using dry ice to keep a juice from fermenting

Winemaking Talk - Winemaking Forum

Help Support Winemaking Talk - Winemaking Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

winemaker81

wine dabbler
Staff member
Super Moderator
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 5, 2006
Messages
10,487
Reaction score
29,951
Location
Raleigh, NC, USA
We are planning to purchase a couple of juice buckets at the same time as grapes. The plan is to ferment the grapes, lightly press, then add the juice buckets to the pomace to extract all the goodness possible from the pomace.

Last year we did the same with Merlot kits, and the results are good.

The trick is to keep the buckets from fermenting before we're ready to add the pomace. I have no way of refrigerating a 6 gallon bucket, much less two, and am wondering if I can use dry ice to keep the just cold enough for a bit over a week.

Has anyone done this? Or have other ideas for keeping the bucket from fermenting/
 
I have put buckets of grapes (and shrimp) inside a large container and filled around buckets with Ice, worked great for several days.
You must be around to keep a close eye on in and change ice out. I used frozen gallon jugs with large quilt thrown over the whole thing. Dry Ice should be similar but I would wrap dry ice in cloth or wrap buckets with cardboard as dry Ice will attempt to freeze juice. Probably take an hour or two with thermometer to get the distance ( or insulation level) from buckets-to-Ice just right. -109 is super cold. I would not leave it all day without someone home to keep an eye on temp.
 
For the future..... get you a good ole used fridge on craigslist and keep in somewhere out of the way; maybe the back of the garage. Times like these, pop out the shelves and put in a couple buckets. Cold stabilize, store yeast and stuff. I use my old fridge all the time.
 
@NoQuarter, thanks for the tips. I figure that even if the dry ice is food grade, dropping it in the juice is a bad idea. I've never dealt with dry ice, and although there's info on WMT, it's worth getting fresh feedback.

After posting I also considered transferring the juice to 7.9 gallon fermenters and rotating in/out frozen gallons of water. And covering it all with blankets to preserve cold.

Last year we purchased 19 lugs, 8 each of two varietals and 1 each of 3 others. The 8 lug batches were fermented in Brutes in 4 lug groups, while the singletons were individually fermented in 6 to 7.9 gallon primaries, then field blended.

This year we're getting two 8 lug varietals and 4 lugs of a third, so I need to get another Brute. The 32 gallon Brutes are overkill for the batches I'm making, so I've considered buying five 20 gallon Brutes, and selling off the 32's. However, a pair of 32's would work well as a container for the juice buckets with ice and possibly dry ice around them.
 
Dry ice is great for keeping things frozen. We can buy dry ice in the grocery store here. I bought some several years ago when I brought frozen mango and some nice grouper I caught in the gulf on a road trip up to NY. It was all packed in a cooler with regular ice. Two day trip (I don’t do that 24 hr drive in one day anymore) and the dry ice kept it so cold the regular ice didn’t even melt.

So it’s great for keeping things VERY cold or very frozen. It also gives off co2 as it dissipates so keep that in mind. I would try a different scenario.
 
Unlike most solids, it does not melt into a liquid, but instead changes directly into a gas. This process is called sublimation. The temperature of dry ice is around -109° F

negative 109°🤪
 
Admittedly, I have no Idea how big Raleigh is, but I personally would pick this beauty for $50 and stick it in the garage, or promise the mrs's it will disappear from the backyard in a week or so. Rip out some shelves, plug er in, and voila. The path of least resistance!

https://raleigh.craigslist.org/app/d/raleigh-haier-refridgerator/7662944644.html
Chest freezers are really cheap to turn into fridges too, if the design is more space functional... ie. it can be a work bench for 51 weeks of the year. :p
 
We’ve used dry ice to cool warm must during an extended cold soak. It was expensive but did the trick along with wet towels and a fan when the CO2 sublimated. These were fifty gallon Brutes and full to allow rising caps.

Should work good on a couple of buckets.

Used fridge is a great idea. Used freezer is a better one.
 
Unlike most solids, it does not melt into a liquid, but instead changes directly into a gas. This process is called sublimation. The temperature of dry ice is around -109° F
I recall high school chemistry; it's good for you to mention for folks that don't realize it. Touching dry ice with bare hand is a bad idea.

Getting a fridge is a good idea, but I literally have no place to put it. My garage is 25'x25', but with large upright freezer, work bench, 2 large shelving units, router table, planer, and jointner, there's literally no room for anything.
 
I recall high school chemistry; it's good for you to mention for folks that don't realize it. Touching dry ice with bare hand is a bad idea.

Getting a fridge is a good idea, but I literally have no place to put it. My garage is 25'x25', but with large upright freezer, work bench, 2 large shelving units, router table, planer, and jointner, there's literally no room for anything.
Time for a third bay on that garage.
 
Back
Top