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Old 09-22-2008, 07:03 PM   #1
limprizol
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Default Merlot - Questions

I am making a Merlot from fresh juice that i bought. I am going to rack it into a carboy today because it is almost done fermenting. Should i be adding anything in like oak chips? I do not want to use fining agents but i know that merlot has an oaky taste a lot of the time

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Old 09-22-2008, 07:45 PM   #2
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I would oak, but I'm not sure when. I'd probably wait until after MLF and starting the bulk aging time period.

This is all my guestimation of what I would do- I've never made wine out of fresh grape juice.

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Old 09-22-2008, 08:15 PM   #3
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I did some quick reading on Jack Keller's website, and here's his "recipe" for merlot. It uses grapes, but I'm sure the process would be the same for the pressed juice.

winemaking: requested recipes (Merlot Wine)

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Old 09-22-2008, 08:34 PM   #4
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Thanks for the help

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Old 09-22-2008, 10:32 PM   #5
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I'd wait to oak if you are using oak chips or some other oaking method other then powder. For my Merlots,Cabs, and pino noir's I like medium toast french oak. For big Zinfandels I use American oak. I usually wait until my third racking, the first racking being from primary, I let the wine clear well for at least a month with each racking if not longer. I steam my chips in a steamer basket for 10 minutes to get rid of the more bitter tannins (I dont boil like EC Kraus says) I start with 2oz except for my pinos I start with one ounce. I taste it with my wine theif every week or two and add more or rack it off if it's the flavor I like. You can always add and its hard to subtract so I prefer to go slow unless you like the taste of plywood in your wine. Good luck, Ken

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