The rewards and frustrations of home winemaking

Tag archive: malolactic fermentation

Sluggish Syrah Malo Finally Done!

I just tested our 2011 syrah batch #1 for malic acid levels, and it’s finally done!  I’m still baffled why this one batch, out of four total, took 2 more weeks to finish MLF than the others.  The particular yeast used (ICV-D80) must have produced something that was slowing down the malolactic bacteria.  I’m curious […]

Syrah MLF (mostly) Done

  It’s almost 6 weeks after initiating malolactic fermentation on our 2011 Fallbrook Syrah. I tested malic acid levels today with the Accuvin quick tests. Batch #1 (fermented with ICV-D80) is the one batch that didn’t seem to be progressing at all, but today it seems to be below the max value on the scale. […]

Syrah Day

Today I’m finally getting around to taking care of the 2010 Syrah we just brought down, plus I need to stir and check the progression of the MLF on the 2011 Syrah.  My Hands-on Winemaking class did the initial test for lactic acid in all four batches of the 2011 Syrah last Sunday, and all […]

Second Fermentation on 2011 Syrah

After our pressing class last night, the wine has settled out.  Now it’s time to pump off the cleared wine and start secondary fermentation: malolactic fermentation.  This process sometimes happens naturally, but it’s always safer to inoculate with fresh malolactic bacteria to be sure you know what is working on your wine — it could […]

Syrah Malo and Oak into the Barrels

It’s been about 4 weeks since I added fresh malolactic bacteria to the syrah to try to get MLF going again.  I’ve been stirring it once or twice a week and keeping a heat pad on it overnight and in the cool parts of the daytime to keep the temperature between 70 – 80?F.  I […]

Hanoi Towers of Wine

Today was a game of wine shuffling.  My hubby commented I’m playing Towers of Hanoi with the wines.  Here’s what I have to do:  I have 2 carboys of the syrah, and Paul needs those carboys back, so I need to move them into 5-gallon better bottles.  The only 5-gallon better bottles I have are […]

Lots o’ Bottling

It’s finally time to bottle the barolo that has been bulk aging since March.  I wanted to avoid bottling any of the goop that has settled out at the bottom, so I racked off the clear wine into a bucket.  I noticed a white film at the top similar to what I saw a few […]

More Weekend Wining

With four different varietals in various stages of progress, as well as the last of the 2008 merlot to bottle, every weekend is going to be quite busy for a few more weeks.  Since I was out of malic acid tests last weekend when the primitivo was racked, sulfited, and oaked, I took a sample […]

Wine Wrangling Weekend

Lots to do this weekend!  Of course, there were 2 trips to the office winery to punch down the newly pitched Petite Sirah.  By the evening, the temp was up to 78 degrees (in an air conditioned room) and there were serious caps on all of the buckets.  Then I had to deal with trying […]

Problems with Petite Sirah

I checked in with the guys yesterday, the petite sirah was due to be pitched.  In fact, it looked like it was already bubbling away, like what happened with the merlot this year.  But, it looked great — Paul added vinozyme, and the juice was a lovely inky dark purple color. Then I got a […]