How to get more fruit-forward Marquette?!?

Discussion in 'General Wine Making Forum' started by mattyc, Sep 2, 2019.

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  1. Sep 2, 2019 #1

    mattyc

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    I'm working up my plan for my fifth year with Marquette and what I want to do with it, and reviewing previous years, tasting notes, etc... and the one thing I'd really like to do with this wine - but so far have been unsuccessful - is to make it *POP* with more fruitiness! I'm shooting for a dry, med-body wine... so not really interested in anything off-dry or semi-sweet or a rose, etc...

    I have some theories, but would love to get any feedback from y'all...

    I'm typically harvesting around mid-Sept (near Minneapolis MN) with numbers like this...
    2015 - 9/15 - 25.5, 12 g/L, 3.05 pH, 2450 GDD at harvest
    2016 - 9/18- 25.3, 12 g/L, 3.24, 2700 GDD (heavy wasp/bee pressure, grapes had also started to rot - still don't know exactly what that was, all wine went down drain )
    2017 - 9/14 - 23.0, 13.5 g/L, 2.99, 2450 GDD (picking earlier than I'd like to in order to avoid 2016 issues)
    2018 - 9/7 - 22.2, 12.3g/L, 3.10, 2600 GDD
    2019 - we'll see... super wet year, cooler than usual, veraison was about 10 days later than normal too.

    Destem & crush all berries. (no carbonic maceration or whole bunch or stems)

    I use 1 Tablespoon of Bentonite per 5 gal of must. (carryover from doing kits)
    I use 1 Tablespoon of powdered tanin per 5 gal of must. (attempt to compensate for Marquette reputation for lower tanin levels)
    I feed with yeast nutrient during fermentation.
    Typically use some pectic enzyme as well.

    Yeast - I've used Premier Rogue, 71b, and RC212. In 2017 I ran RC212 against 71b. The RC212 resulted in the least pretty semi-flabby wine, and it was fascinating how it obliterated the grapes. The 71b grapes still had some form to them - they still looked like grapes.

    Typically 7-8 days on skins. Finishing dry, running through MLF, TA at bottling typically 7.0-8.5.

    Oak - I over-oaked in early years for sure using 1/2 oz of American (med & hvy toast) per gallon for as long as 8 mos. (of course, that's my wife's favorite!) On my 2018 I went with Med French oak chips at the same rate of 1/2 oz/gal but only for 3 mos.

    And every time I'm unimpressed with the nose and flavors of my Marquette. I mostly smell alcohol, with some earthy/oak/spice/tobacco. Occasionally a hint of dark fruit as well. But I'd like more red fruit flavors to pop with this wine.

    Any thoughts/comments/suggestions?!? THANK YOU :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  2. Sep 2, 2019 #2

    ibglowin

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    Not seeing any use of:

    Opti-Red
    Lallzyme-EX
    Tannin FT Rouge
     
  3. Sep 3, 2019 #3

    mattyc

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    Interesting... can you expand on that?
     
  4. Sep 14, 2019 #4

    mattyc

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    Any other thoughts? Anything other than more additives?
     
  5. Sep 14, 2019 #5

    stickman

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    How long are you aging and what is your racking schedule? Are you aging in glass?
     
  6. Sep 14, 2019 #6

    salcoco

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    the opti red etc are for holding color. I see no attempt at reducing acid or any bench trials to create a balance with acid post fermentation. I believe your high brix and acid numbers are destroying any presence of fruit flavor. I would experiment with these two elements. I see you are relying on MLF to reduce the acid numbers but what was the ph? I would also research other yeast for reds, https://morewinemaking.com/web_files/intranet.morebeer.com/files/wyeastpair.pdf try this site. also browse scottlabs.inc they have a fermentation book online, they will mail it to you if you call, that identifies different yeast characteristics that might be better for your grape.
     
  7. Sep 14, 2019 #7

    mattyc

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    stickman, yes everything happens in glass after Primary. Aging about 12 months before bottling. Rack off gross lees a couple days after pressing, again in 2-3 months after MLF complete (january), then again every three mos - April & July.

    salcoco - Good question. I played with acid adjustment the first few years; I'd hit the must with CaCO3 to knock down the acid a little (~2g/L) up front and fine-tuning with K2CO3 prior to bottling.

