Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

Discussions and questions (vintages, winemaking, etc) for those ITB. All are welcome to post.
Post Reply
Message
Author
User avatar
Tim Corliss
Posts: 1233
Joined: February 13th, 2009, 9:14 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#1 Post by Tim Corliss » September 11th, 2017, 10:11 pm

I have a 200l tank or Syrah that has been at 5 brix for two days. Cap is still rising and I can smell CO2 so I think something is still alive in there. Temp is 84 degrees. Innoculated with D254 and hydrated with nutrients as well as adding nutrients once the fermentation got going. Today is day 10 after inoculation.

I don't know what the starting brix was. The grapes were delivered during the heat wave and was likely already starting to ferment as the grapes were hot when they arrived.

A 600L tank from the same block has gone dry. Another 200l tank is hovering around 2.5 brix and also seems to be hitting a wall.
ITB

Todd Hamina
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 3665
Joined: February 3rd, 2009, 2:16 pm
Location: McMinnville, OR

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#2 Post by Todd Hamina » September 11th, 2017, 10:26 pm

Pick a supplier and follow their protocol. For example: http://www.scottlab.com/uploads/documen ... 202016.pdf
Co-Owner, Biggio Hamina Cellars
-BiggioHamina

Brian Ojalvo
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 87
Joined: February 2nd, 2017, 10:20 pm
Location: Sonoma County
Contact:

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#3 Post by Brian Ojalvo » September 11th, 2017, 11:07 pm

I would suggest racking the free run and pressing off skins immediately. This ferment is feeling sluggish. Sitting around waiting for this ferment to magically finish to dryness is not gonna happen if been stuck at 5 brix for a few days. Put all wine in a tank and find a restart protocol. Uvaferm 43 is the yeast I have had most success with.
West of Temperance Winery

User avatar
William Segui
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 2580
Joined: January 27th, 2009, 12:36 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#4 Post by William Segui » September 12th, 2017, 5:17 am

Brian Ojalvo wrote:I would suggest racking the free run and pressing off skins immediately. This ferment is feeling sluggish. Sitting around waiting for this ferment to magically finish to dryness is not gonna happen if been stuck at 5 brix for a few days. Put all wine in a tank and find a restart protocol. Uvaferm 43 is the yeast I have had most success with.
This. I'd press off the skins, if that doesn't do it then look into a restart.

Ed Kurtzman
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 683
Joined: January 29th, 2009, 10:10 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#5 Post by Ed Kurtzman » September 12th, 2017, 6:26 pm

Tim, have you pressed the 600 liter tank yet? If not, press that and put the free run juice from the stuck smaller tanks on the dry skins. You can also roll the dice and put the dry wine from the 600 liter tank on top of the sweet skins in the smaller tanks. There's no guarantee it will work, so that 2nd step is a risk. No risk to the first suggestion. I've seen it work with Pinot before. Much, much easier than a restart.

User avatar
Ian Brand
Posts: 842
Joined: January 21st, 2010, 6:50 am

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#6 Post by Ian Brand » September 13th, 2017, 6:25 pm

Ed Kurtzman, wine yoda.
ITB - Le P'tit Paysan, La Marea, I. Brand & Family
Salinas, CA

User avatar
Tim Corliss
Posts: 1233
Joined: February 13th, 2009, 9:14 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#7 Post by Tim Corliss » September 14th, 2017, 10:06 am

Ed Kurtzman wrote:Tim, have you pressed the 600 liter tank yet? If not, press that and put the free run juice from the stuck smaller tanks on the dry skins. You can also roll the dice and put the dry wine from the 600 liter tank on top of the sweet skins in the smaller tanks. There's no guarantee it will work, so that 2nd step is a risk. No risk to the first suggestion. I've seen it work with Pinot before. Much, much easier than a restart.
I did unfortunately :-( I pressed the dry tanks yesterday. Planning to press the stuck tank today and keep that wine separate.

