Drew France — Middletown, Connecticut asks,
I have a 59-gallon (223-L) batch of a 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 50% old vine Zinfandel blend that is in oak. I pressed it in the fall with my stepdad. I used his family recipe, utilizing wild yeast from grapes to ferment it. Everything looks, smells, and tastes great with a delightful fruity nose, but it is only testing at 9% alcohol. His batch (same process) is at 15% alcohol. The only difference in the two wines is that mine was racked from glass to oak and placed in my cellar after two months. Fermentation seemed to slow a few days after. He wants me to add 100 proof vodka to stabilize it, but I would rather not turn it into a Port style. Will simply raising the temperature of wine restart fermentation, or do I need to pitch yeast? I really don’t want to lose all this beautiful wine. Please help.