Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Our Bin Runneth Over

Every year we learn something new.

This year one of the tweaks we were getting ready to be proud of was the determination of exactly how much you could fill a one-Ton Macro T-Bin with crushed grapes such that they wouldn’t overflow during fermentation.

We filled a number of bins up to a line five inches from the top, and double-checked to make sure we had clearance.
Once fermentation hit its stride in a couple of days after warming from cold soak, copious amounts of very purple Petite Sirah juice began cascading down the sides of one of our bins.
This created enough of a mess that the cellar master repeated at least six times that he had to clean up everything and, “You are going to remove some of those grapes.”
Nick – who has been kindly doing all the punchdowns this year – went over the records to determine that the most obnoxious bin of Petite hadn’t even received its first helping of yeast nutrient yet.

So we have reset our maximum fill protocol to what should be an ample seven inches from the top. (Let’s hope that works or we're going to be wearing out the mop!)

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