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Strawberry Wine Recipe

** I’ve made this as mead using honey instead of sugar and it was absolutley horrible for the first six months.

INGREDIENTS (for 1 gallon):

3 1/2 lbs. strawberries
2 1bs. sugar (or specific gravity of 1.090)
1 tablespoon Super Ferment (or 6 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
4 drops liquid pectic enzyme (1/2 tsp. pectic enzyme powder)
1 tsp. acid blend
1/4 tsp. grape tannin
1 gallon water
1 campden tablet (crushed and dissolved in 1/4 cup hot water)
Wine yeast (Red Star Cote des Blanc, Lalvin 71B-1122, champagne)

Note- All equipment must be well washed and sterilized with a solution of sodium metabisulfite to prevent contamination.

1. The fruit should be picked when ripe. Wash well. Place the fruit in primary fermenter and crush. Pour 1 gallon hot water over fruit and sugar. Add the dissolved campden tablet. Stir well. Cover.

2. Allow to cool to room temperature (about 70° F). Add pectic enzyme and stir. Cover. Stir well every 8 to 10 hours.

3. On the next day, add the acid blend, tannin, yeast nutrient, and wine yeast. Cover securely with plastic sheet and allow to ferment 30-40 days. Stir once daily.

4. When the foaming has ceased, strain out the fruit pulp. Syphon into 1 gallon secondary fermenter and attach air lock. Be sure jug is filled to neck and lock is tight.

5. Allow to ferment to completion (specific gravity of 1.000 or less). Rack off sediment into another secondary or, if not available, rack into primary fermenter, clean out & sanitize secondary, then immediately rack back into secondary. Allow to age about 1 month or until perfectly clear. If clear and stable at this time, the wine may be bottled. If not, rack once more and allow to clear another month (add 1/2 campden tablet per gallon when racking).

6. Stablilize the wine with 1/2 tsp. potassium sorbate and 1/2 campden tablet per gallon. If a sweeter wine is desired, sweeten to taste with either fructose or with sugar syrup (1 cup sugar to 1/2 cup boiling water). Bottle and cork the wine, then stand upright for 2 – 3 days to allow corks to expand. Then lay wine on its side to age for 4-6 months. Drink and enjoy!!!!!!


Elderberry Wine Recipe

**great stuff. Tastes a bit like grape but smells like feet. I’ve been meaning to try it with honey instead of sugar. Very good stuff. I think the stuff made with dried berries tastes much better than the professionally prepared elderberry wine bases.

INGREDIENTS for each gallon to be made:

6 oz. Dried Elderberries or 3 lbs. fresh elderberries
1 gallon Warm Water
2 lbs. Sugar
1/2 – 1 lb. Chopped Raisins (optional)
1 tsp. grape tannin
1 1/2 tsp. acid blend
1/2 tsp. Super Ferment (or 2 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
1 campden tablet (crushed) or 1/8 tsp. Sodium Metabisulfite
Wine Yeast

1. Mix all the ingredients EXCEPT the wine yeast in primary fermenter. Stir well to dissolve.

2. Allow to stand for 24 hours. Stir several times during this period.

3. Add wine yeast to a cup of lukewarm water. Cover and allow to stand 10 – 15 minutes. Now add to fermenter and cover with lid or plastic sheet and tie down.

4. Ferment for 30-40 days (until S.G. 1.030). Stir daily to break up pulp cap. Strain out the pulp and knead to extract the juice. Syphon into sterilized secondary fermenter and attach fermentation lock.

Note: A second run may be made from the discarded pulp. Add another gallon warm (not hot! ) water, more sugar, more acid blend (increase amount to 2 tsp.) and more yeast nutrient. Ferment 10 days on the pulp. Continue the original procedure. A lighter wine will result.

5. Rack into another sterilized jug at three weeks and attach fermentation lock. Always fill the jug as full as possible. Rack again in about 1 month.

6. When wine is clear and stable, it may be bottled. The addition of 1/2 tsp. potassium sorbate stabilizer is recommended. If a sweeter wine is desired, add simple syrup to taste (2 parts fructose or sugar to 1 part boiling water).

