How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Jack » Wed, 08 Aug 2007 09:38:27



Thanks to the comments from the group, my pH meter appeared last week
from e-bay. Micorbiologist friend helped with explanations, calibration
and calibration solutions.

And I must comment on the wonderfully helpful and polite character of
the posters in the group here. And the occasional tongue-in-cheek humour
such as seen in the responses to our magnum reloader a couple of weeks
back! It's quite refreshing when compared with (or contrasted to) the
behaviour on a few other groups I visit.

Back to the meter - does it ever aid in TA measurements!

It's also giving me some interesting insights in other areas. After a
rave review a few weeks back about Superstore cranberry***tail wine, I
thought it was worth trying. So put on a couple of gallons (4
half-gallon batches trying different combinations of sugars etc) in
mid-June.

Most of my wines have stopped bubbling after 3 to 4 weeks, and have been
racked. The cranberry***tail batches are still bubbling after 7 weeks.
One stopped a couple of days ago, so racked it.

SG .997, TA 5.25 pH  1.33 on first go; friend said he'd never seen such
a low reading. Recalibrated meter, pH 1.48.......

This probably explains the slow fermentation process.

A couple of others are 2.3 - 2.75. And I believe that they should be a
bit over 3 from the literature.

None of my reference material is clear on corrective measures.

Suggestions?

Thanks.

jack

 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by AxisOfBeagle » Wed, 08 Aug 2007 12:23:20


a pH reading of 1.33 / 1.48? Also - explain which metric you are using
for TA - most of the winemaking reference material I am familiar with
uses weight / volume (grams / liter) and typical wines would be .4% to
1.0% --- if you are expressing with a different metric, possibly your
reading is the same as .525 ---- or, as with your pH, your acid
readings are "off the charts" (metaphorically speaking).

Personally, I suspect a faulty pH reading. The levels you describe are
two orders of magnitude more acidic than 'typical' wine range. Those
readings are more acidic than, say, a lime. I mistrust your pH reading
because it seems unlikely, to me, that your yeasts would be effective
in that environment (need a resident microbiologist to speak to that).

I'll be curious to read other responses -

Quote:
>  SG .997, TA 5.25 pH  1.33 on first go; friend said he'd never seen
> sucha low reading. Recalibrated meter, pH 1.48.......
>  This probably explains the slow fermentation process.
>  A couple of others are 2.3 - 2.75. And I believe that they should be
> abit over 3 from the literature.

--
I'm using an evaluation license of nemo since 73 days.
You should really try it!
http://www.malcom-mac.com/nemo

 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Jack » Fri, 10 Aug 2007 10:03:57


Faulty pH reading. Microbio friend came up with some pH 4.0 buffer
solution, and meter was about .9 low - today's reading 2.54.

And you're right about the TA too - my number was ml of sodium hydroxide
solution needed.

So the pH is still below 3; is this significant? Other than contributing to
the very slow fermentation....

Jack

Quote:

> a pH reading of 1.33 / 1.48? Also - explain which metric you are using
> for TA - most of the winemaking reference material I am familiar with
> uses weight / volume (grams / liter) and typical wines would be .4% to
> 1.0% --- if you are expressing with a different metric, possibly your
> reading is the same as .525 ---- or, as with your pH, your acid
> readings are "off the charts" (metaphorically speaking).

> Personally, I suspect a faulty pH reading. The levels you describe are
> two orders of magnitude more acidic than 'typical' wine range. Those
> readings are more acidic than, say, a lime. I mistrust your pH reading
> because it seems unlikely, to me, that your yeasts would be effective
> in that environment (need a resident microbiologist to speak to that).

> I'll be curious to read other responses -

> >  SG .997, TA 5.25 pH  1.33 on first go; friend said he'd never seen
> > sucha low reading. Recalibrated meter, pH 1.48.......

> >  This probably explains the slow fermentation process.

> >  A couple of others are 2.3 - 2.75. And I believe that they should be
> > abit over 3 from the literature.

