Originally Posted by DougBrown
A very experienced winemaker friend of mine says that if I put 3/4 tsp. of pectic enzyme into my wine when I transferring it from the primary to the secondary it will clear faster and better. Hmmm... I'm a pretty experienced winemaker too and it doesn't make sense to me. Pectic enzyme does its work when added to the must before fermentation, not after -- yes/no? I've tried what he says and I don't notice any difference but he's pretty insistent. Comments?
The improvement in clearing/fining from using pectic enzyme, as you mentioned, occurs because positively charged grape solids are coated by negatively charged pectin molecules ... this makes them harder to get them to bind-up and to fall out of suspension. Pectic enzymes break down that “coating” and allow some the particles to expose their positive charges ... which then allows them to bind with other negative coated particles ... and they coalesce and more readily fall out of suspension and clear.
Pectic enzyme is actually a group of enzymes and most pectinase you purchase ... is actually a combination of those enzymes.
Pectic enzyme is used for multiple reasons and affects the must/wine at different times during maceration, fermentation and fining.
so back to your question ... yes, it does help to clear.