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how much SO2 is too much


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What is the upper limit of SO2 in a wine before it will cross over in the distilled spirit?

I have a wash of wine with 33mg/L of SO2 and am wondering if it is too high to properly distill into a usable brandy

 

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Part 2:

So I am distilling this wine and the spirit exiting the still smells sharp, like  muriatic acid, is this the SO2? it does not smell like rotting eggs but it is strong burns the nose a bit.

I have read that it could acrolein? I did an invert sugar test and there is no proteins or fat in the distillate.

 I did wash the still out with an acid cleaner, (envirocid) followed by a hot water rinse perhaps there is a residue of cleaner, but I would assume that the rinse would take care of that. Also any residue would be "gone" after 30L one would think.

any Ideas out there?

 

cheers

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Hey Silk City

what does that mean? the PH of the wine 3.8

This is new territory for me, any information will be helpful.

 

Thank you

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Is the 33ppm the free or total SO2? 33 TOTAL ppm is not very much, but it is high enough that it will be detectable in the distillate. SO2 does not smell like rotten eggs, it is a piercing, irritating chemical odor like a struck match. Some of the so2 odor in the distillate will dissipate with oxygenation, or the wine and/or distillate can be treated with hydrogen peroxide prior to distillation. Generally wine with so2 makes brandy best suited for use in fortification, as treatment with hydrogen peroxide seems to destroy much the floral and fruit aromas that make brandy good.  

If there is a problem with acrolein the distillate will have a low level of contamination a distinct horseradish, mustard sensation which becomes tear inducingly painful at higher levels. The aroma will dissipate with several years of aging but it is very unpleasant to deal with and better to not take the wine.  

VA (volatile acidity) in wine smells like vinegar, it can give the distillate an acetone / nail polish remover aroma but it is generally less of a problem than so2 or acrolein as it can be mostly removed in the heads cut and a good portion of it will evolve away with sufficient aging. 

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That is so helpful, thank you JustAndy

the SO2 is 33mg/L in the wine I am using. and it would appear that is the culprit then, it it is a piercing, irritating chemical odor for sure. That is great to know for the future, next week I am going to distill a small sample batch of the same wine in my 80L still to confirm that it was not leftover cleaning chemicals (as I had originally thought)so my assumption will be that it should smell the same.

 

This forum is really great, thank you

 

cheers

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yep 33mg/L of SO2 is too much.

The 80L still put out the same bad smelling distillate, so there it is I guess.

Now to remove the SO2 using H2O2, and we will see how it goes

 

Cheers

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  • 2 weeks later...

The addition of H202 and some crazy aeration helped once I let the product sit for a day and a half before re distilling it. The final spirit had a nice fruity smell with no harsh burn your nose smell...

 

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