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Punching down the cap..

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blumentopferde

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Since second runs have overtaken this topic I would like to add some question on it: ;-)
I don't really understand of how it works. Following the instructions on winemakermag, I just add sugared water and press again? Why would that work? wouldn't the added liquid just run through without leaving much to extract?
Or would I leave the sugar water with the pomace for a few days and get it through another fermentation process before I press?
Could you explain that a little bit more to me?
 

BernardSmith

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That is precisely what winemakermag suggests you do. In other words, you treat the pomace as if it is crushed grapes and you ferment again on those grapes. Given that you have extracted much or all of the juice, you add sugar water to the pomace (and the article suggests you add tartaric acid) and the yeast still in the pomace is enough to restart the fermentation immediately. You know that because a few hours later the cap is back on top of the sugar water and as you punch down that cap two or three times a day color and flavor is extracted and the yeast produce wine. I think mine was at a pH of 3.4 when I removed the pomace a second time and was close to 1.000.
 

blumentopferde

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Thanks Bernard for making that clear! For me that sounded like "just add some ingredients and press again"... X-D

To add something to both topics at the same time: I have been experimenting with something similar like second runs. I was making some kind of pomace wine, I just collected all my pomace - mostly from white grapes - added some yeast to it and and let it ferment for a week and then pressed it. And that actually worked - the fermentation process would still extract considerable amounts of liquid out of the skins. Obviously there is no way to "push down the cap", as the fermentation process starts with much more solids than liquids, so my work around was to just lay some plastic film directly on the pomace and let it ferment.

And guess what, that worked! No mold, nor off flavours and I still still extract about 50% of the pomaces weight into wine! The result is weird though, so I guess from now on I will make common second runs ;-)
 

BernardSmith

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But that was my experience too with red grapes. You crush the grapes so there is virtually no juice for the first week but there is enough juice after a day or so to enable you to punch down the fruit. Indeed, I suspect, but I could be wrong, if there was not enough liquid there would be no way that the fruit would form a cap because the yeast would not have enough liquid to transport the sugars through their cell walls. Certainly, my VERY limited experience suggests that crushing the grapes results in a very, very small amount of juice (even with the addition of enzymes to help extract juice and break down pectins) but after a few days the yeast extract a very significant amount of juice.
But I am curious: if these are grapes for white wine don't you press them immediately? Are you also fermenting on the pressed grapes for the first run?
 

blumentopferde

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But that was my experience too with red grapes. You crush the grapes so there is virtually no juice for the first week but there is enough juice after a day or so to enable you to punch down the fruit. Indeed, I suspect, but I could be wrong, if there was not enough liquid there would be no way that the fruit would form a cap because the yeast would not have enough liquid to transport the sugars through their cell walls. Certainly, my VERY limited experience suggests that crushing the grapes results in a very, very small amount of juice (even with the addition of enzymes to help extract juice and break down pectins) but after a few days the yeast extract a very significant amount of juice.
Sounds legit, but I don't have that much experience with red wine either ;-)
I just can tell you that if you make a second run without additional water, the pomace will stay mostly solid till the fermentation is over. Still the amount of extract is quite considerable. That could also be due to the fact that I am using a hydro press which won't extract as much as a basket press...

But I am curious: if these are grapes for white wine don't you press them immediately? Are you also fermenting on the pressed grapes for the first run?
Sure. I just had a normal first run, but that just got about 50% of juice out of the grapes, so didn't want to throw away all that pomace and gave it a try. ;-)

Anyways, the taste was just too intensive for white wine, but maybe it would work well on a red, who knows?
 

winemaker81

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To expand upon what Bernard has said, 2nd run wine works on the premise that the pomace still contains "goodness", for lack of a better term.

Pressing the 1st run wine has extracted most of the liquid and most (maybe all) of the sugar. So we add water, sugar, tannin, and acid blend to fill in the holes, and let it ferment using the existing yeast.

I will press this year's 2nd run tomorrow -- for each 2 gallons of wine I got from the first run, I added: 1 gallon water, 2 lbs sugar, 2 tsp tannin, 1 tsp acid blend. The short answer is you get 1/2 the yield of the 1st run.

Keep in mind that the 2nd run will be lighter than the 1st run, it has lesser body and it's not a deep red wine. However, it's still a nice wine, and you got it for the cost of sugar and some additives. Last year's 2nd run was bottled today -- 14 gallons that has been in a barrel since December. Previously I bottled a 5 gallon carboy. For about $30 USD, I got 19 gallons of a lighter wine.
 

winemaker81

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For this year's 2nd run, I added 15 gallons of water to the pomace from 576 lbs (16 lugs) of grapes. We pressed today and pressed hard, the cakes were dry when removed from the press. My yield was 19 gallons, so the pomace held 4 gallons of wine. There's a lot of sediment, so I'm guessing I'll have ~16 to 17 gallons of finished wine. At $0.38/bottle (USD), it's worth the effort.
 

blumentopferde

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To expand upon what Bernard has said, 2nd run wine works on the premise that the pomace still contains "goodness", for lack of a better term.

Pressing the 1st run wine has extracted most of the liquid and most (maybe all) of the sugar. So we add water, sugar, tannin, and acid blend to fill in the holes, and let it ferment using the existing yeast.
I'm just figuring out that it would be quite a waste if I didn't do a second run: I use a hydro press and it seems to leave a lot of "goodness" in the pomace.
This year I had about 30 liters of white wine and was left with about 14 liters of pomace after pressing (weighing it would have been more informative though...).

I also added yeast to the pomace - without adding sugar and water - to let it ferment too. After the maceration process I pressed again and could still extract 7 liters. So about 50% of the "goodness" was still left in the pomace.

Since now it is too late for a "regular" second run, I now added water, sugar and acid to the wine and hope that this will restart the fermentation...
 

balatonwine

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Neither wine is going to win an award for "best red wine color of the year".

However, both have far more body and flavor than you'd expect, based upon the color.
In my humble opinion, what matters if the total experience. Even if the color was lacking, it can be made up with nose and or palate. And the three need not be weighted evenly. I would put eye lowest on the list, especially if nose and palate are good.
 
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