I tried to move some must from the dry 600L tank to the stuck one earlier this week. Brix dropped to 4! long way to go still. It sounds like I'm gonna have to try one of the restart protocols, ug.

is there an easy restart protocol, or are they all a PITA?
ITB

Eric Lundblad
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 1654
Joined: January 28th, 2009, 2:36 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#8 Post by Eric Lundblad » September 14th, 2017, 2:12 pm

Tim Corliss wrote:
Ed Kurtzman wrote:Tim, have you pressed the 600 liter tank yet? If not, press that and put the free run juice from the stuck smaller tanks on the dry skins. You can also roll the dice and put the dry wine from the 600 liter tank on top of the sweet skins in the smaller tanks. There's no guarantee it will work, so that 2nd step is a risk. No risk to the first suggestion. I've seen it work with Pinot before. Much, much easier than a restart.
I did unfortunately :-( I pressed the dry tanks yesterday. Planning to press the stuck tank today and keep that wine separate.

I tried to move some must from the dry 600L tank to the stuck one earlier this week. Brix dropped to 4! long way to go still. It sounds like I'm gonna have to try one of the restart protocols, ug.

is there an easy restart protocol, or are they all a PITA?
Another/reliable approach:

1. Mix yeast hulls (yeast hulls, not opti-red/etc) into the stuck wine. I forget the amt to add, but there are lots of recommendations out there for this. This'll help bind to 'bad' stuff. Don't add other things, esp nutrients since nutrients in a dry wine will lead to unwanted bacterial/brett growth.

2. Get a small amt of just crushed juice, 1 or 2 cups is fine (if you don't have access to freshly pressed grapes, a cup of bottled organic apple juice will work fine). Add some Uvaferm 43 (15-20grams). When it's beginning to fermenting well (the next day at room temp usually), pour it into a corner of the stuck wine. Pour slowly/carefully to minimize the mixing with the stuck wine. This will allow the yeast to gradually adjust to the 'problems' of the stuck wine and ferment that.
Ladd Cellars
Winemaker & Owner

User avatar
Tim Corliss
Posts: 1233
Joined: February 13th, 2009, 9:14 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#9 Post by Tim Corliss » September 14th, 2017, 4:08 pm

Eric Lundblad wrote:
Tim Corliss wrote:
Ed Kurtzman wrote: Another/reliable approach:

1. Mix yeast hulls (yeast hulls, not opti-red/etc) into the stuck wine. I forget the amt to add, but there are lots of recommendations out there for this. This'll help bind to 'bad' stuff. Don't add other things, esp nutrients since nutrients in a dry wine will lead to unwanted bacterial/brett growth.

2. Get a small amt of just crushed juice, 1 or 2 cups is fine (if you don't have access to freshly pressed grapes, a cup of bottled organic apple juice will work fine). Add some Uvaferm 43 (15-20grams). When it's beginning to fermenting well (the next day at room temp usually), pour it into a corner of the stuck wine. Pour slowly/carefully to minimize the mixing with the stuck wine. This will allow the yeast to gradually adjust to the 'problems' of the stuck wine and ferment that.
ooohh.. that sounds like a MUCH easier process. The one suggested by Scott Labs sounds very challenging to execute properly.

A sincere thank you to everyone here on this thread who've chimed in to help.

I know I have been scarcely active on the board over the last year or so. Its a luxury to have access to folks like you guys who are willing to share your expertise!
ITB

Eric Lundblad
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 1654
Joined: January 28th, 2009, 2:36 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#10 Post by Eric Lundblad » September 14th, 2017, 9:34 pm

Adding Lysozyme to the stuck wine (as Scott Labs suggests), as you're adding the yeast hulls is worthwhile (only if your wine is above 3.7pH tho).

And rehydrating the yeast with GoFerm (vitamins only, no nitrogen...that I'm aware of) seems reasonable. Uvaferm 43 is a pretty robust restart yeast, but anything to help it along is a good thing.
Ladd Cellars
Winemaker & Owner

User avatar
Kim Z
Posts: 117
Joined: May 8th, 2017, 9:33 am
Location: California

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#11 Post by Kim Z » September 15th, 2017, 8:48 am

Eric Lundblad wrote:Adding Lysozyme to the stuck wine (as Scott Labs suggests), as you're adding the yeast hulls is worthwhile (only if your wine is above 3.7pH tho)
What about MLF? Unless MLB was co-inoculated and completed, wouldn't lysozyme preclude MLF?
K*I*M Zussm@n

Eric Lundblad
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 1654
Joined: January 28th, 2009, 2:36 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#12 Post by Eric Lundblad » September 15th, 2017, 9:10 am

It depends on how much you add. According to the Lysozyme folks, if you add a moderate amt the effect is temporary. So you might have to wait a while before inoculating for ML (Lysozyme instructions will tell you how long). Tim's stuck ferment has been going for a while now, so there's a reasonable risk that other things are growing, MLB being likely...so seems like a reasonable trade off to get it through.