> --

> I'm using an evaluation license of nemo since 73 days.
> You should really try it!
> http://www.malcom-mac.com/nemo

 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Dirty Harr » Sat, 11 Aug 2007 02:52:19


Jack, I am happy to hear someone else is trying out my idea!  I concur with
the slow fermentation, I have a carboy that's about 2 months and there are
still tiny bubbles rising up.  I want to bring some to the lake to share
with my family so I'm going to check the SG today hopefully stabilize it and
degas.  The wine is pretty "tart" tasting, what I did with some of it before
was add 100% natural raspberry syrup to some for a drink a few people
referred to as "Kool-Aid" ...as in it goes down faster then kool aid heheh.
Can't wait to hear how yours turns out and how you like it.  Are you in
Canada or the US and did you end up going with 100% pure cran or a cranberry
***tail(grape juice added)?
 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Dirty Harr » Sat, 11 Aug 2007 03:02:59


One more quick question, did you use yeast nutrients and if so how much?
 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Jack » Sat, 11 Aug 2007 09:45:20


It's a cranberry***ktail - the label's gone, so not sure what else was in
the 4 litre jugs. I added some nutrient - about 1 tsp per gal; no grape.
They are a Superstore product - a Canadian grocery chain. And I am in NB,
Canada.

It's very tart and flat at the moment - about to bring up TA by adding a
couple of tsp/gal of tartaric and citric acids to see what that does.

Quote:

> One more quick question, did you use yeast nutrients and if so how much?

 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Joe Sallusti » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 01:25:10



Quote:
> It's a cranberry***ktail - the label's gone, so not sure what else was in
> the 4 litre jugs. I added some nutrient - about 1 tsp per gal; no grape.
> They are a Superstore product - a Canadian grocery chain. And I am in NB,
> Canada.

> It's very tart and flat at the moment - about to bring up TA by adding a
> couple of tsp/gal of tartaric and citric acids to see what that does.


> > One more quick question, did you use yeast nutrients and if so how much?- Hide quoted text -

> - Show quoted text -

Whoa.  I wouldn't add acid here, if anything you may want to consider
honey.    Cranberries are mostly citric acid, 1.4% (14g/l) is normal.
that explains the TA in the 2.4 range.  If your wine is tart pull a
sample and add sweetener, sugar, honey, whatever you like.  Adding
acid will just make it worse.

Joe

 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Dirty Harr » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 02:59:53



Quote:

>> It's a cranberry***ktail - the label's gone, so not sure what else was
>> in
>> the 4 litre jugs. I added some nutrient - about 1 tsp per gal; no grape.
>> They are a Superstore product - a Canadian grocery chain. And I am in NB,
>> Canada.

>> It's very tart and flat at the moment - about to bring up TA by adding a
>> couple of tsp/gal of tartaric and citric acids to see what that does.


>> > One more quick question, did you use yeast nutrients and if so how
>> > much?- Hide quoted text -

>> - Show quoted text -

> Whoa.  I wouldn't add acid here, if anything you may want to consider
> honey.    Cranberries are mostly citric acid, 1.4% (14g/l) is normal.
> that explains the TA in the 2.4 range.  If your wine is tart pull a
> sample and add sweetener, sugar, honey, whatever you like.  Adding
> acid will just make it worse.

> Joe

I'dh ave to agree, I drank some last night and I don't think I would need
more acid, I sweetened some of the last batch with 100% natural rasberry
syrup for a really good summer drink.  Maybe about an OZ or less per bottle
of wine.
 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Jack » Sun, 12 Aug 2007 09:18:29


Thank you, gentlemen! Lets give it a squirt and see what happens!
Quote:




> >> It's a cranberry***ktail - the label's gone, so not sure what else was
> >> in
> >> the 4 litre jugs. I added some nutrient - about 1 tsp per gal; no grape.
> >> They are a Superstore product - a Canadian grocery chain. And I am in NB,
> >> Canada.

> >> It's very tart and flat at the moment - about to bring up TA by adding a
> >> couple of tsp/gal of tartaric and citric acids to see what that does.


