Thursday, September 24, 2009

Wines I'm Making: Harvested and crushed 321 pounds of Zinfandel

Harvested the neighbor's Zinfandel grapes today. We took in and crushed 321lbs of grapes. We had to pick a little earlier than would have been ideal because of raccoon losses and because the grapes were not watered much, so the sugar was rising more as a result of dehydration than because of maturity. Still, the must tests at 23.2 Brix and 1.090 by the hydrometer with a pH of 3.6--not too bad. Sulfited to around 55ppm. Will inoculate with yeast tomorrow. This will be my first time making Zinfandel. The Cabernet and Sangiovese grapes in our own back yard have been better cared for. I expect to harvest them in the next week or so. Above is a photo of my grape-stained hand, looking as if cast in bronze.

Following day: Inoculated the must at around 4:30 with Rhone yeast L2226. Must tested at 1.091 by hydrometer, pH of 3.66, and total acidity of 1.080, at 70 degrees. That translates into a temperature-adjusted Brix of 22.3 for potential alcohol of 12.9%--quite respectable.

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