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Old 03-11-2012, 05:42 PM   #1
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Default Plum wine does not clarify

Hi folks,

I started my first plum wine back in october and it fully stabilized in December. By now (March), I would have expected the wine to be relatively clear. However, it still looks as mucked up as the day I racked it from primary to secondary. My initial recipe included a fair quantity of pectic enzyme so I don't think that's the issue. I have since put it some bentonite and it has had no effect.

I currently have access to chitine, isinglass, egg albumine and sparkalloid but knowing that fining agents will alter the taste of wine in different ways, I'm wondering which to use, if any. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

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Old 03-11-2012, 06:23 PM   #2
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Hi folks,

I started my first plum wine back in october and it fully stabilized in December. By now (March), I would have expected the wine to be relatively clear. However, it still looks as mucked up as the day I racked it from primary to secondary. My initial recipe included a fair quantity of pectic enzyme so I don't think that's the issue. I have since put it some bentonite and it has had no effect.

I currently have access to chitine, isinglass, egg albumine and sparkalloid but knowing that fining agents will alter the taste of wine in different ways, I'm wondering which to use, if any. Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
In order to know what to use, it's helpful to know what is causing the haze. Since it's been there from the beginning, I'm leaning towards pectin haze. Even with pectic enzyme, sometimes you can have a pectin haze.

The first thing to do is to put it someplace cold. Often just dropping the temperature causes clearing. After that, without knowing the cause of the haze, I'd have to say that the best fining for this case would be SuperKleer (KC). The reason is that what is causing your haze is either positively charged, or negatively charged. Adding the wrong fining will make the haze worse. SuperKleer is a two step fining process, with both types of finings added at different times, to correct whatever may be causing the haze. But try chilling the wine first.
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Old 03-11-2012, 06:35 PM   #3
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Thanks Yooper,

Already have. About 2 weeks after the fermentation seemed fully completed, I put the carboy in an unheated portion of my basement where it has been for about 6 weeks and where the ambiant temperature is about 55F. I'll try to get the suggested product and report back for forum archive purposes. Thanks!

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Old 03-11-2012, 06:40 PM   #4
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Forgot to say also that I've already put bentonite which has a negative charge, with no visible effect. Would SuperKleer still be indicated (don't know that product)?

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Old 03-11-2012, 07:25 PM   #5
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Thanks Yooper,

Already have. About 2 weeks after the fermentation seemed fully completed, I put the carboy in an unheated portion of my basement where it has been for about 6 weeks and where the ambiant temperature is about 55F. I'll try to get the suggested product and report back for forum archive purposes. Thanks!
You can try to drop the temperature one more time. Even a drop of 10 degrees might cause the haze to drop. I'd give that a try- maybe in an ice chest? I really think that would work.
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Old 03-11-2012, 07:31 PM   #6
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Forgot to say also that I've already put bentonite which has a negative charge, with no visible effect. Would SuperKleer still be indicated (don't know that product)?
Yes, as the cause of the haze isn't clear (get it? sorry. ).

Anyway, here's a tidbit from Jack Keller's website on this issue: "The most common positively charged (+) particulate is protein, although some metallic compounds also carry positive charges. Protein is easily removed using negatively charged (-) fining agents such as tannin, yeast, bentonite, and Kieselsol. There are, however, numerous negatively charged particulates, including tannin, phenolics, anthocyanins, yeast, and bacteria. These are removed using positively charged fining agents such as gelatin, albumin, casein, Isinglass, chitin (Chitosan), and Sparkolloid. Just a cursory look at these groupings should lead to the realization that red wines, with their natural (or added) tannin, should not suffer from haze caused by proteins, but white wines easily could. This is why commercial white wines are routinely protein stabilized with bentonite fining and red wines are not. Young red wines, when cloudy at all, usually can trace their cloudiness to pectin or a negatively charged particulate."

For more: http://winemaking.jackkeller.net/finishin.asp

SuperKleer has both chitosan and kieselsol, but in two separate steps. In often works when nothing else has. That's why wine kits usually have SuperKleer- works well, with only two steps.
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