How to make Homemade Wine with Grapes
Wine – does the word not have a lyrical quality to it? Like music to your ears! Wine, an age-old beverage has been the favorite drink from time immemorial.
The mention of wine is found in the oldest of epics, myths, legends and poems the world over, be it Greek, Indian, Scandinavian, Roman, Chinese, and more.
Every culture has had its unique method of making wines and even homes have their own ways of preparing the wine that the family likes best.
However, with the easy and convenient availability of wines in stores, not many homes are taking on the burden of making their own wines or carrying forward the tradition of wine making at home.
The following recipe will help you learn a simple and natural way to make red wine with grapes the old-fashioned way in your house.
Choosing the best grapes
A market is the best place to choose your grapes. A market will usually have grape varieties and quantities in abundance and hence the chance that you get the fruit of your choice is high.
Do not let the distance deter you from making that trip to the market at the correct season. This could really make or break your wine making process and hence affect the end result.
Crushing the grapes
Using a crusher either manual or powered, crush all the grapes. Then remove all the stalks and transfer the crushed grapes into large plastic drums.
Resting the crushed grapes
Allow the grapes to rest in these drums for up to a week. Nothing is required to be added to the squashed grapes including no external fermenting agent or cleaning agent. Just let them rest.
It is very important to not even wash the grapes before allowing it to ferment so that the naturally occurring yeast on the grapes’ skin can do its work. The fermenting process is facilitated by the yeast that is present in the skin of the grapes.
Some people use sodium metabisulfite in an attempt to disinfect the grapes. This chemical also acts as an antioxidant and a preservative. The sodium metabisulfite, in reality, kills the natural yeast preventing the occurrence of the natural fermenting process.
To overcome this loss, yeast is added externally. This, however, is neither the old-fashioned nor the natural way to make wine. Just let nature take over your wine making process. You simply need to facilitate it.
Getting the wine
Using the vinometer, you can check the correct level of alcohol/sugar in the grapes and once the desired level is reached, the wine is ready to be siphoned out.
Using a siphon and a pipe, siphon out the wine from the grape drums and collect it in buckets or smaller buckets or vessels. Every last drop of wine can be removed by using mechanized drainers.
Transfer all the siphoned out wine into another large drum and completely seal it except for a small hole through which a pipe passes through. This ensures that no air gets in.
The carbon monoxide formed during this part of the fermentation process passes through the small pipe which is let into a bottle of water. The byproduct gas thus is allowed to escape.
This part of fermentation requires to be done for about eight months and during this period make sure you change the cover of the drums/containers regularly so that the lid remains secure and firmly fixed.
After about eight months of this fermentation process, the wine is ready to be bottled. Any bottle with a screw cap that is sealed well is sufficient to hold and store the wine for a long period of time.
And voila, the wine is ready for drinking. However, as you probably are aware, the older the wine the better does it taste. So let the wine rest in bottles in some warm part of your home for some more time before you serve it to your friends and family.
While the art of wine making is long, it is not at all cumbersome. You just need to ensure that you choose the best fruits, that you do not add any external agents and make sure that the fermentation is completely natural.
And rest assured nature will make the wine for you. You have to merely be a facilitator and why not when you know that at the end of the seemingly long road there is some beautiful, gorgeous and totally natural wine that you can feast on for an even longer time.
I hope you found this natural winemaking method useful and simple enough to be inspired to make a beginning in your home! Please do read the tips before you start to make sure you have not missed an important point.
Ensure your hands are gloved throughout the process to maintain hygiene and cleanliness.
Crushing the grapes can be a great family bonding activity with all the members (with feet scrubbed clean) get into the vats of grapes and go stomp, stomp, stomp!
The stalks of the grapes should be separated after crushing. These stalks can be used to make vinegar.
Not adding any external chemicals or agents enhances the purity of the wine and keeps the flavor of the grapes pristine and natural.
It is critical to do the task of clearing the crushed grapes in phases as it is quite possible that you inhale a lot more alcohol from the activity than the desired amount and probably have an issue focusing on the task at hand.