Just to note again tho, apparently Lysozyme has no effect below 3.7pH.
Ladd Cellars
Winemaker & Owner

User avatar
Kim Z
Posts: 117
Joined: May 8th, 2017, 9:33 am
Location: California

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#13 Post by Kim Z » September 15th, 2017, 9:18 am

Good info Eric (and all). Thanks
K*I*M Zussm@n

Ed Kurtzman
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 683
Joined: January 29th, 2009, 10:10 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#14 Post by Ed Kurtzman » September 16th, 2017, 2:42 pm

I'm going to try the dry pomace method today with some stuck Zinfandel. One of my custom crush clients has Zin that went dry, and it's from the same vineyard as my stuck Zinfandel. The client is pressing today, so I asked him to save me whatever comes out of the press after he's finished. I'll add that to the stuck bins.

User avatar
Randy Bowman
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 9489
Joined: January 27th, 2009, 2:23 pm
Location: Napa, CA

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#15 Post by Randy Bowman » September 16th, 2017, 7:11 pm

Stuck is better than when the natural yeasts take off without you:

https://www.facebook.com/dukesfollywine ... 285586121/
IN THE BUSINESS SHILL: An associate of a person selling goods, who pretends no association to the seller and assumes the air of an enthusiastic customer.

Ed Kurtzman
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 683
Joined: January 29th, 2009, 10:10 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#16 Post by Ed Kurtzman » September 18th, 2017, 11:00 pm

Randy, thanks for posting this. That's an amazing video. I'm sure there have been many winery injuries because someone hard bunged or clamped down a cap on an active fermentation. I have a friend who cut himself in the face opening a gassy keg once. And two innocent bystander friends of mine got blasted with fermenting saignee Zinfandel last week because someone didn't know they needed to use a fermentation bung instead of a hard bung. I decided after watching this that I'm going to use the "pole method" to open any keg or stainless drum I'm suspect of. That's the best thing I've learned this vintage.

I added the dry Zin skins to my stuck fermenters yesterday. I'll report back on how they progress. They seem pretty active.

Todd Hamina
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 3665
Joined: February 3rd, 2009, 2:16 pm
Location: McMinnville, OR

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#17 Post by Todd Hamina » September 23rd, 2017, 12:49 pm

There is always just getting some straight up glucose too.
Co-Owner, Biggio Hamina Cellars
-BiggioHamina

Andy Lynch
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 7
Joined: November 16th, 2016, 12:24 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#18 Post by Andy Lynch » October 1st, 2017, 3:00 pm

Tim, I see you're in Livermore. I can give you a bucket of good lees if your ferment hasn't finished by now.
Last edited by Andy Lynch on October 2nd, 2017, 8:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
ITB - Wente Family Estates, Murrieta's Well, and Lynch Wine Company

User avatar
Tim Corliss
Posts: 1233
Joined: February 13th, 2009, 9:14 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#19 Post by Tim Corliss » October 1st, 2017, 8:30 pm

So, made the right connection at work and got lb work done on this, when it stuck

Alchohol 14.4%
RS 3.87 g/100 ml
PH 3.3
TA .65 g/100ml
VA .063 g/100ml

On my last attempt to restart, I added water to lower by 1.5 brix. Didn't help.
ITB

User avatar
Tim Corliss
Posts: 1233
Joined: February 13th, 2009, 9:14 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#20 Post by Tim Corliss » October 1st, 2017, 8:31 pm

Ed, did the pomace attempt work out?
ITB

Ed Kurtzman
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 683
Joined: January 29th, 2009, 10:10 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#21 Post by Ed Kurtzman » October 3rd, 2017, 6:42 am

Tim, so far so good, but it's painfully slow! Yesterday, each 1 ton fermenter went under 1 brix. I don't know if the dry pomace helped, hurt or had no effect. If they ever get to -1.4 brix, I'll call it a success. Today is the 1 month anniversary of the fruit being picked. I probably should have pressed and done a traditional restart. However, we had bled off one barrel of Zin, during the first week, so that the fermenters wouldn't overflow. That one barrel got stuck at 4 brix, which is just about ideal for a restart starter. We tried getting that going with UVA Ferm 43, but a week after trying that, it's still at 3.2 brix, and the fermenters are well below that. If and when the fermenters go dry, and if the barrel is still around 3 brix, I may hit the barrel with high proof and turn it into an "off dry" Zin Port.

