If you recall, I started my wine making journey back in July. As of January, my mission is complete and now I just have to patiently wait for my wine to age. It was a long process with not a lot of hands on time but a lot of waiting time. I’m totally doing it again! It’s awesome to look and see that i’ve got a shelf full of homemade wine.
About the wine:
Originally, this wine was dry, similar to a chardonnay. I’m not a huge fan of dry wines, so I decided to stabilize my wine and sweeten it. I then let it sit for a couple more weeks just to make sure the yeast was in fact dead and I wouldn’t have a bunch of corks popping out of my wine bottles once I bottled it! Right now the wine has a strong alcohol taste, which is why it needs to age. Over time that will decrease and the flavors will meld and smooth out for a pleasant drinking experience.
I followed the recipe in this book and tripled it (it seems like a lot of effort to get only one gallon of wine, so 3 gallons was more worth my time). It’s got some decent details, however you want to have a little bit of knowledge about wine making. The main thing is you want to make sure EVERYTHING you are using – utensils, measuring cups, buckets, carboys, bungs – are sanitized. Otherwise it can ruin your wine. Ruined wine would be bad. This summer I’m going to make a watermelon wine. Next I’d like to do a red fruit wine – either strawberry, cherry or raspberry with a canned fruit from the local wine & beer supply place. If the results are good, I’ll post the recipes! Before trying the legit wine making method again, I’m going to make what the internet is calling “prison wine” – which is fruit, water & sugar. To up the alcohol content, I’m going to add wine yeast. I’ll be documenting the process for you!
The 3 gallons yielded me 14 bottles + 1 quart mason jar. Not bad. Once I get a couple other batches going we’ll have a nice homemade stockpile.
Canned Pineapple Wine
Recipe from The Joy of Home Winemaking by Terry Garey
Yield: 1 gallon (double or triple everything in this recipe BUT THE YEAST to make a larger batch. One packet yeast is enough for 1-5 gallons)
3 1/2 quarts water
2 16oz cans crushed pineapple in juice
2lbs sugar or honey
1tsp acid blend
1tsp yeast nutrient
1 campden tablet, crushed (optional)
1/2tsp pectic enzyme
1 packet champagne yeast
Heat the water. Drain the juice (reserve for later use) from the fruit, place the fruit into a nylon straining bag, and put the bag in the bottom of a sanitized primary fermenter.
Add the fruit juice to the warm water. Add 1 1/2lbs of the sugar and stir until dissolved. Be sure it is dissolved and check the PA. For this wine you want about 12% potential alcohol. If the PA is below 12% add the additional 1/2 cup sugar. (you most likely will need to)Measure the PA again. Do not worry if it is a degree off. Pour the water and sugar syrup mixture over the fruit in the fermenter and add the acid and yeast nutrient. After the must cools, add the crushed campden tablet if you choose to use one. Cover and fit with an air lock. Twelve hours after the campden tablet, add the pectic enzyme. If you don’t use the tablet, you can wait until the must cools and add the pectic enzyme.
24 hours later, add the yeast.
Let it ferment for 5 days, stirring daily. When the PA falls to 3-4%, remove the fruit. Drain it well but do not squeeze. Let the wine settle, then rack into a gallon jug (or whatever size jug required depending on if you double/triple the recipe). Bung and fit with an air lock.
Rack the wine once or twice over the next 3-6 months. When fermentation is done and wine is clear, taste it. If you want it sweeter, stabilize it and sweeten it with dissolved sugar or boiled honey, then bottle.
Note: to give the wine more body, I added 1/2lb of golden raisins. I did sweeten my wine as it was too dry for my liking. I racked my wine twice in between July 4, 2011 (first added to carboy) to January 22, 2012(bottled and ready to age) to get rid of any excess pulp/yeast at the bottom of the carboy. And I did squeeze my fruit to get out every last drop of fruity goodness. It just made a little extra pulp that I had to filter out. For my corks I used synthetic corks because they don’t have to be soaked prior to using, and it allows me to store my wine bottles upright instead of on their sides. No worries about the corks drying out!