Wine Making with fruit juice

Discussion in 'Cookery' started by Barrack Room Lawyer, Feb 5, 2009.

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  1. Im currently knocking up a couple of batches of wine using fruit juice, never made wine before, thought this would be a relativley easy introduction, if all goes well it should be between 12 - 15%.

    I am usuing recipes from Here and Here
  2. Used Tea Bags.... Thats serious recycling.......I haven't got the recipe handy but involves about 24 used tea bags a gallon of hot water, sugar, citric acid and yeast (handful of raisins if you're feeling adventurous.

    Steep the old teabags for about 10 mins, drain add other ingredients and then proceed as making any other brew.

    The Tea bags can be further recycled by composting.

    Tea Wine (after a few years festering in the bottle tastes like sherry and gets up to 13-14%

    We used to make hooch from the fruit syrup out of tinned fruit and baking yeast when op board ship (RN) in the 70's. It was made in the plastic 1 gallon detergent containers so had a distinctive "nose", but worked a treat. Hic!!
  3. Cos you're not in Afghanistan, stuck in a FOB right now are you!!??
  4. Pectin is an important ingredient in wine-making, often overlooked. The first website BRL gave suggests using some cranberry, orange, or apple juice with the grape juice for this very reason, though they don't actually say why.
  5. The first BBC recipe seems to involve "staging" juice - can't see the point. Sugar in stages is a good idea to avoid a stuck fermentation, particularly if you are aiming at an original gravity over (say) 1060-70, but unadulterated juice is all the same concentration. Fermenting juice without extra sugar will only produce about 5% alcohol I think (I've never spun an hydrometer in fruit juice, but I wouldn't have thought it was that sugary).

    I'd also be fussy about the yeast. Any brewer's yeast will do, but a specialist shop (with a pissartist behind the till :D ) can give you good advice about which kind of yeast will go well with different kinds of juice.
  6. This all sounds pertty painless. thanks for the info' all.

    My interest is well and truly piqued and I'm gonna give it a go this weekend.

  7. My first batch is ready for bottling around this weekend, will have a little taster and report back, I suspect it may be very sweet though like a alcopop, will report back on monday.
  8. Let it ferment out.......more booze :)
  9. Bought 2 demijohns and enough yeast to make 120 gallons of wine plus bungs, hose tape and airlocks etc for £25 at our local health food shop.

    now the detail question - the first one anyways ! :

    3) What temperature do you store the fermenting demijohn at ? I've been told both between 20-25 C and a cool place like my shed. Which is it ?


    Edited to delete questions 1 & 2. :D
  10. About 20C/70F. Much above 25C and you kill the yeast. In the summer it can be a bit tricky in a modern building to find somewhere cool enough, and some people keep their houses raosting all the time. The fermentation generates a fair amount of heat. From now on (Spring, hopefully) an unheated room with a karrimat bungeed around the bin should keep it about 70F - a floating thermometer in the bin allows you to keep an accurate check - one stuck on the side is only slightly less accurate; centre of the brew will be a bit hotter than that.
  11. I was in the local home brew gaff yesterday getting some advice off the owner. He reccomended keeping the fermenting wine at around 22 celcius and raised off a floor and away from draughts. If it's not stored in an airing cupboard or similar then at night wrap the demi john or container with paper for insulation.

    He said as well that making wine / ale isn't an exact science. He's been doing it 50 years and still has the odd screw up.
  12. Pretty much what I do 5A in a cubpoard under the stairs, Im bottling a batch up later, will let you know how good it is if I dont go blind.
  13. Well the first batch is superb! The apple and grape juice has turned out as good as any modestly priced white wine, the raspberry apple and grape has turned out a fruity red and the cranberry and red grape is a sweet rose.

    I reckon they must be about 15% easily, I didnt have the knowledge of how a hydrometer works to test the gravity etc but when I start the second batch I will get some readings but to be honest you cannot go wrong using fruit juice!

    Here's to a cheap drunken summer, cheers! :drunken:
  14. I have zero experience at winemaking. However, last year I got a chance to visit an old friend from school. He is a doctor but bought a large vinyard and orchard in upstate New York. He started making wine, cider and perry. Then his son went to university and studied food production and they started a distillery. The distillery makes fruit brandies that are similar to the French "Alcool Blanc". It is delicious stuff. He told me that when making the brandy they ferment a finely mashed slurry of the fruit, solids in the mix with the liquid. They then distill the fermented mash. He said the solids enhance the intensity of the fruit flavour of the brandy without adding sweetness,

    On the non distilled side of things his perry is wonderful, fermented using the same technique.

    I have no idea if this will help anyone but this is the way professional wineries apparently do it.