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The Making of a White Wine with Liquid Yeast

Posted by Ron Goodhew, September 5th, 2011 | 4 Comments

This will be a daily step by step presentation of making one of my favourite whites, an Estate German Mosel Valley Gewurztraminer with Chablis liquid yeast.  Rather than using the dry yeast I added the Chablis liquid yeast,  after 24 hours the temperature is 70F / 20C.  You can see that with the liquid yeast there is a lot more surface activity than usual.

Day 2 - as the yeast continues to ferment the natural sugars in the juice, both alcohol and CO2 are produced.  Liquid yeast produces a lot more foam both in the primary and then in the carboy.  The temperature is 72F / 22C.

Day 7 - the SG is 1.010 so I have racked the wort into a sanitized carboy




Day 14 - The SG is .995, the temperature is 68F / 20C.  I have hit a finishing SG but I need it to continue fermentining for a while - I know this because there is still surface activity.


Day 29 - temperature is 68F / 20C, surface activity continues so I wait.




Day 45 - Sitting on the yeast bed the wine is safe if you go overtime.  Today I have added package 2, 3, 4 and then added the F-pack and then stirred.  Calgary's altitude locks the CO2 into the wine so now we start degassing.  I am working on a degassing system using a vacuum generator attached to an air compressor - more to be announced in the future.  You can see the amount of CO2 bubbles released as soon as I created a vacuum.  In 3 weeks I will rack off the sediment and bottle when the wine is clear.  Never bottle cloudy wine, it will not clear in the bottle.


Day 73 - when I use the Vacuvin there are no CO2 bubbles, the wine is clear so I am racking into a clean carboy leaving the sediment behind.

Day 111 - The German Gewurztraminer is in the middle - crystal clear, ready to filter and then rack back into the carboy for bulk ageing.  I will go a maximum of 5 months from the beginning to the end before I bottle.  Notice how much darker it is than the Austrian Gruner Veltliner on its left.  The wine to the right is a Sicilian Nero D'Avola.  Filtered the Gewurtz this week, now just letting it bulk age in the carboy.

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thomas wrote on Feb 14, 2012 11:30 AM:
What is bulk aging? And how long do you do it and for what purpose. Thanks I am new to this making the same gewurtz without liquid first batch
Ron wrote on Feb 14, 2012 12:03 PM:
First advantage is you can't drink it. The temperature remains constant with the mass. The wine ages evenly and sediments developed during aging can be left behind at bottling time. Maximum benefit time is 5 months. I leave the carboy under vacuum the entire time using the vacuvin.
Shelley wrote on Mar 17, 2012 12:40 PM:
I noticed the temp dropped from 22 c to 20 c on day 14 - is this recommended for both red and whites? I have tried to maintain a constant 22 for the full time.
Ron wrote on Mar 30, 2012 9:51 AM:
The fermentation process produces heat, as the fermentation proceeds the heat decreases, thus the drop from 22 to 20. I like to cool ferment my whites and reds so do not use heat belts. On the other hand beer wants to be kept cozy at 23.

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