One further note. It is generally not a good idea to have a thick layer of sediment at the bottom of any container holding wine. Over time, the sediment will compact, and as the dead yeast and detritus begin to decay through autolysis, they will emit hydrogen sulfide, a foul-smelling gas. Too much H2S and your nice wine will begin to reek like rotten cabbage.

The problem, as I stated earlier, is that you don't want to rack during this stage, either. So how do we keep the nasty H2S at bay?

The French found that by periodically stirring up the layer of sediment, any hydrogen sulfide gas will be safely bubbled up to the surface and out the airlock. But there is also an added benifit to this stirring. The mannoproteins formed by the decaying yeast also add a creaminess to the mouthfeel of the wine.

They even invented a word for this stirring of yeast lees: batonnage, after the baton-like implement used for the process.

To stir the sediment, sanitize a long dowel or the non-business end of a stir spoon. Slowly and carefully break up the sediment until it goes back into solution. Yes, it will cloud up the wine. But we don't care at this point.

Do this once a week until ML finishes.

More to come...