QA23 vs D47 for Whites (Chardonnay & Viognier)

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Bmd2k1

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looking to get some feedback on QA23 vs D47 for Chardonnay & Viognier. I currently use D47 exclusively for both - but intend to try QA23 over the fall/winter for both.

So I'm really in a real world experiences info collecting mode for QA23.


Here's what the typical Yeast Info sheet has to say:

D47
Leaves a wine very full bodied with enhanced mouthfeel. Accentuates varietal character and contributes ripe tropical fruit and citrus notes.
Temp Range: 50-86 °F (10-30 °C)
Alcohol Tolerance: 14%

QA23
Portuguese isolate used for production of fresh, fruity, white wines. Will not give structure to a wine, but it excels at focusing the fruit either alone or as part of a blend.
Temp Range: 59-89 °F (15-32 °C)
Alcohol Tolerance: 16%

Cheers!
 
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I did a side by side comparison of these two yeasts in three different wines (Muscat Blanc, Roussanne and Viognier). What I found was 1) body was dramatically better for D47 vs QA23 -QA23 seemed coarse in the mouth and thinner. This was much les of a factor for Viognier since it has a big body no matter what. 2) The aromatics of the D47 were very "pure" -intense and floral, while the QA23 was fruitier but less intense. Neither yeast had any fermentation issues. I did a second comparison of QA23 vs Rhone4600 in Picpoul. In this case the body from Rhone4600 was also quite a bit fuller than QA23. However, the aromatics of QA23 were dramatically better. By the way, I also did a direct comparison of Rhone4600 and BA11 in Grenache Blanc. BA11 had the aromatic qualities of QA23 (fruitiness) but the body of D47. Rhone4600 produced a very neutral and boring wine, it had a good body and it was extremely clear.

As a result of these experiments I decided 1) not to use QA23 on its own, but replace it with BA11, 2) not to use Rhone4600, but instead use D47 in grapes were a floral character is important, 3) that QA23 can provide good fruit aromatics but probably needs to be blended with another yeast unless the wine is naturally very full-bodied. All-in-all, I would say that D47 is my go-to yeast for most whites, especially if they are aroma-driven. This is odd since D47 is specifically prescribed for Chardonnay, which I don't think is especially floral in character, but I guess body is what Chardonnay is all about (I've never understood people's interest in Chardonnay, honestly, other than that it's "famous".) I also advise D47 for grapes high in acid (hybrids, riesling, Italian varietals like Falanghina) or bitterness (Muscat)

I am doing a BA11 vs D47 on Albarino right now, though the comparison is not going to be controlled. Both batches are from the same vineyard, but the harvest dates are different and the training types are also different (head trained for D47 vs wires for BA11).

I'm trying some new white yeasts this year: Opale 2.0, Floral from CellarScience, and Cross Evolution. Anyone have any experience with these?

-Aaron
 
Isn’t the drawback to D47 typically that it can be quite finicky? I’ve been doing more fruit wine and meads currently, where the tropical vibe that QA23 is supposed to excel in, so that’s been my go to. I am really interested in some of the CellarScience products as well. I haven’t tried any of their wine yeasts, but have the Tropic Thunder and other nutrients and have been pleased so far. I have a couple packs of their Hazy beer yeast I just received as well, so should be jumping in on that soon.
Definitely looking forward to other’s experiences!
 
Isn’t the drawback to D47 typically that it can be quite finicky? I’ve been doing more fruit wine and meads currently, where the tropical vibe that QA23 is supposed to excel in, so that’s been my go to. I am really interested in some of the CellarScience products as well. I haven’t tried any of their wine yeasts, but have the Tropic Thunder and other nutrients and have been pleased so far. I have a couple packs of their Hazy beer yeast I just received as well, so should be jumping in on that soon.
Definitely looking forward to other’s experiences!
I've had zero issues using D47 in my Chards, Viognier, Pinot Grigio, Zin Rose and hard ciders.

It will be my go to for those until something (maybe QA23) is proven "better". ;-)

Cheers!
 
I used both QA23 and BA11 in the base wine for my 2022 Blanc de Noir. My tasting notes were consistent from during fermentation through to when they were blended 4 months later. Both had nice fruit flavor; more pure stone fruit in BA11 and QA23 a bit more citrussy. BA11 imparted a softer mouthfeel (consistent with @AaronSC above). Later on I found QA to be the more aromatic but BA11 mouthfeel stood out.

They made a great blend! :)
 
Isn’t the drawback to D47 typically that it can be quite finicky? I’ve been doing more fruit wine and meads currently, where the tropical vibe that QA23 is supposed to excel in, so that’s been my go to. I am really interested in some of the CellarScience products as well. I haven’t tried any of their wine yeasts, but have the Tropic Thunder and other nutrients and have been pleased so far. I have a couple packs of their Hazy beer yeast I just received as well, so should be jumping in on that soon.
Definitely looking forward to other’s experiences!
Can you say what you mean by 'finicky' -that's pretty vague. In my experience (I started using D47 in 1998) I've never had any problems with it (unlike Epernay 2, which is very prone to sticking, if that's what you mean by finicky.
 
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