Alternative Sweeteners, Pomace Compost, and Stuck Fermentations: Wine Wizard

QI grow and make Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot in southwest Idaho. The season is intense but short. In order to reach decent ripeness (~25 °Brix), I have been growing with a very high leaf-to-cluster ratio. The wine is fairly good but has high pH values. I adjust the must with tartaric acid to an acceptable value (~3.7), but malolactic fermen-tation always drives it over 4.0. I’m not sure what causes the high pH — soil composition, leaf ratio, or a combination of both. To bring down the pH I have to add so much acid it unbalances the wine. If I add a little sweetener it does make it quite drinkable. Can I use Splenda or stevia at bottling or will that breakdown and ferment like sugar? Your thoughts will be greatly appreciated.Daniel PageCouncil, Idaho AI hear you on the high pH/high TA unbalanced wine issue. I myself have dealt with some vineyards and some wine lots where I have had to add so much tartaric to high pH musts just to keep the pH below 3.85 after malolactic is