Tuesday, May 1, 2012
The ideal utensils to use for wine making and boiling ingredients & juices are those of good quality enamel. Those sold under a brand name are most reliable. The utensils must not be chipped.
It is almost impossible to pour clear wine from one bottle to another without stirring up the lees. Because of this, it is a good plan, to siphon off the clear wine when rebottling it.
Using about a yard and a half of surgical rubber tubing or plastic tubing, siphoning is a very simple operation. First, put the bottles or jars of wine on a table and the empty bottles on a stool or box on the floor. Next, put one end of the tubing in the first bottle of wine and suck the other end of the tube until the wine comes; pinch the tube at your lips and - holding on tight - put this end in the empty bottle and then let the wine flow. As the level of the wine falls, lower the tube into it, being careful not to let it touch the lees. When nearly all of the wine has been transferred, pinch the tube at the neck of both bottles, put one end into the next bottle and allow the wine to flow again.
In this way a constant flow is maintained and you have bottles of crystal-clear wine. The sediment from each bottle may be put together; this will clear in time to leave a little more wine.
Most of you will already have heard of one or other home-made wine and will have decided which to make. For those who have not yet decided, preference for a 'port* or 'whisky' may be the deciding factor and this must rest with yourselves.
I would advise you only in this: make, say, a gallon or a half-gallon of a variety of wines and then decide which you prefer over a period of time. I have whittled my own preference down to nine different wines which I brew regularly according to season, leaving the dried fruit for the time when fresh fruit is not available and when roots - potatoes, etc. - are too fresh for wine-making purposes.
Different recipes will call for slightly different approaches, but it must be remembered that whatever else has to be done, the brew must be kept in a warm place throughout the fermentation period, and that the process after fourteen days* fermentation in the tub is the same with all recipes.
Now select your recipe and go ahead with your wine-making, bearing in mind all that I have warned you about.