What is best temperature for Primary and Secondary?

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AJP

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All,

I've researched/searched and I get 2 different answers. In general, it appears that whites are fermented at a lower temperature than reds.

Some recommend a warmer/faster ferment (to protect the wine faster and pull more flavor from the skins) and others recommend a slower/lower ferment to keep the skins in the ferment longer :h .

About a week ago, I set some bottles full of water in different locations in my basement. The water in the main part of my basement stays at 63F and in the back crawl space it stays at 58F.

I've ordered a Brew-Belt and a FermWrap ( I have controllers).

What temps would you use for Primary and Secondary?

I just ordered the WinExpert Stags Leap Merlot kit with skins. I plan to play around with the Brew-Belt and FermWrap and a bucket and Carboy full of water to get the temps just right (probably use a blanket to wrap them for more efficiency).

I also have a Moscato that will be coming out of primary in the next 2-3 days, I'd really like to move it to the basement when I put it in the carboy (been in primary in a closet up stairs 72F ambient and 75F must).

Thanks in advance,
AJ
 
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NorCal

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I have found that making wine, like poker, has the same answer, and that is "it depends". Check the specifications of the yeast you are using. I don't think many would disagree with having a long, but continuous primary fermentation, that does not experience problems, is the ideal fermentation.

A slow (right at the lower limits of the yeast) allows more time for maximum extraction of the flavors of the fruit. Alcohol is a solvent and a slow ferment allows more time and extraction.

However, where there is reward, there is risk. A slow ferment also invites bacteria and unwanted consequences. This trade off is just one of many decisions a winemaker must make.
 

AJP

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I have found that making wine, like poker, has the same answer, and that is "it depends". Check the specifications of the yeast you are using. I don't think many would disagree with having a long, but continuous primary fermentation, that does not experience problems, is the ideal fermentation.

A slow (right at the lower limits of the yeast) allows more time for maximum extraction of the flavors of the fruit. Alcohol is a solvent and a slow ferment allows more time and extraction.

However, where there is reward, there is risk. A slow ferment also invites bacteria and unwanted consequences. This trade off is just one of many decisions a winemaker must make.
Is there a chart with yeast and recommended temps? The kit instructions just say to pitch the yeast at (72F-75F).

What about secondary? Same temp as primary?

Sorry for noob questions, I just like having a plan and then executing to that plan. If it goes poorly, I can change things the next time.

Thanks,
AJ
 

Scooter68

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Every yeast has a min-max number for temps. You can find several charts online that will give you that info OR check on the manufacturers web site. Norcal nailed on on the plus and minus of low temp ferments. With Whites I've always just heard -avoid high temps for better retention of flavor and "essences" of the fruit.

AND a kit wine instructions are always 'best' to follow - except for aging. Longer aging time is always better.
 

drainsurgeon

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This may be the chart you're looking for: https://winemakermag.com/yeast-strains-chart

Also, I have found that once a good ferment starts, that it generates it's own heat and about all you can try to do is try and cool it with a fan or a cool water bath. A brew belt works great for starting a batch and getting the must into the right temp range. It can also be helpful to warm the wine into the 70's for driving off C02 gas if you're a whipper (like in step 3 for most kits).
 
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salcoco

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yeast temp are important but not the only variable that needs to be considered. White fermentation should be a low as possible , best range is 60-65degF regardless of juice source, kits or grapes. Red wine fermentation take on a different outlook if grape fermentation is being controlled. Most ferment of wine is to keep temp down blow 90deg for grape ferments. Wine kit ferments probably do not get that high. remember fermentation creates a temp rise so cooling is the requirement . Yeasts lower limits then become a concerns if to cold.
as for secondary temp if maintain anywhere between 60-75 should be fine. however clearing of the wine and co2 dissipates better at around 70deg.
 

Scooter68

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In your future ferments - along with temps - pay close attention to nutrient needs of your yeast. Some do better with feeding spread out, just one of the things you learn as you go. Hopefully you learn some things without experiencing the "Oh Oh" situations. Many (Most?) of us have run into a few of those situations and that's where this board is a life saver.
 

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