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How Long Does 2nd Fermentation Take For You?


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#1 MJRubin20

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 05:50 PM

I know the first fermenting takes between 1-2 weeks. But how long do you guys ferment for the second time? I havent yet begun making my own wine but am doing all the research now.
Interested in starting my own vineyard someday. Any help or advice in the surrounding Connecticut area would be greatly appreciated!!!

#2 Wade's Wines

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 08:24 PM

MJ,
You're starting at the right place! Welcome!
There's really only one ferment for most wine. Primary ferment is fermenting in a primary container. Then you move the mostly fermented wine into a secondary container, usually a carboy. So it's really primary (starting) container and secondary (finishing) container. But it's still the same ferment.
Also there is another kind of ferment, where malic acid is converted to lactic acid, much gentler on the tongue. But that's MLF not secondary ferment.
A great simple $3 book that explains it very well is Enjoy Home Winemaking by Frishman. You can find it on line.
The next step for you, my Friend, is to start a batch of wine! You can't know how to change a tire until you change one! Jump in, it's fun!
Wishing you the best!
Wade
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#3 redazsun

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 09:03 PM

MJ,
Welcome and I believe as Wade mentioned you are talking about Melolactic Fermentation (MLF) which is called secondary fermentation by many. It is the process of changing the Malic acid to Lactic acid and it can complete within 2 weeks or take several weeks to complete. After adding the MLB to your wine you would start testing after 2 or 3 weeks with Chromatography test kit to monitor when it is completed. Typically MLF is done on most reds and some whites depending on varietal and style.
http://www.winedefin...ermentation.htm
Ron Dickens

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John 15:5

#4 MJRubin20

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 10:34 PM

Wade's Wine,
How do I just jump right in? Dont I have to wait until September-ish to buy grapes? I would love to start now if I could! Maybe I can haha.

Redazsun,
How does someone check on their wine when its in the carboy? Is it alright to take the top off each week and test it? How do I know when it'd done at first since I havent done this before?
Interested in starting my own vineyard someday. Any help or advice in the surrounding Connecticut area would be greatly appreciated!!!

#5 Howie

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Posted 22 June 2010 - 11:50 PM

I've been making wine for over 30 years and don't know what you mean by second time fermentation. I know of yeast fermentation, where the sugars in the juice are transformed into alcohol and carbon dioxide. I know of malo-lactic fermentation, which reduces acidity by converting malic acid into lactic acid and CO2. I know of bottle fermentation, which is used to make sparkling wines. I also know of primary and secondary fermentation vessels. This refers to the types of containers used during the early and latter stages of fermentation, such as an open container with a loose fitting lid while fermenting on the skins followed by pressing into a carboy to finish.
I hate when a thread gets double posted. I usually click on the New Content button and browse from the oldest to the newest.
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#6 Tomer1

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 03:03 AM

MLf is sometimes called secondary fermentation because it became a standart in most reds.

If I were into tatoos... I would tatoo some grapes on my forarm. :P


#7 Wade's Wines

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 05:16 AM

MJ,
As you'll see looking around here, you can make wine out of just about anything. If you're set on grapes, then you might have to wait until they're in season where you live or else have them shipped from somewhere else. Also, there are kits and frozen pails of wine grapes that you can buy online all year.
The way you know when it's done with fermentation is with a hydrometer, a $5 or $6 tool (glass and breakable) and a test jar, another $2 or $3. It's essential to know what you're doing. Some of the advertisers on this Forum sell both the frozen juices and the equipment that you'll need. Once you know what you need, craigslist is also a good place to look for it.
If you have any other questions, ask away!
Wade
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The Best of Times is Now! :0)

#8 MJRubin20

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 09:10 AM

Thanks Wade!

What does a hydrometer measure? Sorry if that sounds like a dumb question.
Interested in starting my own vineyard someday. Any help or advice in the surrounding Connecticut area would be greatly appreciated!!!

#9 Howie

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 09:37 AM

A hydrometer measures the density of liquids. In wine making, two scales are used, depending on your preference. Specific Gravity (S.G.) defines pure water at 20 degC (68 degF) as 1.000. If the solution contains sugar the density will be higher because the dissolved sugar makes the solution heavier. If the solution has no sugar but has alcohol it is lighter that water, as alcohol is less dense than water. The other scale is Brix which measures the density as a percent sugar. Here is a link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrometer
Howie Hart

#10 redazsun

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 09:50 AM

MJ,
I would reading a couple books on wine making. Here is a free one to start with.
[attachment=12300:winebook.pdf]
Ron Dickens

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John 15:5

#11 DesertDance

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 10:11 AM

Sucks when everybody else said it for you! Great Advice! Take it!
Suzi

#12 Wade's Wines

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 10:48 AM

they call me "QuickDraw!" LOL
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#13 MJRubin20

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Posted 23 June 2010 - 12:21 PM

This is wonderful information guys! Thanks a lot everyone!

Im sure I will have more questions coming haha.
Interested in starting my own vineyard someday. Any help or advice in the surrounding Connecticut area would be greatly appreciated!!!

#14 vinovintner

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 06:18 AM

MJ,
Welcome to the forum. I would highly recommend that you get a copy of the book The Way to Make Wine by Sheridan Warrick. The book contains very useful information of the winemaking process and is written in language that anyone can understand. Since you live in Connecticut, you might want to explore the grapes available from M&M Wine Company located in Hartford CT. M&M has an excellent selection of fresh grapes in season. In the off season, they have a frozen must program.

#15 Wade's Wines

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 08:36 PM

... and in the words of Nike, "Just do it!"
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