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Hi everyone,
Have now got to the point of racking and clearing on a gallon of gooseberry (green & red) wine from homegrown fruits after roughly 6-7 weeks of fermentation. I hadded 1g (one level teespoon) of stabiliser has per instructions to be sure fermentation had completely ceased, however the wine now has what I can only describe has a "sharpeness" within the odour similar to smelling salts. I have used stabiliser before and had positive results so not sure what has happened.
 

sour_grapes

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What exactly is the "stabilizer"? This can mean different things to different people.
 
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Sodium Metabisulphite used to stop a fermentation and stabilise the wine before moving on to clearing, used in this instance to make sure the wine will not reactivate it's ferment upon bottling.
 

sour_grapes

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Hi everyone,
Have now got to the point of racking and clearing on a gallon of gooseberry (green & red) wine from homegrown fruits after roughly 6-7 weeks of fermentation. I hadded 1g (one level teespoon) of stabiliser has per instructions to be sure fermentation had completely ceased, however the wine now has what I can only describe has a "sharpeness" within the odour similar to smelling salts. I have used stabiliser before and had positive results so not sure what has happened.
Your problem is that 1 g is nowhere near 1 teaspoon. 1 teaspoon is about 5 grams. This will dissipate in time, but you gave it a seriously large dose, so it will take a while.
 
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Helpful people many thanks, it tastes absolutely fine tho!........... Will give it time to and see what happens.
 

cmason1957

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Sodium Metabisulphite used to stop a fermentation and stabilise the wine before moving on to clearing, used in this instance to make sure the wine will not reactivate it's ferment upon bottling.
I'm surprised nobody else mentioned this, but Sodium (or Potassium) Metabisulphite won't stop a fermentation. It makes the yeast a little bit angry, but that is about all, slows it down some, maybe.
 

jgmillr1

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I'm surprised nobody else mentioned this, but Sodium (or Potassium) Metabisulphite won't stop a fermentation. It makes the yeast a little bit angry, but that is about all, slows it down some, maybe.
True for a normal dose of <75ppm but it sounds like this dose was closer to 750ppm!
 

Ajmassa

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I assume the ratio 1g or 1tsp: 1 gal is somewhere near 50-75 ppm since there is potassium hexa 2,4 dienoate in there as well. Which is just the fancy name for potassium sorbate.
Sorbate shouldn’t be needed if you fermented dry and don’t plan to sweeten.
Having a bag of straight k-meta would make things less complicated in the future. That way you know exactly what you are adding. And it seconds as a sanitizer in higher dosage. (Which I think could be compared to ammonia smelling salts)
 

Johnd

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It’s worth mentioning that most folks use potassium metabisulfite, as opposed to sodium metabisulfite. Sodium is fine for sanitizing needs, but most don’t add it to wine, as it can add an undesirable taste to your finished product.
 
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Useful advise and thank you all, has a relatively new wine maker it's safe to say that I have just followed ingredients lists/recipes to the letter. Going forward I'd like to start questioning the use of such chemical based additives and try keep it has organic and sulphite free has possible where possible if at all possible. And also with me being UK based there may be times when descriptions/measurements or additive based compounds may vary on descriptions to most of the forum based members here. For me the pleasure is in making wine and seeing people enjoy It's successes plus being inventive and understanding how to fix a failed batch, for me this has been a natural progression from the successful jam/pickle/chutney/relish making of the last few years so look forward to more.
many thanks.
 

Ajmassa

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That’s the beauty of this hobby. It’s not all black and white.
You could give 10 different home winemakers a batch of mixed white and red gooseberry grapes and get 10 completely different processes- and none of em are wrong !
I do have a question for ya. You said your ferment was about 6-7 weeks. At what point did you press the grapes and transfer them to your aging vessel?
I ask because typically a large amount of lees drops out directly after pressing and an extra racking off this gross lees is done usually 1-3 days after pressing. It is said that gross lees can impart some harsh characteristics to the wine.
 

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