Also timely rackings off gross lees will reduce off odors.

Lodi cabs are fantastic. Good luck and cheers!
 

Stressbaby

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Reduless offers something like 0.02ppm at recommended doses, far less than standard CuSO4 additions.
 

Stressbaby

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I can offer a few suggestions that may help:
1) Don't ever splash rack. This is a superficial band-aid that does not solve your H2S woes and will oxidize your wine.
2) Copper sulfate works fine when dosed sufficiently and given time. You should be targeting a 0.5ppm copper addition to the wine with each addition (this is also the TTB legal limit for commercial wines, FYI). Dose your wine with the 0.5ppm addition, stir it in and give it a day to work. Smell again the next day and re-dose until the odor is gone. I haven't worked with the reduless treatment, so can't attest to its efficacy.
3) Treat the H2S ASAP or it may evolve into disulfide compounds after a few months that will be harder to remove. This is why wines sometimes get the rebound H2S later. Patience and proper copper sulfate additions will eventually resolve your H2S.
4) Happy yeast (lower fermentation temp + yeast nutrients) will not produce H2S. Also timely rackings off gross lees will reduce off odors.
Question: if 0.5ppm is the legal limit, shouldn't 0.5ppm be the maximum addition?
 

stickman

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The .5ppm limit for the US is the residual copper allowed, if you add .5ppm it is assumed that a portion of this reacts with the sulfides and precipitates out leaving the wine below the limit. Unfortunately without testing, you really don't know what's left in the wine.
 

NorCal

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If you look into redulees, you will find that it contains a small dose of copper, which I believe is the active ingredient. I would go back to your bench trials and find the minimal amount of copper needed where the smell goes away. I wouldn’t want any residue copper (or any other heavy metals) in my wine that I’d serve to others.
 

rgonzales1981

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I feel comfortable with the additions of CuSO4 that I have added however the results were not as promising as my bench trials. I do like that reduless has less CuSO4 in it, not sure how well it works but I am willing to give it a try. I have my batch split into two carboys and will continue with CuSO4 treatment in one and Reduless in the other and make sure to post my results for others to have info on.
 

rgonzales1981

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I'm curious to know the what yeast was used, and the schedule of nutrient additions
Used redstar premier rouge, historically not a big fan of red star however my first 2 choices were sold out at my wine supply place and they didn't carry my 3rd option. Added yeast nutrient at 25% and at 75% completion. Intend to use UV43 next year and stack nutrients with fermaid products after this headache. Prior to this had worked with only home grown north american grapes and used lalvin 1118 or 1116 with no yeast nutrients and no H2S issues. This was my first go a Cali grapes. I have fermented several batches of Cali and Chile bucket juice with no issues, but I believe they typically make sure these are well balanced before they arrive.
 

pgentile

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I feel comfortable with the additions of CuSO4 that I have added however the results were not as promising as my bench trials. I do like that reduless has less CuSO4 in it, not sure how well it works but I am willing to give it a try. I have my batch split into two carboys and will continue with CuSO4 treatment in one and Reduless in the other and make sure to post my results for others to have info on.
I had a malbec in spring of 2017 that had low pH that developed H2S, took two Reduless applications to get rid of it. It worked, wine was never great, drinkable but just so. I was amazed at how bad the odor was and how it eliminated it.
 

rgonzales1981

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I had a malbec in spring of 2017 that had low pH that developed H2S, took two Reduless applications to get rid of it. It worked, wine was never great, drinkable but just so. I was amazed at how bad the odor was and how it eliminated it.
Ordered my reduless, shipping was more than the product! Out of curiosity do you think the process of removing the H2S with reduless affected the wine taste or was it just that after having the H2S it was never great? Reason I ask is that my wine minus the smell seems to have good body and tannins and I tend to wonder how these will be affected with all of the H2S removal process
 

pgentile

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Ordered my reduless, shipping was more than the product! Out of curiosity do you think the process of removing the H2S with reduless affected the wine taste or was it just that after having the H2S it was never great? Reason I ask is that my wine minus the smell seems to have good body and tannins and I tend to wonder how these will be affected with all of the H2S removal process
I was thinking about that last night. I'm not sure. Once the wine was pressed and racked off gross lees it didn't behave like all other wines I've made. There was no degassing and MLF wouldn't start. Got MLF to start after reduless but never finished. Wine lacked body, never turned dark and looked more like a sangiovese than a malbec. Also I couldn't get past the odor to taste prior to Reduless knocking it out, so no idea how it tasted before the treatment.

pH was 3.15 pre and post-crush, I left on the gross lees too long and then splashed racked several times trying to get the stink out before reduless. Should have adjusted pH prior to crush and I learned my lesson about gross lees.
 

sdelli

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Unfortunatly most of us have experienced this problem at sometime in our winemaking. The results usually produce some drinkable wine at best.... Never good wine.
 
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