Topic: Wine-Wizard

Oak Barrel Seepage

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I’ve certainly had the odd leaker (or three) but I’ve never experienced trans-stave leakage of the scale that you describe. Before I delve any deeper, I first of all would like to

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Allergic To Sulfites

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Certainly you can try to pasteurize (heat at a certain temperature for a certain amount of time) your wine if you like. Many foods and beverages (like milk) are so heat treated

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Can Lysozyme Arrest MLF?

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In my day job in Napa, California (as Winemaker for Garnet Vineyards as well as other consulting projects) I bottle plenty of “partial ML” Chardonnay every year and love the style. In

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Late Malolactic

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To shed light on your query, the Wine Wiz consulted the Winemaking Magic 8 Ball™ and the answer that floated to the top was, “Outlook not good.” If your 2010 Zinfandel still

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Overspiced Wine Situation

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There’s nothing like a wine with what I call “the elbows sticking out” to ruin one’s mood. Especially frustrating is when one has followed a recipe or kit instructions to the letter

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Soapy Taste In Wine

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Though tough to define as it can smell different to everyone, there is unfortunately no wine lab analysis panel you can run that says, “Yessir, you’ve got an over-abundance of Ivory Soap

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Fining Fruit Wines

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The short answer is that yes, I would absolutely cut down on the amount of clarifying agent you use if you don’t have enough wine volume for the recommended 5 gallon (19

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Perfecting Pyment

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Congrats for breaking out of the mold and taking it upon yourself to adapt a recipe to your own preferences! I always love it when readers, and my own winemaking buddies, take

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Making Dry Muscat

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Sounds tasty to me! I love a dry (or even off-dry, maybe with residual sugar of around 5 g/L), crisp Muscat wine. Historically, Muscats have been used in many wine types, from

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Fun With Wine Filtration

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The fun of filtration! I’ll deliver the bad news to you and my readers first by telling you that really no matter how tight of a pore size you use to filter

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Kombucha In My Winery?

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Just like I would not let a buddy of mine do any Brettanomyces beer-brewing experiments in my winery, so should you not do Kombucha and wine together in your kitchen (or garage)

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Stuck Fermentations

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Unfortunately, there are hundreds of possible causes of stuck and sluggish fermentations, and sometimes, even after careful investigation, we still can never understand what the cause may have been. With Mother Nature


“Fruit Floaties” — Strawberry Wine

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I just saw your picture and wow, that does indeed look like a floating brain — or two! Luckily, that is a great shot of what I would call typical “fruit floaties”

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Alternative Sweeteners

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I 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

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Empty Airlocks

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It sounds to me like some “bad bugs” (ambient bacteria or yeast cells) got into your wine. After four years of aging, having a batch infected due to a bad airlock must

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Softened Water In Wine?

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That is a wonderful question! It’s estimated that it takes anywhere from 2–10 gallons (8–38 L) of water to make a gallon (4 L) of wine. Most of that estimate is for

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Fermentation Troubles

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Hi Lauren, great question. There are so many steps along the way where a fermentation can get into trouble, or “go pear shaped” as my interns from New Zealand used to say.

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Importing Juice vs. Fresh Grapes

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Well, it seems to me that Chile to New Jersey is an awfully long haul. I often, in my blog and in this column, advocate that the distance from vineyard to crushpad

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When Life Gives You Limes Make Wine

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Very, very interesting. I have to say that the zest of 21 limes for three gallons (11 L) of liquid seems like a lot of lime-y-ness to me! I can only imagine

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Color Loss in Candy Cane Wine

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Well, well, well. Candy cane wine is one I have never heard of! However, as one of my winemaking professors always said, you can ferment just about anything as long as you

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Moldy Odor In My Wines

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Would you be surprised to know that you may be doing absolutely nothing wrong? Even though you tried to sanitize your corks (assuming you are using natural corks and not artificial corks)

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Calculating Molecular SO2

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Sulfur dioxide, or SO2, has many benefits in winemaking and has been added to wine for centuries to act as a preservative. When you add SO2 to your wine, part of it

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Exploring The Corking Options

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The choice of bottle closure is a topic that winemakers the world over debate with regularity. Every time a new bottle closure or packaging method comes out (twist off? Glass? Stainless steel

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Adding Some Sparkle To Your Wines

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Fermentation by itself is tricky but secondary fermentations for sparkling wines are especially so because your new yeast must fight against existing alcohol (which is toxic to yeast), depleted nutrition, and potentially

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Measuring Brix in Fermentation

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Like most everything in winemaking, the glib answer is, “It depends.” The real answer, however, is much more complex and as you intimate, experience can play a large part in fine-tuning your

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378 result(s) found.