Author Topic: Making Wine is Wise  (Read 2283 times)

leighb

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Making Wine is Wise
« on: August 05, 2015, 09:48:54 PM »

Making my own wine has been one of the best cost saving adjustments I've made. Plus, it's a cool hobby. Right now I have close to 30 gallons in the basement. Many of the supplies are cheap or free. The recipes are easy, the timing is forgiving, the product is delicious. And when it's not delicious it gets distilled or turned into vinegar.

What should be free with a little work: Fruit, recipes, advice and glass jugs. Ask your local cooperative for old one gallon glass jugs. Save the ones that apple juice comes in. Unlike money, fruit does grow on trees. Right now I can pick blackberries, blue berries, elderberries, pears, figs, and plums all 100% for free. I can usually get enough of all of these to make 5 gallons of blackberries, and 5 gallons of plums. In the late spring I make: Lilac, dandelion, raspberry, strawberry and beet wine.

What costs money: Sugar $2-3 per gallon, Yeast $1 per batch, Other "stuff" $1 per gallon.  Apart from that, you'll need a siphon (plastic tube), a jug cleaner thingabob $2, and a food grade bucket. I like working in larger batches, so a 5 gallon carboy is not a bad investment. Cleanliness in wine making is important.



Papa bear

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Re: Making Wine is Wise
« Reply #1 on: August 05, 2015, 10:09:15 PM »
Are you in the US?  I'm more familiar with beer brewing rules but I've been curious about making wine as well.  Are there the same production restrictions on wine? Ok to distill? 

Good to know that it seems like a good cost saver.


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leighb

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Re: Making Wine is Wise
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2015, 10:43:56 PM »
US. Wine's okay. Distilling is not.

FarmerPete

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Re: Making Wine is Wise
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2015, 07:57:45 AM »
I'm not sure if it's a state or federal law, but last I knew, there was a limit to how much homebrewing an individual could do in my state of 25 gallons.  Now, there isn't any real way for them to monitor it.  Just don't have a carboy/brewer bigger than 25 gallons!

NorCal

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Re: Making Wine is Wise
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2015, 05:07:36 PM »
It is an excellent hobby!  Particularly for those that are busy or lazy.  A batch of wine takes work for 2-3 days, but you get to tell people you're making wine for a full 6 months!

I highly recommend making a dry cherry wine.  That's my favorite so far.  I never got the plum wine to come out, and strawberry was okay.

The best book of recipe's I've found is "Making Wild Wines & Meads" at the link below.

http://www.amazon.com/Making-Wild-Wines-Meads-Unusual/dp/1580171826/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1438902283&sr=8-9&keywords=making+wines+from+fruits

I'm pretty sure the federal legal limit is making 200 gallons/year, although I'm sure states vary.  You are never allowed to sell or trade it with anyone without licensing.

Mrs.LC

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Re: Making Wine is Wise
« Reply #5 on: August 08, 2015, 08:17:02 AM »
Making wine is very wise. We give bottles for gifts and bring it to dinners/pot lucks as our contribution. Our wine costs anywhere from 25 cents to $2.00 a bottle to make so it is relatively cheap.