    Last year I wanted to see what 71b could do for me, so I didn't do any adjustment on the must and the 71b took 12.3 g/L down to 7.5 g/L which I was thrilled with. pH was 3.10 at crush and 3.45 after pressing and 3.65 after MLF.

    I haven't done any bench trials for adjustments at bottling. If I'm in the 6.5-8.5 range, I've assumed that's close enough. Also, I really don't want to backsweeten.
     
  8. Sep 15, 2019 #8

    salcoco

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    your desire to not back sweeten is noted however I suggest doing some bench trials with sugar syrup to see if the fruit forward profile you desire is provided.
     
  9. Sep 16, 2019 #9

    jgmillr1

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    One year I blended some of the young wine from the current season (no MLF) with wine I had aged for a year. That brought some nice fruit to the wine while still retaining the aged, soft character of the Marquette. However, if you do this I strongly suggest you treat the wine as a sweet wine and add sorbate along with sufficient sulfites at bottling. There a risk of some residual sugar that may referment.

    You may want to go shorter on the skins. Pressing sooner will help preserve more fruit, akin to a Beaujolais style.
    This is relatively high for TA on a dry wine, so I suggest using either potassium bicarb to get that down to at least 6.5 (watch the pH doesn't go too high) or look at a small degree of back-sweetening as suggested by @salcoco. The backsweeten sugar also helps with the fruit aromas.
     
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  10. Sep 16, 2019 #10

    GreginND

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    I prefer to use 71B to help with overall acid reduction. It also helps enhance the fruit flavors. I've never used Mauravin B but that is also supposed to do more acid reduction. I co-inoculate with MLF after the first day or two after yeast addition. I also add oak dust or chips to the ferment to help preserve natural tannins from the grapes. I haven't used any other additives. Cold stabilization in the winter drops even more acid. My Marquette spends some time in flex tanks with American oak spirals and French oak staves. Then I let it be for some time and don't mess with it. I bottle after about a year of aging and it really emerges after another year in the bottle.

    Marquette is a higher acid hybrid grape. I try to get the acid down using yeast, MLF and cold stabilization. Other than that, unless I'm starting with a pH less than 3.00 at the beginning, I don't do any chemical adjustments. These are hybrid grapes and all of the things folks do with vinifera are not directly comparable most of the time.
     
  11. Sep 18, 2019 #11

    mattyc

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    That's a really good point. My "conviction" to not back sweeten - or at least experiment with it - may be partially to blame. I'm going to do some trials.

    Yes, this is a good point too. a "small" change from 8.0 down to 6.5 is about a 20% acid reduction - significant. I think I need to get more serious about bench trials for some fine-tuning of acid/sugar prior to bottling. I remember a strawberry wine I made the first year or two I was making wine and dry it was just terrible - undrinkable. And I lined up maybe 10 different samples with varying degrees of backsweetening and my wife and I were stunned at how the sugar makes the fruit "pop" and turns it into something really good.

    Greg - thanks for the perspective on your process as well. I intend to use 71b again this year due to the acid reduction I saw last year.

    I"m going to drop the standard dose of Bentonite this year as well. Been reading more about that and I don't think it's doing me any favors.
     
  12. Sep 18, 2019 #12

    stickman

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    I haven't tried any of the new bacteria strains, but Viniflora CiNe is reported to be "the fruit Keeper". The information below is from the producer Chr. Hansen.


    Viniflora® CiNe is a freeze-dried, direct inoculation starter culture of Oenococcus oeni. CiNe is a unique strain that does not metabolize citric acid therefore it does not produce diacetyl or the typical buttery/creamy flavor traditionally linked to malolactic cultures. CiNe intensifies the fruit in white, rose and red wines.This strain is pH tolerant to 3.2, Total SO2 to 30 ppm, temperature 62 – 77° F and alcohol to 14% (v/v).


     
  13. Oct 13, 2019 at 1:29 PM #13

    BenK

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    I used RC212 as it was recommended for fruit forward reds this year and last year. Would 71b be a better choice for 2020?

    How are you achieving 25 brix in Minneapolis? In the Madison WI area the marquette is around 20 brix towards the middle of September the last two years.
     

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