Okay...ideas as to what happened?

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wtt03

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Hi all,
Ok so I just finished a gallon batch of Rose Petal wine per one of Jack Keller's recipes online. Everything went great. I let it clear on it's own for a few months and it was beautiful Rose' color. I racked off of the very fine sediment into a sterilized 1 gal jug and then added 1 crushed Campden Tablet and 1 tsp of potassium sorbate that I had mixed together and dissolved in a little spring water. The instant the additives hit the wine, the wine went clear, as in no color anymore. I had the same thing happen to me last year while making a 1 gal batch of strawberry wine. Everything was good until adding the additives. I've made numerous batches of wine before and this has only happened the 2 times, both with that strawberry red/Rose' color. I added red food coloring to both to get the color back but I can't figure out what happened. Any ideas?
 
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BernardSmith

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Hi wtt03. I think that that is a great question and while I am not a chemist and have no chemistry background I wonder whether there may be something in the stabilizers that affect the anthocyanins - those compounds that provide for the red color in strawberry wine - and allow them to drop out of solution or in some other way affect their ability to provide for the red or rose color you want. Certainly, I have never experienced a loss of color when I make strawberry wine but I understand that unless the wine is quite acidic and unless there are sufficient tannins in the wine to "fix" the color (so that it is not transformed or lost) folk often find that their strawberry wine changes from red to a pale orange color (think strawberry blonde). Cannot speak to rose petal wine but the cause may be similar.
 

sour_grapes

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You added a Campden tablet AND 1 tsp of k-meta? That is enough for about 25 gallons of wine. I think the excess k-meta stripped all of your color compounds!

EDIT: as described below, the OP corrected his original post to indicate s/he added potassium sorbate, not potassium metabisulfite.
 
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wtt03

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Bernard,
Thank you for the reply. I agree it seems as though some type of chemical reaction is going on but exactly what it is and how to combat it in the future is what’s bugging me. It may very well be acid related. At the present time I don’t have any way to test the PH of my wine. It’s actually something I’ve just learned I should be doing since joining this forum not too very long ago . Never knew that before. Both times it happened it was an “Aaaaggghhhh!!” moment!

Sour_grapes,
Oops my bad, I meant to say potassium sorbate and a campden tablet. Thanks for pointing out the mistake in my post to me. Yes that would’ve been really bad! That is now fixed in my original post.
 

crushday

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Well, I don’t use sorbate. But, I used to. Kits come with 5gm or 1 tsp of sorbate. The few times I did add it, there was an obvious reaction to the wine - almost like an atomic bomb went off as I dumped the sorbate in the wine. The reaction fanned out to the edges simultaneously and I watched the effect on the wine. I assume if you used 1 tsp for a one gallon batch, that is the culprit.
 

WellingtonToad

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Nothing wrong with your wine. It is a normal reaction. K-meta has a bleaching effect on wine.
As the wine ages, the K-meta will react with other components and the colour should return. That is if the wine lasts that long. [emoji12]
 

Scooter68

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From what I read he added the correct amount of both SORBATE and Campden Tablets. He didn't state that he also added K-Meta powder, just the Tablet
 

sour_grapes

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From what I read he added the correct amount of both SORBATE and Campden Tablets. He didn't state that he also added K-Meta powder, just the Tablet
He misstated it originally, and corrected it after I made my post. See post #4.
 

Vinobeau

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I just bottled 5 gallons of Wild Rose Petal wine and I used Potassium Sorbate. One problem could be using 1 tsp per gallon. You should only use 1/2 tsp per gallon. Too much can cause Flowers of Wine which is a lot worse than loss of color! The other problem could be using the Campden tablet along with the sorbitol at the same time.
Will you be back sweetening?
 

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BernardSmith

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Well, I don’t use sorbate. But, I used to. Kits come with 5gm or 1 tsp of sorbate. The few times I did add it, there was an obvious reaction to the wine - almost like an atomic bomb went off as I dumped the sorbate in the wine. The reaction fanned out to the edges simultaneously and I watched the effect on the wine. I assume if you used 1 tsp for a one gallon batch, that is the culprit.
If you add powder or anything with edges to a solution saturated with gas (CO2) the gas nucleates around the rough edges and falls out of solution and will then push any liquid above it up and so you get an almost explosive effect as liquid and foam fill the top of your fermenter and then shoot out. The solution is to always dissolve powders fully in water before adding them to a wine.
 

wtt03

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Thank you for all of your replies. Any and all information is always greatly appreciated!

Vinobeau,
I did use 1 tsp of sorbate for 1 gallon as that is what the directions on the pkg said to use. Are you saying this is to much for Rose Petal wine or all wines in general? I’ve always used the recommended dosage and never experienced any problems (that I’m aware of). Also you say that maybe adding both campden and sorbate at the same time could possibly be an issue? I didn’t know this either. Is it preferable to add them separately and if so in what order ( if it matters) and how long between additions? Thank you for your insight!
 

wtt03

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Bernard,
Interesting information on the addition of powders with edges in a gaseous solution. I’ve always dissolved in a little water and added just because it was less work getting it mixed in the carboy. Haha I did something right without knowing it!
 

Vinobeau

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Thank you for all of your replies. Any and all information is always greatly appreciated!

Vinobeau,
I did use 1 tsp of sorbate for 1 gallon as that is what the directions on the pkg said to use. Are you saying this is to much for Rose Petal wine or all wines in general? I’ve always used the recommended dosage and never experienced any problems (that I’m aware of). Also you say that maybe adding both campden and sorbate at the same time could possibly be an issue? I didn’t know this either. Is it preferable to add them separately and if so in what order ( if it matters) and how long between additions? Thank you for your insight!
I always use 1/2 tsp of Sorbate per gal for all of my wines that need back sweetening. I also very rarely use campden after the initial prelim fermentation, so I can't comment on adding them at the same time. Bernard's analysis is very interesting! A key to it may be in the statement of a "gaseous solution". I always add the sorbate at the end of my processes, when the wine is pretty gas / co2 free.
 

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