Ed Kurtzman
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 683
Joined: January 29th, 2009, 10:10 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#22 Post by Ed Kurtzman » October 24th, 2017, 8:22 pm

I had almost given up last week, but was pressing some Syrah that went completely dry. I put the free run Zin on top of the dry Syrah skins, then things started happening again. By this morning, the bins were down to -0.8 and -0.9, so I put the Zin in the press on top of dry Grenache skins, and voila. I have 4 barrels of almost dry Zin, with tiny percentages of Syrah and Grenache mixed in. I'll have to convince myself the Syrah and Grenache don't make up more than 5% of the total blend so I can use the vineyard name on the Zin.

User avatar
Tim Corliss
Posts: 1233
Joined: February 13th, 2009, 9:14 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#23 Post by Tim Corliss » November 27th, 2017, 2:12 pm

Ed Kurtzman wrote:I had almost given up last week, but was pressing some Syrah that went completely dry. I put the free run Zin on top of the dry Syrah skins, then things started happening again. By this morning, the bins were down to -0.8 and -0.9, so I put the Zin in the press on top of dry Grenache skins, and voila. I have 4 barrels of almost dry Zin, with tiny percentages of Syrah and Grenache mixed in. I'll have to convince myself the Syrah and Grenache don't make up more than 5% of the total blend so I can use the vineyard name on the Zin.
Ed that is awesome, great to hear. Four barrels is a lot of wine that was saved.

I punted on mine, after six weeks with no success, I waved the white flag and admitted defeat [truce.gif]
ITB

User avatar
mattcitrang
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1868
Joined: October 8th, 2011, 8:48 am

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#24 Post by mattcitrang » November 27th, 2017, 3:00 pm

Tim Corliss wrote:
Ed Kurtzman wrote:I had almost given up last week, but was pressing some Syrah that went completely dry. I put the free run Zin on top of the dry Syrah skins, then things started happening again. By this morning, the bins were down to -0.8 and -0.9, so I put the Zin in the press on top of dry Grenache skins, and voila. I have 4 barrels of almost dry Zin, with tiny percentages of Syrah and Grenache mixed in. I'll have to convince myself the Syrah and Grenache don't make up more than 5% of the total blend so I can use the vineyard name on the Zin.
Ed that is awesome, great to hear. Four barrels is a lot of wine that was saved.

I punted on mine, after six weeks with no success, I waved the white flag and admitted defeat [truce.gif]
I’m not ITB but I’m curious. What did you do with it?

User avatar
Tim Corliss
Posts: 1233
Joined: February 13th, 2009, 9:14 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#25 Post by Tim Corliss » November 27th, 2017, 3:24 pm

mattcitrang wrote:
Tim Corliss wrote:
Ed Kurtzman wrote:I had almost given up last week, but was pressing some Syrah that went completely dry. I put the free run Zin on top of the dry Syrah skins, then things started happening again. By this morning, the bins were down to -0.8 and -0.9, so I put the Zin in the press on top of dry Grenache skins, and voila. I have 4 barrels of almost dry Zin, with tiny percentages of Syrah and Grenache mixed in. I'll have to convince myself the Syrah and Grenache don't make up more than 5% of the total blend so I can use the vineyard name on the Zin.
Ed that is awesome, great to hear. Four barrels is a lot of wine that was saved.

I punted on mine, after six weeks with no success, I waved the white flag and admitted defeat [truce.gif]
I’m not ITB but I’m curious. What did you do with it?
Nothing.
ITB

Benjamin CALAIS
Posts: 9
Joined: June 1st, 2012, 3:36 pm

Stuck fermentation, what do I do?

#26 Post by Benjamin CALAIS » December 17th, 2017, 9:17 pm

This was my first year dealing with stuck fermentations (high alcohol conditions, and probably too bone headed to put water in 28 brix must) and I'll say that the Scottlab protocol with Reskue/UVAFERM 43 Restart worked wonder on every wine that was stuck/sluggish. Sure it's painful to execute but close to bulletproof in my limited experience including on 16%+ alc wines.

Post Reply

Return to “Cellar Rats (ITB)”