Comparative analysis of Malic Acid testing methods

Do you wait for the completion of Malolactic fermentation before adding sulfite to your wine? This reduces the overall acidity of your wine, leading to a smooth, softer mouth feel and a pleasant complexity in nose and taste. If malic acid levels are not reduced below around 0.1 g/L, there is significant risk that fermentation will start up again in the bottle, popping corks and/or making that beautiful red you so lovingly put up in your cellar turn fizzy! So it’s important to have accurate information on your malic acid levels.

Recently, Vinmetrica’s president Richard Sportsman completed a comparative analysis of Malic Acid testing methods by comparing Vinmetrica’s SC-50 MLF Analyzer (paired with the SC-300 Analyzer), Accuvin MLF test strips, HPLC (High Performance Liquid Chromatography) and an enzymatic assay.

The full report can be found here or in Vinmetrica’s FAQ section under MLF Questions. Happy testing (and tasting)!

2 thoughts on “Comparative analysis of Malic Acid testing methods

  1. I’m interested in the SC-300 Pro Kit but have no idea which beaker to use or why. I make either 5 gal or 3 gal batches of wine. What recommendation (10 ml, or 25 ml) beaker would be appropriate for my limited operation? Is there any advantages over the 10 or 25 ml testing?
    I need to raise my level of wine making so that I obtain consistent results and the testing will help.
    Bill Hodgson, CCE

    1. Bill, choosing between a 10mL or 25mL burette depends on your testing needs and preferences. Based on your information, I would suggest a 10mL burette since your operation is relatively small. 25mL burettes are more favorable when doing multiple titrations with wine samples from hundreds of gallons.

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