7. Bottle and cork and stand upright for 3 – 4 days then lay on its side and allow to age for 4-6 months in a dark, vibration free place.

NOTE: All equipment must be well washed and sterilized with a solution of sodium metabisulfite.


Honey Mead Recipe

** 15 lbs of honey in 5 gallon batch makes good sweet but 20 lbs of honey is like cotton candy. I like to use the pasteurized processed clover honey from Sam’s Wholesale club or Wal-Mart. I’ve tried different honey with varying result. The honey makes a dramatic difference in the body and flavor of your mead. Pasteurized and processed honey negates the need for campden tablets as long as you’re not putting in anything else that may be contaminated with bacteria. Use good filtered water too. It really makes a difference. I use a Britta filter.

INGREDIENTS for each gallon of mead to be made:

2 1/2 to 3 lbs. (about 26 – 32 fl. oz.)unprocessed honey (dry to semi-sweet)
Water to one gallon (Specific Gravity – 1.085 – 1.105)
1 tsp. Super Ferment (or 2 tsp. regular “nutrient”)
2 tsp. acid blend (or 3/4 tsp. tartaric acid & 1 1/4 tsp. malic acid)
1 tsp grape tannin
1 campden tablet* (crushed- or substitute 1/8 tsp. sodium metabisulfite)
1-2 pkgs. wine (e.g. Premier Cuvee, Champagne, Cote des Blancs, Sherry) or mead yeast

1. Mix all the ingredients EXCEPT the yeast and the campden tablet. Stir the must until the honey and additives are completely dissolved. Cover the pail to keep out dust and air with the large plastic sheet.

2. Crush and dissolve the campden tablet in 1 oz. of warm water. Add this to the must and stir well. Cover the pail again and tie down the plastic sheet. Let the must stand for one day, stirring several times.

*ALTERNATIVE: Heat honey with an equal volume of water to 180°F and let stand for 15 minutes to pasteurize. (DO NOT BOIL!) Cool and add remainder of water before proceeding to next step.

3. Rehydrate the dried yeast by sprinkling it into 1/2 cup lukewarm (95 – 100° F) water in a sanitized jar and cover for 20 minutes. (If using “Mead” yeast, prepare a starter 48 hours prior to using.) Add the yeast “slurry “/starter to mixture. Re-cover the primary fermenter and allow fermentation to proceed for 30-40 days or until foaming subsides.

4. Syphon the mead into a sterile glass jug. Avoid the transfer of sediment and aeration as much as possible. Be sure the mead completely fills the jug – into the neck. Attach a fermentation lock and allow the fermentation to go to completion (.995 – 1.020 S.G.).

5. One week after fermentation has ceased, syphon the mead into another sterile glass jug. Again, avoid the transfer of sediment and aeration. Crush, dissolve and add 1/2 campden tablet per gallon to the mead. Allow the mead to stand for one month in a cool dark place and repeat “racking” process. If at the end of three months, the mead is clear – bottle it. If it is not clear, repeat this step every month until it is clear and then bottle it. The mead may be sweetened to taste with additional honey, if desired, after stabilization (1/2 tsp. potassium sorbate & 1/2 campden tablet per gallon).

Note: All equipment should be well washed and sterilized with a solution of sodium metabisulphite. Fermentation temperatures should be no lower than 60 degrees F. or higher than 80 degrees F.

For an interesting variation, try adding a 6 oz. can frozen juice (e.g. orange, apple, cranberry) and cut back on the acid blend by 1 tsp.

Ratio for different meads – (parts by volume honey: parts by volume water)

DRY: 1:4 (2 1/2 lbs. honey per gallon)
SEMI-DRY: 1:3 (3 lbs. honey per gallon)
SWEET: 1:2.5 (4 lbs. honey per gallon)

Large Plastic pail or earthenware crock (primary fermenter)
One gallon glass jug (secondary fermenter)
Fermentation lock & drilled rubber stopper
Syphon tubing
5 ” Fifth” wine bottles and corks per gallon
Large plastic sheet