Could My Barrel Be Bad - And Is There Hope
Posted 22 July 2012 - 05:46 PM
I am going to get a lot of testing questions so I guess I'll have to check pH and acidity but I did check them in the beginning and made adjustments and adjusted pH just after ML fermentation.
Anyone got any experience with a barrel performing such voodoo on their wine?
Posted 23 July 2012 - 09:33 AM
At this point, you can try percarbonate or soda ash overnight to salvage what you have.
Posted 24 July 2012 - 07:10 AM
Posted 24 July 2012 - 10:09 AM
I'm not sure what you mean by a sharp taste. Does it smell or taste like vinegar? If so, it could be due to oxidation/contamination. Are you leaving any headspace in the barrel? How often are you topping up? Are you using a solid bung?
Posted 24 July 2012 - 10:34 AM
Acetaldehyde Smell of roasted nuts or dried out straw. Commonly associated with Sherries where these aromas are considered acceptable
Amyl-acetate Smell of "fake" candy banana flavoring
Brettanomyces Smell of barnyards, fecal and gamey horse aromas
Cork taint Smell of a damp basement, wet cardboard or newspapers and mushrooms
Diacetyl Smell of rancid butter
Ethyl acetate Smell of vinegar, paint thinner and nail polish remover
Hydrogen sulfide Smell of rotten eggs or garlic that has gone bad
Iodine Smell of moldy grapes
Lactic acid bacteria Smell of sauerkraut
Mercaptans Smell of burnt rubber and/or cooked cabbage
Oxidation Smell of cooked fruit and walnuts. Also detectable visually by premature browning or yellowing of the wine
Sorbic acid plus lactic acid bacteria Smell of crushed geranium leaves
Sulfur dioxide Smell of burnt matches. Can also come across as a pricking sensation in the nose.
Posted 29 July 2012 - 06:45 AM
I think Doyle's point on the 5 gallon and the wine getting hammered with oak holds merit but I would have expected more of a vanilla taste than the bite. Thanks Doyle for that list of aromas. The only 1 I cannot identify is the crushed geranium leaves. I may have to visit a nursery for that. LOL The others are not what I'm smelling - thankfully.
I'm going to bring a few samples to work this week and do some testing. pH, acid and the like, not drinking testing ..
I guess this was a good learning experience though I wish I could have kept the loss to less than 15 gallons. They aren't a total loss though, they're drinkable. Maybe a year in a carboy might calm things a bit, who knows. The 1 bit of advice I would give anyone that is just beginning the barrel game, if you buy identical barrels, mark them for identification. To figure out what was going on I had to experience it then mark barrels then put wine in to see which was changing. That was the only real reason I was tasting frequently. I rarely ever do that. I dig my wine from a bottle!
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