So i decided to try grape wine last year since my friend had a backyard full of grapes that were going to go to waste. My process ended up a little complicated and now I wonder if it’s still ok.

I harvested as many grapes as I could around the end of September. I took as many as I thought I’d need to fill a 25L Demi, crushed and started fermenting a must and froze the rest of the grapes. I didn’t add any sugar, and also managed to completely forget to take a hydrometer reading.

The must started up within a day and was pushing the skins to the top for about 4-5 days (stirring the skins back in 2-3 times a day) then over the next 2-3 days it slowed and seemed more of less done so I filtered it into a Demi. It ended up to be only about 20 L so I knew I had to get it topped up. Likely with what I had frozen.

Before I got to making another small must I had to move. And whether it was the time it took to get settled in my new home or procrastination the 20L of wine sat in the Demi for about 2 months... By the time I got around to dealing with it I found it had a little patches of a white layer on top. I read it was typical with the space I had left, but it was salvageable. So I racked it to another Demi from the middle, below the top white layer and dosed it with campdon.

At the same time I had started a must with the grapes I had frozen. That fermented just as the last for about a week. Again I forget to measure hah. I pressed it and added it to the batch I recently racked. From racking I had lost a few L so I ended up still short..about 1.5L to be nice and full... I was out of grapes, a so I ended up adding some fresh, additive free grape juice, sealed it and moved on.

I put it in my cold cellar and within maybe 3 days or so it was bubbling fairly significantly. It’s been about 2 weeks now and it’s still got a slow but steady bubbles rising. Could it still be fermenting off the grape juice sugar I added? Or maybe it was stuck, or has some bacteria taken over or what..? Is it ruined? Or can I just dose it with campdon? I sort of didn’t want to

Any insight would be appreciated. Thanks 🙏

  • 1
    Please post a comment when you downvote, so the OP can improve his question
    – Philippe
    Feb 8, 2019 at 21:07

1 Answer 1


Wine will continue to produce bubbles even when the fermentation is complete, the CO2 is stuck in the wine/must and is released gradually. Like a soda can that you open, it doesn't get flat before some time.

Of course, you can measure Finish Gravity using an hydrometer (even if you didn't measure the OG), just to make sure you are below 1.000 (for a dry wine), it will tell you that fermentation is completed.

A trick when you have air space left in a container, is to sanitize glass marbles and add them to the demi-john, you might need a lot of them, but they will raise the liquid level without adding any additionnal liquid. Adding water can be done in small quantity as well, depending how rich is the flavor to begin with.

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