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This wine is ready to drink and bottle in 11 days. The older it gets the better it's quality. I got this recipe from the University of Minnesota. A note with the recipe said it was from a small family vineyard in France. I made a 5 gallon batch one year and gave it for gifts until I ran out 31/2 years later. One of the recipients was my priest. After Christmas mass the year I ran out, He stopped me to thank me for his gift but told me he missed my gift of wine that year. I told him I ran out. He then told me he had to call the local liquor store to open up so he could buy wine for Christmas Masses as he had been using my wine for communion wine on Christmas for the past 3 years. I felt so honored that my wine was used in such a special way. Number of servings is based on number of 4 ounce servings per gallon of wine. I use beer bottles It seems just enough for 2 for a meal. I use quart bottles for gifts. Be sure to store wine bottles on their side so the corks do not dry out.
- Choose ripe Wild Grapes, Pick them in clusters on the stems, bring them home and wash them in cold water leaving them on the stems.
- Place grapes with stems on, in water just to cover, in an enamel or non metallic kettle.
- Bring just to a boil, simmer till skins on the grapes pop, Mash the grapes in the water, Strain juice into a non-metallic container, through several layers of cheese cloth or a clean dish towel to remove grape pulp, seeds and stems.
- Reserve the juice, Throw away stems and pulp.
- Measure the juice.
- Add equal amounts of sugar and water, (ie: 1 gal juice, 1 gal sugar, 1 gal water) put wine mixture in clean crock.
- spread or sprinkle 1 cake or one pkg dry yeast on dry bread crust and allow it to float on top of the wine mixture, cover crock with a clean dish towel, let ferment for 3 days, strain wine, into non metallic container such as an enamel canner kettle, wash the crock and be sure to rinse it very well, put wine back into the crock, allow to ferment for 4 days, stirring every day and skimming the foam from top, strain the wine again as before, wash the crock again, put wine back in the crock.
- Allow to ferment 4 days, stirring and skimming every day.
- Strain the wine once more, this time it is ready to bottle.
- The older it gets the better.
My husband and I have had such fun with this. We've actually let it age an extra few days - tried it tonight - it's quite good. I'm wondering if the same general recipe would work with other fruits for strawberry wine, blackberry wine, etc. We're gonna give it a shot. I think this would make an excellent Sangria sort of drink as well now that it's to the drinking stage.
This recipe is great, it does take time but it is well worth it. My husband named this "red lightening". It was real strong but good flavor.
so far its going great. the problem was bottling before fermentation was complted. like the other author said leave corks or lid on loose but not to loose.