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How to Make Homemade Wine: Don’t Miss These Wine Making Tips
If you love wine, you’ve probably thought about learning how to make homemade wine!
Many of us remember our parents making wine and maybe for some it was not a good memory, especially when you were a child and you were not old enough to drink wine. Did you have to pick dandelions for your dad’s dandelion wine? If so, I can empathize with you because I am too. We lived in the country where dandelions grew abundantly and freely, unlike my suburban lawn today where the sight of even one dandelion becomes the sight of the neighborhood.
Hopefully, your taste in wine, like mine, has matured and taken on new levels of wine appreciation, choosing for the sophisticated flavors and aromas of red wine types such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Zinfandel or those found in wine types white, like. Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, or Moscato – none of which require us to choose dandelions if we want to indulge in some wine making of our own.
Learn how to make delicious homemade wine!
You’re probably wondering if homemade wine will taste any good, and it’s helpful to know that award-winning homemade wine exists and is easy to make. Homegrown wine can provide the same excellent complexity, flavor, and aroma of many vineyard wines.
The following information provides you with winemaking supplies and instructions for bottling this wine. The instructions are easy to follow, but to make a delicious wine requires a little bit of aging. So we must patiently wait for our wine to ferment properly, which may take 3-6 months or more. The wine will be ready to bottle after a month and can be drunk in another month, but longer could result in a wine that tastes better, particularly with red wine.
I know it will be hard to wait, but it will be worth it! You can label your wine, name it after yourself, your dog, a certain fantasy, or anything else that satisfies your fancy.
How to Make Homemade Wine – Wine Making Kit
To learn how to make homemade wine, I think it’s best to start with a wine kit. There are a number of websites that sell kits. Many of the kits are great as they come packaged with reusable equipment, quality ingredients, and easy-to-follow instructions for making wine.
You could make homemade wine from scratch, without using a kit, but you would still have to buy some wine making supplies, fruit juice, wine yeast, disinfectants, etc. If you buy a wine making kit, all the items. that you need to make wine at home are included.
How to make simple homemade wine recipes – Let’s get started!
For beginners, it is better to start with a small batch of wine. We will use this simple recipe to make our wine, and it can be adjusted for dry or sweet according to your taste.
Ingredients for making wine
1 1/2 quarts (48 oz) 100% grape juice: white, red, or blue grape juice* at room temperature between 65 and 75°F
1/2 package dry yeast**
2 1/2 quarts fresh water
3 1/4 cups sugar (for a sweeter wine add up to 5 cups sugar)
*Make sure the juice does not have potassium sorbate in it, it will prevent the fermentation process from happening properly. We will, however, add potassium sorbate later in the process to add stability to the wine. You can buy concentrated “grape wine” juice (ie, juice from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay grapes) from wine suppliers that would really be the best juice to use. However, for a first attempt at making homemade wine, you may want to stick with frozen concentrate from the grocery store.
** Wine yeast can be obtained from a wine supplier, but some winemakers use baker’s yeast. If you find wine yeast, refer to the yeast packaging for the appropriate amount to use.
Wine making products
As you learn how to make homemade wine, you’ll also learn that many wine supplies can be reused, reducing the cost of making it. You will need the following basic equipment and supplies, many of which you can find at an online wine supply store, as well as books on how to make homemade wine.
Chlorine detergent disinfectant
1 primary fermentation container with lid (a bottle, tub, or bucket that holds more than the cookie)
1 gallon container (a glass or plastic container used to hold acidic liquids, such as wine)
1 bong with airlock (used in fermentation to allow carbon dioxide to escape from the bottle and protect wine from outside dust or other contamination)
1 hydrometer (measure sugar, gravity and alcohol in wine)
Stabilizers – one packet of metabisulphite and one packet of potassium sorbate)
Wine bottle with screw cap
How to make homemade wine step by step
How to make homemade wine phase 1 – initial fermentation
Disinfect the primary fermentation vessel – to prevent wine contamination and spoilage, do not skip this very important step.
Place the juice, sugar, and yeast in the main sterilized fermentation vessel, and mix it gently, but thoroughly, with a wooden spoon or put the lid on and gently shake it.
Fill the remaining space in the container with water, leaving 1/2″ at the top.
Using a hydrometer, measure gravity; you should get a reading anywhere from 1.070 to 1.080.
Place the lid on the main fermenter.
Place the fermenter in a place that maintains a temperature of 65-75 °F. In 48 hours fermentation begins.
How to make homemade wine Phase 2 – Second fermentation
On the 7th day, transfer the wine to the cookie in this way:
Disinfection of cookies and siphoning material – to prevent wine contamination and spoilage do not skip this very important step.
Using the siphoning tube, siphon the wine into the sanitized vat without disturbing the sediment in the main fermentation vessel. You will want to keep any sediment in the main fermentation vessel. When you finish siphoning, you will most likely see extra space (due to the sediment left behind) in the cookie, but don’t finish it just yet.
Using a hydrometer, measure gravity; you should get a reading of 1.010 or less.
Attach bong and Air-lock to cookie (read Air-lock directions for attachment – fill halfway with water).
Leave the cookies in the fermentation area for 10 days.
How to make homemade wine Phase 3 – Stabilize
On the 17th day, re-measure the gravity of the wine; you should get a reading of 0.996 or less. Re-check the gravity the next day to verify that the wine has a stable reading. Repeat this process until the wine has two consecutive days of stable gravity.
Check the wine temperature to make sure it is between 65 and 75°F. If the temperature is below this range, the wine may be slow to stabilize and you may have high carbon dioxide (CO2) levels. If the reading is not in the appropriate range, either adjust the heat in the fermentation area or move the wine to an area with the appropriate temperature.
If the wine is not clear, it may be caused by too much CO2. To adjust this, add the stabilizers: 1 package of metabisulfite and 1 package of potassium sorbate in half a cup of fresh water and mix them to dissolve. Then add the mixture to the cookie, stir vigorously for a couple of minutes to distribute the stabilizer and break the CO2.
Add water to the top of the cookie to within 2 to 5″ of the neck of the cookie.
Re-attach the airlock.
Allow the wine to clarify for 8 days.
How to make homemade wine Phase 4 – Clarification and bottling
On the 25th day of your homemade wine adventure, check for wine clarity.
Draw a sample of wine into a glass and examine it under good lighting. If the liquid is not completely clear, leave it alone for another 7 days. Cloudy wine will not clear after bottling, so do not bottle the wine until it is completely clear.
When the wine is completely clear, siphon it into disinfected wine bottles, and close the bottles with a screw cap.
If you use a screw cap, you can leave the bottles upright; if you use a cork, you must let the bottles stand upright for 3 days, and then lay them on their sides, raising them, as with a wine rack, keeping the cork moist; otherwise the cork will dry out and air will enter the wine and contaminate it.
And now is where your patience will reward you. Now that you have learned how to make homemade wine, your delicious wine will benefit greatly by allowing it to become even more delicious by aging it in the bottle for at least 3 months!
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