> >> > One more quick question, did you use yeast nutrients and if so how
> >> > much?- Hide quoted text -

> >> - Show quoted text -

> > Whoa.  I wouldn't add acid here, if anything you may want to consider
> > honey.    Cranberries are mostly citric acid, 1.4% (14g/l) is normal.
> > that explains the TA in the 2.4 range.  If your wine is tart pull a
> > sample and add sweetener, sugar, honey, whatever you like.  Adding
> > acid will just make it worse.

> > Joe

> I'dh ave to agree, I drank some last night and I don't think I would need
> more acid, I sweetened some of the last batch with 100% natural rasberry
> syrup for a really good summer drink.  Maybe about an OZ or less per bottle
> of wine.

 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by frederick ploegma » Mon, 20 Aug 2007 14:08:15


pH doesn't measure quantity.  pH measures consentration.
So - the solution is dilution.

You should always try to balance the must befor the yeast
is added.  It is always_much_harder to make adjustments
during or after the ferment.

pH 2.54 is outside my experince, but much too low.  With
the ferment already in progress, you can't just dump in water,
So I think I would try to correct this as follows:

Remove a portion of the wine.  Add the K carbonate. Stir
and wait 10 minutes or so for the reactions to take place.
Return the sample to the main batch.  It's kinda like
diluting the acid without diluting anything else.

Don't have my reference books any more but I think the
chemical adjustment should be limited to ~0.6pH.
HTH

        Frederick


Quote:
> Faulty pH reading. Microbio friend came up with some pH 4.0 buffer
> solution, and meter was about .9 low - today's reading 2.54.

> And you're right about the TA too - my number was ml of sodium hydroxide
> solution needed.

> So the pH is still below 3; is this significant? Other than contributing
> to
> the very slow fermentation....

> Jack


>> a pH reading of 1.33 / 1.48? Also - explain which metric you are using
>> for TA - most of the winemaking reference material I am familiar with
>> uses weight / volume (grams / liter) and typical wines would be .4% to
>> 1.0% --- if you are expressing with a different metric, possibly your
>> reading is the same as .525 ---- or, as with your pH, your acid
>> readings are "off the charts" (metaphorically speaking).

>> Personally, I suspect a faulty pH reading. The levels you describe are
>> two orders of magnitude more acidic than 'typical' wine range. Those
>> readings are more acidic than, say, a lime. I mistrust your pH reading
>> because it seems unlikely, to me, that your yeasts would be effective
>> in that environment (need a resident microbiologist to speak to that).

>> I'll be curious to read other responses -

>> >  SG .997, TA 5.25 pH  1.33 on first go; friend said he'd never seen
>> > sucha low reading. Recalibrated meter, pH 1.48.......

>> >  This probably explains the slow fermentation process.

>> >  A couple of others are 2.3 - 2.75. And I believe that they should be
>> > abit over 3 from the literature.

>> --

>> I'm using an evaluation license of nemo since 73 days.
>> You should really try it!
>> http://www.malcom-mac.com/nemo

 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by Bore » Tue, 21 Aug 2007 17:44:55


On Sun, 19 Aug 2007 07:08:15 +0200, frederick ploegman  

Quote:

> pH doesn't measure quantity.  pH measures consentration.

Concentration is a way of expressing quantity - per liter. So taking it  
literally you are wrong.

Borek
--
http://www.ph-meter.info/
http://www.chembuddy.com/?left=BATE&right=pH-calculator

 
 
 

How do I correct very low pH in country wines?

Post by frederick ploegma » Sat, 01 Sep 2007 21:36:34


I just tend to think of consentration as expressing the relationship
between 2 quantities, and consentration can be changed by
changing either one of those quantities..........


On Sun, 19 Aug 2007 07:08:15 +0200, frederick ploegman

Quote:

> pH doesn't measure quantity.  pH measures consentration.

Concentration is a way of expressing quantity - per liter. So taking it
literally you are wrong.

Borek
--
http://www.ph-meter.info/
http://www.chembuddy.com/?left=BATE&right=pH-calculator