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Any advise on jump starting a stuck malolactic fermentation? I completed my primary fermentation of a blended Bordeaux wine which sits in two glass carboys. I racked off the gross lees and added dry Viniflora Oenos cultures directly into the wine. For ~2 weeks I have gently stirred the wine once a day to have the cultures interact with the fine lees. Unfortunately, no action. Thoughts?
 

CDrew

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Did you test it? Often for me there is little to no indication that anything is happening, and you may be fine. What temperature is your wine? That has a huge effect on speed.
 

NorCal

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I will see small bubbles around the neck of the carboy within a few days of adding mlb. The elements that make mlf not want to work are temperature, SO2 levels, ABV level and low pH. What mlb did you use and are you high in any of these elements?
 
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Did you test it? Often for me there is little to no indication that anything is happening, and you may be fine. What temperature is your wine? That has a huge effect on speed.
I haven’t tested. Wine is 64.5 degrees; ambient room temperature is 66. I check daily to see if there are any bubbles in the airlock but I haven’t seen any.
 
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I will see small bubbles around the neck of the carboy within a few days of adding mlb. The elements that make mlf not want to work are temperature, SO2 levels, ABV level and low pH. What mlb did you use and are you high in any of these elements?
ABV is approx 13%; temperature is 64.5. I don’t have the ability to check SO2. I just used the Viniflora Oenos cultures but the package also cites BACTIV-AID nutrients as an aid. Do you think I need to purchase that and add it to the wine?
 

CDrew

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You could try to warm it up to say 70F and see what happens. This is part of the reason I co-inoculate the MLB. Fermentation warms the must a bit and then I add the MLB around day 2 or 3. I've not used any MLB nutrients, though I intend to next year when I try the VP41. Previously in over 10 wines I've used CH16 and never had an issue.
 
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You could try to warm it up to say 70F and see what happens. This is part of the reason I co-inoculate the MLB. Fermentation warms the must a bit and then I add the MLB around day 2 or 3. I've not used any MLB nutrients, though I intend to next year when I try the VP41. Previously in over 10 wines I've used CH16 and never had an issue.
Greatly appreciate the advice and I will definitely try to warm up the wine which sits in my basement. I think next year I too will co-inoculate as this is my second attempt at MLF and I’ve struggled both times. Again, many thanks.
 

CDrew

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Greatly appreciate the advice and I will definitely try to warm up the wine which sits in my basement. I think next year I too will co-inoculate as this is my second attempt at MLF and I’ve struggled both times. Again, many thanks.
You might consider what MLB you use too. The 2 strains that I hear on this forum that seem to work everytime with no fuss, are CH16 and VP41. I've always used CH16 which I like because you just toss it as frozen granules into the wine and let it rip. 100% success for me in red wines. Forum members I respect like VP41, so I'm trying that next year to get personal experience. I hope yours works out in the end, and I bet it will with higher temperatures.
 

NorCal

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Have you added any SO2? I don’t add any (besides at crush) until after mlf has completed. Temp and SO2 I’ve seen are big contributors I’d look for 70 degrees as well. Mlf will not produce the same CO2 as the alcoholic fermentation. They produce tiny bubbles. Went out to my box and took a pic.

6421C5F1-433A-4079-B899-E8A83EF6D5F0.jpeg
 
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You might consider what MLB you use too. The 2 strains that I hear on this forum that seem to work everytime with no fuss, are CH16 and VP41. I've always used CH16 which I like because you just toss it as frozen granules into the wine and let it rip. 100% success for me in red wines. Forum members I respect like VP41, so I'm trying that next year to get personal experience. I hope yours works out in the end, and I bet it will with higher temperatures.
Will try to warm up the carboys and see if that kicks off the process. Sage advice for next year which I intend to follow. Thanks.
 

BI81

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Sound advice from @NorCal and @CDrew. A few other items to consider how was your bacteria shipped and at what temperature? What SO2 did you add at crush, and one that most don’t consider is the SO2 production of your yeast strain. All may contribute incremental impacts that when combined can inhibit MLF
 

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