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winemanden

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The claim that Natural Wines without added sulphites cannot cause headaches is challenged by a new study. In a research paper, Sophie Parker-Thomson MW from New Zealand proves that wines to which no sulphur has been added before fermentation contain higher levels of biogenic amines. The best known of these is histamine. It has been proven that especially biogenic amines, which are also found in many fermented foods, cause headaches in sensitive people.


The study implies that the addition of sulphur actually lowers the risk of negative effects - and does not increase it. It thus contradicts the claim that Natural Wines are more digestible without added sulphur. Sophie Parker-Thomson MW points out in her paper that even small amounts of sulphur dioxide (at least 30 mg/L) added to the must before fermentation significantly reduce the negative effects of biogenic amines without affecting mash fermentation or spontaneous fermentation

What do you think? With it or Without?
 

Tim3

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I hadn’t seen that article, thank you for sharing. Particularly in light of that article I can’t think of any good reason to forgo adding 30 - 40 ppm metabisulfite prior to fermentation with fresh grape juice / must. There’s just too much that can go wrong and it’s such a low risk safeguard. A kit is different since it’s been pasteurized and you’re not worried about any bugs. But with non pasteurized juice/must 3 additions (pre fermentation, after primary or secondary @ racking, and before bottling) totaling about 90-120 ppm is my recommendation.

I believe the sulfite headaches are nonsense since a piece of dried fruit contains more sulfite than a bottle of wine, and yet you never hear about the dried fruit headaches! I think there’s too many people who just drink too much, and it’s a lot easier to blame sulfites than alcohol for your hangover. Like somehow it’s not your fault if it’s “sulfites”.
 

MisterEd

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IIRC all wine has a very small amount of sulfite that is generated by the yeast action during fermentation. Those folks who say their natural wine is sulfite free is technically incorrect unless they are filtering it out somehow, which I am unsure is even possible.
 

franc1969

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Histamines and other amines are what causes a problem for me - not sufites. I probably use too much kmeta. Aged wines with uncontrolled malolactic I avoid.
 

balatonwine

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The no-sulfite wine I've tried had no shelf life.
A sulfite free* Hungarian Tokaji aszú will last decades.

As an interesting side note: fermentation of a premium Tokaji aszú can take years (contrary to the fast fermentation so often discussed here in days or weeks). Fun fact. 😎

*Edit: All wine has sulfites, I meant no added sulfites....
 
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A sulfite free* Hungarian Tokaji aszú will last decades.

As an interesting side note: fermentation of a premium Tokaji aszú can take years (contrary to the fast fermentation so often discussed here in days or weeks). Fun fact. 😎
I agree, it is a fun fact -- one I was not aware of.

However, Tokaji aszú isn't a normal wine, so it's not a valid counter example.

Now you have me wondering about what other wines are like this. The TotalWine near me has one in stock, priced at $55 USD. This is higher than my normal price range, but I have the urge to try it ...

 

balatonwine

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However, Tokaji aszú isn't a normal wine, so it's not a valid counter example.
You are right. ;)

I was cheating a bit.... or a lot.... to angle in my adopted home. And to add what everyone I hope thinks is a fun wine making fact. :cool:

I mean seriously.... fermenting wine for years. Even I do not have that level of patience... o_O
 

Bossbaby

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For me the cheap 6 dollar wines whether it's one or 3 glasses will always give me a headache from what I remember, it's been a long time since I've had these wines. I keep up on adding sulphites during aging and do not get headaches from my wines, so I'm not sure what the commonality is with headaches and cheap wine.
 

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