Home Brew Wine Making using WineWorldFDW Recipes
The following instructions are for making one gallon of wine, using a blend of ground dried flowers, seeds, roots and leaves as listed in the WineWorldFDW recipes. These wines represent the pinnacle of new wine production with great elegance and finesse.
Please read all the instructions before commencing.
You will need a large saucepan able to hold 5 pints of water, a fermenting bin, a couple of demijohns (fermenting jars), one kilo of sugar, wine yeast, yeast nutrient, 2 teaspoons of citric acid, two teaspoons of tea for tannin, and of course, the dried flower, seeds, roots or leaves from our recipies.
A yeast culture is necessary to generate alcohol; most wine yeasts will give instructions on how to create a live culture. For the inexperienced home-brewer you could just buy some grapes, pick them off the wood and crush them in a cup with the skin. Add a little warm pure fruit juice and one teaspoon of sugar, place in a warm area like a radiator to 80 degrees F. When it bubbles with a nice froth on top it is ready to add to your wine.
Fill the saucepan with 3 pints of water and bring to the boil and simmer. Now drop in your selection of dried flower, roots, seeds or leaves, half a kilo of sugar and 2 teaspoons of tea (or two teabags). Stir well till the sugar has dissolved and put the lid on to keep the aroma in. Turn off the heat and allow to cool down.
When at room temperature, remove the teabags and pour the liquid and the flower, root, leaf or seed ingredients into a demijohn. Add the citric acid and yeast nutrient, the pulp will be filtered out later. Now top up the demijohn to four fifths full with warm water (65-80 degrees F). Now add the yeast culture to the demijohn and fit a bung with an airlock (you could use the plastic from a carrier bag and an elastic band). Within 48 hours your wine will be bubbling (you can only see this with an airlock). During the next 7 days give the demijohn an occasional shake.
After 7 days it is time to remove the must from the wine. Either syphon the wine from the demijohn into another demijohn, or pour the wine through a fine sieve or other strainer. Again, fit a bung and airlock, and allow the wine to continue fermenting. The temperature will decide the speed of ferment - too hot and the wine will froth out through the airlock, too cool and the fermenting will slow to a stop. The ideal temperature is around 60-65 degrees F for the rest of this process, although the wine will continue fermenting at temperatures as low as 45 degrees F, although extremely slowly.
You will need to add the rest of the sugar and if you have a hydrometer it would help. Sugar is added when the reading is 1010 or less, do this in small doses by stirring sugar into a cup full of wine extracted from the demijohn. As you come to the end of the sugar you must decide what level of sweetness you require. For example, a reading on the hydrometer of 1020 is a sweet wine, 1010 is medium, and 990 is very dry. If after using all the sugar the wine is not quite just short of the neck, top up the demijohn with water.
A single Campden tablet crushed and stirred into the wine should kill off the yeast and stop the fermentation process. The smell created by the tablet will go in a day or so. The wine will clear in about 3-7 days if successful, but if not repeat the process. When clear, the sediment will require racking off. This is done with a siphon tube, and possibly a coffee filter paper. The aim is a clear wine with no residue at the bottom. Syphon the wine from the demijohn into another demijohn, being careful not to disturb the sediment.
Your wine needs to mature for anything from 6 months to 2-3 years. You can transfer the wine to bottles now, or you can store it in the demijohn. Store the wine in a cool place like the loft. If you are using bottles with cork bungs, store the bottles on their sides to keep the cork wet and prevent it from shrinking. If you have made a red wine and wish to keep the colour, put a brown paper bag round the demijohn or bottles at all times, or the light will bleach out the colour.
Your wine should be about 13% alcohol and should be drinkable about 6 months after racking off. Sweeten if necessary with sugar substitutes like saccharin. Enjoy!