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Help juice bucket I got already started fermenting

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Dabillskid

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I picked up two 5 gallon Regina Barolo pales of pressed juice. For some reason it was bubbling at the relief valve on the top. It was stored outside and it’s been in the 30’s in upstate NY and snowing so no way it could have started fermenting I thought. I just checked the spec gravity and it’s 1.02 and tastes like fermentation has started. There is no sweetness and it’s fizzy to the mouth but actually tastes pretty good. I’m bringing them to 70 degrees now and gave them a good stir. I’m not sure what yeast they use but should I just rack them to carboys already then take them down to below 1.0? I won’t know what the alcohol value will be now I guess. Was also wondering if I should put anymore yeast on it. I have lavin 212 I wanted to use for the Barolo. I plan to take these to my 10 gallon French oak after I oak my amarone. Thanks
 

Ajmassa

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Pretty common for Regina juice and I just dealt with similar. It’s said that there is no yeast added to em but they tend to go off on their own a lot. It’s safe to assume starting SG ~1.090 for the reds.
Personally I’d add that 212 and some nutrient right away leaving em in the buckets for all of fermentation and hope for the best since your already 2/3 thru.
They should still get to <1.000 with some tlc.
Normally you could add some sulphite to stall the fermentation and add your yeast 24 hrs later. But I’m not sure that’s wise to do at 1.020.
 

rustbucket

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I had a similar experience with a juice bucket pinot noir. The problem with natural yeast is that you have no idea what the characteristics of that yeast are. Immediately add the Lalvin RC212. Developed strains such as RC212 are very aggressive and will replace the native yeast in 24 hours, at least that was my experience when I added the Lalvin BM4X4 to the pinot noir.

My pinot noir didn't come out very good. It has aged 18 months in the bottle and it still is a fruit bomb with no complexity. I had hoped for a good pinot noir but now use it to make wine coolers for my wife, 50% wine and 50% ginger ale over ice. I have an aversion to throwing away wine batch disappointments so wine coolers are my fall back.
 

Julie

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You should call where you bought the juice from to see if it was inoculated with yeast. The place where I get my juice buckets use to inoculated them with Lavlin 1118.
 

Scooter68

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As Julie said - wold be nice to know what yeast they used for future reference and to see if they sell it without yeast added so you choose your own yeast and starting time/points.
 

Ajmassa

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It’s a Regina juice bucket. Lotta distributors for them up here in the northeast. My family has used em for as long as I can remember
They are shipped from Cali ‘as is’ with no commercial yeast added - they specify acid, ph, sugar, appropriate varietal blending for color and balance, but never yeast..apparently.
And none can be added afterwards because the lids are the type that require each perforation to be cut 1st.
The pressed grapes, I assume, 1st macerate at low temps before balanced, packed and shipped.
Oddly their website has a basic tutorial for making the juice bucket wine. And there’s no mention of adding yeast at all. Just stir, snap lid with airlock and bring up to 70° for fermentation to start.
My supplier has always supplied yeast packets at purchase. And will add a packet to purchase unless you specifically tell them not to.
With all that said I’m still not 100% they don’t add anything. Fairly confident but not positive.
IMG_6652.jpg
 

Dabillskid

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It’s a Regina juice bucket. Lotta distributors for them up here in the northeast. My family has used em for as long as I can remember
They are shipped from Cali ‘as is’ with no commercial yeast added - they specify acid, ph, sugar, appropriate varietal blending for color and balance, but never yeast..apparently.
And none can be added afterwards because the lids are the type that require each perforation to be cut 1st.
The pressed grapes, I assume, 1st macerate at low temps before balanced, packed and shipped.
Oddly their website has a basic tutorial for making the juice bucket wine. And there’s no mention of adding yeast at all. Just stir, snap lid with airlock and bring up to 70° for fermentation to start.
My supplier has always supplied yeast packets at purchase. And will add a packet to purchase unless you specifically tell them not to.
With all that said I’m still not 100% they don’t add anything. Fairly confident but not positive.
View attachment 44854

This is exactly how mine looked. Was bubbling from the relief valve. I got my amarone from them but it was from Italy and had no problems. I just added lavin 212 racked to a dominjohn with some yeast nutrient and it’s bubbling nicely. Only thing is I picked this up from one of my grandfathers friends and the dominjohn is 54 L! I’m going to quickly run to grab another 5 gallon pal to add to it. I’m guessing the oxygen in headspace won’t be as much of an issue now since it’s fermenting but becomes more of a issue after stabilization ? Thanks for the help everyone!
 

Ajmassa

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Your right about the headspace. And The demijohns work well for 3 buckets. But just note we typically let them ferment in the buckets separately and add them to Demi’s after. The buckets are 5.3 gal each, and with the sediment dropping out during fermentation is just about the perfect amount to fill the demi.
Combining to demi first will leave some leftover. And then losing more due to dropout will leave you shy of filled after racking off lees.
To avoid that you can leave that 3rd bucket ferment by itself. When all are finished you’ll first need to get the demi empty to clean out the gunk before adding all 3 back into it filling with clean wine. (It can be a hassle without having 2 demijohns)
 

trolo

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I got a bucket of Chilean cab franc and pino grigio from luva bella this spring they were doing the same. I tossed some k meta and let sit for a day then bumped up my sg then tossed my yeast i used 71b for both. just added sorbate and is clearing agent. getting ready to bottle. I will let you know the taste.
 

mainshipfred

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My first juice bucket Ireceived was from S Amercia this past spring and did not (as far as I remember) start fermenting. This fall I received 4 buckets and they all showed signs of premature fermentation even though they were stored at 28* before I picked them up. I wonder is it could have simply been the juice warming up after I picked it up from the vendor. I can't imagine juice fermenting at 28*.
 

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