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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Wine Making Forum > Too Sweet Pinot Noir
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Old 06-29-2012, 04:43 AM   #1
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Default Too Sweet Pinot Noir

I am new to wine making and this is my third wine, a Pinot Noir from a kit, but it is way too sweet. I followed the directions given. I unfortunately put in the Kieselsol and Chitosan thinking the wine was ok to finish. When I took the final SG it was 1.104. The starting SG was 1.139. Is there anything I can do to fix it? Also, if I figured the alcohol correctly, it is only 3%. The alcohol started at 18% and ended at 15%, which if I figured it correctly leaves only 3%. Thanks for any help you can give.

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Old 06-29-2012, 02:42 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by ciaodebc View Post
I am new to wine making and this is my third wine, a Pinot Noir from a kit, but it is way too sweet. I followed the directions given. I unfortunately put in the Kieselsol and Chitosan thinking the wine was ok to finish. When I took the final SG it was 1.104. The starting SG was 1.139. Is there anything I can do to fix it? Also, if I figured the alcohol correctly, it is only 3%. The alcohol started at 18% and ended at 15%, which if I figured it correctly leaves only 3%. Thanks for any help you can give.
I don't think your readings are correct. That kit should start at about 1.100 and finish at .990 or so. I assume you added water, up to 6 gallons at the beginning? And then it fermented for a week? When you checked the SG when racking the wine the first time at about week 2, what was the SG then?

There isn't any possibly way that wine is at 1.104 now- it shouldn't have even started that high! When you take a sample, I assume you fill a hydrometer test jar, and gently drop the hydrometer in so that it doesn't touch the sides? I'd check another reading right away and let us know what it is!
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Old 06-29-2012, 08:12 PM   #3
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Thank you for responding. Wish I were wrong. I tested it over and over again before and again today. The readings for SG started at 1.138 and is now 1.104, the Sugar Balling started at 32 and is now 26, and the % Alcohol started at 18% and is now 15%. With this kit you don't add water or sugar, just the included yeast, Bentonite, Metabisulfite, Vit C, Sorbate, Kieselsol, and Chitosan when told to according to the instructions. The kit makes 15 750 ml bottles. I will be happy to send you a sample so you can check the readings for yourself. I also made a Pinot Chardonnay, which readings were good and it tastes okay.

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Old 06-29-2012, 08:28 PM   #4
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Thanks for responding. Wish I were wrong. The SG was 1.138 when I started and is now 1.104, the % Alcohol started at 18% and is now 15%, and the Sugar/Balling started at 32 and is now 26. With this kit you don't add sugar or water, just the Yeast, Bentonite, Metabisulfite, Vit C, Sorbate, Kieselsol, and Chitosan when told to do so in the instructions. The kit makes 15 750 ml bottles. I tested it over and over before and again today and keep getting the same readings. Maybe there was too much sugar to begin with and the yeast got stuck, even though it obviously worked somewhat. I will be happy to send you a sample so you can test it yourself. I also made Pinot Chardonnay and it tested ok and tastes ok.

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Old 06-29-2012, 08:59 PM   #5
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Sorry for the double post. Something happened with the first one and I thought it didn't post so I wrote and posted the second one. When I saw there were 2 of the same posts, I tried deleting one, but couldn't figure out how. Sorry again.

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Old 06-29-2012, 10:38 PM   #6
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You did not say that you actually tasted it ... did it actually taste too sweet and with no alcohol bite??

IF it did ... and you are in fact reading the hydrometer properly ... then the concentrate they sent needed to be cut with water ... whether faulty directions or whatever.

The pinot was likely intended to be 10 to 12% ... not 18%.... there is no way that the concentrate was meant to be used undiluted and as high as it appears on your readings.

So ... if it is just a matter of diluting it with water down to where it should be ... and if you already added all the yeast you have on hand ... and did NOT yet add the packet with the metabisulfite and especially not the *sorbate* (!!) ... your best bet without going out and picking up more yeast will be to add water approx 25% by volume ... so if you have two gallons of wine/concentrate in your bucket currently you’d add ½ gallon of water etc ... which should take your final abv back down to about 10% or so when fermented to dry.

Then with the water added, stir or shake the hell out of it to get some oxygen back in and hopefully get the yeast unstuck. As you’ve removed the yeast from suspension with the chitosan/kieselsol you should continue to shake it or stir it every couple hours for a minute until it starts back up. Hopefully if it starts back up it will remain active for long enough before falling out of suspension to get further along in the fermentation.

If it just won’t re-start ... and you have NOT added the sorbate at any time ... then you may need to let it settle for a couple days - rack the wine back off the yeast sediment (with a siphon) get more yeast and try fermenting it anew with fresh yeast.

IF you did add the sorbate ... it is probably not recoverable.
But if the manufacturers directions were faulty (re-read them very carefully) or the product for that matter was faulty, they very well may be willing to send you a new kit.

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Old 06-30-2012, 02:12 AM   #7
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What brand kit? Sounds lika a port or ice wine kit.

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Old 06-30-2012, 02:44 AM   #8
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Thanks for replying. All the ingredients have been added, including the sorbate. The instructions say in large letters: DO NOT ADD WATER. The brand is a DIAMANTI Dessert Wine and the grape is a late harvest Pinot Noir. The wine tastes sweet and thick with very little alcohol bite. I think the Sugar/Balling number of 26 is high for a finished product. What do you think? From the posts, it sounds like there is not too much I can do. I have been trying to call the company and left a message. I have yet to hear back from them. If anyone else has any suggestions, I would like to hear from you. Thanks.

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Old 06-30-2012, 02:47 AM   #9
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It's a dessert wine. That's how it's supposed to be. Sounds like you bought the wrong kit.

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Old 06-30-2012, 07:02 AM   #10
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I know dessert wines are supposed to be sweet. However, the alcohol is about 4% which cannot be right. Hence, something went wrong with the fermentation process. The alcohol content should be higher.

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