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Old 06-29-2009, 11:13 PM   #1
seasonsofstrange
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Default Sulphur smell

Hi, this is my first time on the forum and my second adventure in brewing (first was a cider that turned out well). I decided to try a kind of unusual recipe I found for black tea wine (winemaking: requested recipes (Black Tea Wine)).

So, I pitched the yeast in the primary last night, the airlock was bubbling this morning, and when I came home after work today, it was going pretty furiously. I took a smell from my blow-off tube (I'm using a homemade airlock) and it has a STRONG bready, sulfur kind of smell. I'm using Red Star Montrachet yeast. I thought I sanitized everything well, but I'm worried I might have bacterial contamination. I saw some beer forums on the internet that said sulfur smells are normal during fermentation, but I also read something about how Hydrogen Sulfide can cause a rotten egg smell and ruin the wine. Should I be worried?

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Old 06-29-2009, 11:19 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by seasonsofstrange View Post
Hi, this is my first time on the forum and my second adventure in brewing (first was a cider that turned out well). I decided to try a kind of unusual recipe I found for black tea wine (winemaking: requested recipes (Black Tea Wine)).

So, I pitched the yeast in the primary last night, the airlock was bubbling this morning, and when I came home after work today, it was going pretty furiously. I took a smell from my blow-off tube (I'm using a homemade airlock) and it has a STRONG bready, sulfur kind of smell. I'm using Red Star Montrachet yeast. I thought I sanitized everything well, but I'm worried I might have bacterial contamination. I saw some beer forums on the internet that said sulfur smells are normal during fermentation, but I also read something about how Hydrogen Sulfide can cause a rotten egg smell and ruin the wine. Should I be worried?
H2S is bad, and can ruin the wine, but it's probably just a normal fermentation smell you have going on.

You're using an airlock? No need in primary. Take it off, and stir up the must well with a sanitized spoon or a long plastic dowel (sanitized) and then just cover it with a clean towel. You WANT oxygen in there, until the SG gets to be about 1.020 when you can rack it to secondary and then airlock. That will help with the odor, and give the yeast some oxygen so it won't be so stressed.
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Old 06-30-2009, 04:07 AM   #3
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Montrachet is semi-notorious for producing sulphur in apple based musts, I imagine it would do the same from time to time in other musts too. Regards, GF.

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Old 06-30-2009, 10:27 PM   #4
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I've never had beer or wine ferment that didn't smell funky.
Mead usually doesn't get too crazy though unless you're making a pyment, melomel, metheglin, or other flavorings.

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