The rewards and frustrations of home winemaking

Time to Nix the MLF

I’m pretty sure the MLB is not viable anyway, but I don’t want to risk exploding wine bottles, either.  What we needed to do was treat our merlot with lysozyme.  Lysozyme is an enzyme that will lyse the bacterial walls, which definitely completely destroys any bacteria that might still be hanging around.  Chris Van Alyea was nice enough to give me enough lysozyme to treat my home carboys and our barrel of merlot when I helped out with bottling his wine in Carlsbad.  We don’t have to worry about the Cab, since it completed MLF – it will definitely be stable.  I made up the lysozyme into a 10% solution with water, and stirred it in to give a final 1.4 g/gallon concentration.  It will need to sit a few days to settle back out again, but we shouldn’t wait more than a week, because any bacteria hiding out (especially in the barrel) could start to regrow after the enzyme is pooped out.  The cab is good to go, so we just added some K-meta to it in anticipation of bottling soon.

I also tasted my home merlot while I was mucking with them.  Lot A has a nice nose of spicy plums, blackberries, and raspberries.  The oak is noticeable on the tongue, but not obnoxious.  It is still very acidic and tart, hot and dry with very little fruit hidden underneath.  Lot B, on the other hand, has light oak on the nose with spice and plum, very mellow.  Very smooth to taste, with light spice and good fruit.  It’s very interesting how different they turned out!  I tried a quick 5:6 blend of A:B (because that’s the volume I happened to have left after tasting), it was NOT balanced and did not improve anything.  Ewww.

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