Home made wine..... I'm thinking about trying it...

Discussion in 'Beer & Ale' started by daveomak, Apr 4, 2013.

  1. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Some time back I needed help identifying a plum variety I had on the farm.....  Shiro, Japanese type plum is what it is...   Now I've been pruning and taking care of this tree for many years...  It owes me.....  so now I want to make wine from the fruit....   I have read about how complex and wonderful the wine is, from this fruit.... Problem is, the recipes call for racking 5 times and waiting 2 years for maturity... That is a bunch of BS as far as I'm concerned..... I've never made wine, and I ain't waiting 2 years to drink the stuff.....

    Sooooo, I need some sort of recipe and direction to head for a "quick" wine.....

    The kits are endless....  Any help would be appreciated.....  I do have a glass 5 gallon carboy...hydrometer left over from beer making days... (40 yrs ago)....   

    A little history, I enjoy Chillable Red box wine... and Shiraz and some Gewurztraminers... 

    Other than that, I am a beer lover..... 

    I saw all the wine making forums and I don't trust them nearly as much as I trust the folks on this forum, so don't even think about sending me that direction... 

    If wine making takes a hold here, maybe we can get a forum started....  

    I'm in no hurry..... Plums won't be ripe until the last week in July.... just thought I could start scavenging parts and supplies now.....

    Oh, there is a winery about 1 mile from my place that I can probably get some of the stuff from... I got some sodium or potassium metabisulfite from them about 2 years ago.... 


    My plum tree:


    ......................This tree probably puts out 50#'s of plums a year..........

    Last edited: Apr 4, 2013
  2. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    That tree is loaded and gorgeous!  [​IMG] gonna hang with you and see who else chimes in!

    BTW..got my Fermenting book this week!

  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Fermenting plums into wine ??    Maybe.     
  4. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    LOL....the Kraut book!  Who knows...we might could use that for wine making!  [​IMG]

    Last edited: Apr 4, 2013
  5. appwsmsmkr1

    appwsmsmkr1 Meat Mopper


    I found this on you tube which looks about right from my memory (my family used to make wine when i was a kid from grapes in our yard. that was at least 30 years ago and the tradition is lost by my Nono's (grandpa) and dad's passing)

    Im on the east coast and around here we have a lot of farmer's markets The large one also has a wine making section that has all of the supplies. Your definatly going to need barrels for that amount of plums.  Its called Corrado's Family Affair located in Clifton, NJ I dont believe they have an online purchasing but they do have a website. maybe by you there maybe something near your farmers markets?

    Yes i dont believe you have to wait two years, my family never did!!

    Yes i did crush the grapes with my feet like lucy and had an allergic reaction lol

    Im sorry i dont have more info for you. I do remember that my relatives enjoyed it. My uncle still makes his own but Ive lost touch with him.

    Hope this helps


  6. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member


    You could start out with some plum cider. Maybe pitch it with champagne yeast. I have a batch of apple cider (wine by now) that I forgot about that has been racked for at least 6 months. We like our cider dry and usually don't add sugar at the bottling stage. We also rack for a longer time frame. Probably should check on that batch, might be able to use it to remove the liner on the 55 gallon drum I have for a uds build!. Anyways here's a couple good links with some information.


  7. moikel

    moikel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Cider can be made with pears as well as apples so cant see why not plums.Funny thing about living in an Italian ,hood there is a lot of winemaking going on now. The paint & hardware at the end of my street sells every wine making thing from those big press things to you name it. 

    When I was up there today there were about 10 Italians in the wine making section.Apparently a chemist sets up saturday & you can pull in with your truck load of grapes ,he will crush some do some tests give you advice on the spot about sugar content,what yeasts etc. Same deal if you come back with your first pressing or any other stage of the process.The standard of home made wine has got a lot better over the years.

    The family had to promise nonno that they wouldn't let the wine side of the biz fold when he passed so they put some work into modernising it. No more crushing with your feet! The equipment is pretty flash not cheap either. I can get you their hand out on winemaking but I don't know about the plum idea. 
  8. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Mick, thanks.....  I think there is enough info on the web.... I was thinking of trading in the feet for the #12 meat grinder....   pop out the pits and run them through the grinder for a crusher...    It was interesting reading the flavor profile of these plums when made into wine....
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2013
  9. moikel

    moikel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I wish I genuinely knew something "out of my own head" to help but I don't have any hands on experience. When I had the cabin in the mountains it had a cherry tree but different yellow flesh red skin.The locals used to pick the fruit & make cherry wine then give me a few bottles.It was pretty good but only got drunk late in the evening so not sure how good a judge I was!
  10. Don't know if you can use this, but a friend gave me this recipe for Tomato wine. Haven't tried it yet, but summer is coming. He said it was really good.




    Here is the recipe for the tomato wine, which I changed after my initial batch. I actually cut back on the amount of sugar, because I thought that the wine was a little too sweet for my taste. I went down to 10 lbs. of sugar, so you might adjust yours after the first time.

    The Recipe contains: 12 lbs. of ripe tomatoes (sliced)

    12 lbs. of sugar

    4 lemons sliced thin (unpeeled)

    4 oranges sliced thin (unpeeled)

    4 boxes of seedless raisens (dark)

    Yeast (2 oz. cake)

    2 Gallons warm water

    Mix all the ingredients except the yeast into a crock or big vat (10 gallon). Put into a dark area (basement). Stir completely and crumble yeast over it. Stir and make sure it is totally mixed and dissolved. Put a piece of cheescloth over the top and every day mix it. The brew will stop fizzing in between 4-7 days. When it stops fizzing, strain it through a thick cheesecloth or muslin into large (gallon) bottles. Wait for the solid stuff to settle and then siphon the clear wine into bottles. One time it was cloudy, and my dad told me to stiphon it again thru cheescloth, and it was better. It will make about 5 gal. of wine.

    Hope, if you try it, that it comes out OK.
  11. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    SF, Thanks for the recipe.... I'm still trying to get my head around this wine making stuff..... Picking and piecing recipes and the trouble it will entail.....

  12. fly rodder

    fly rodder Newbie

    Hiya Dave,

    Like a lot of things, I guess, wine making is as simple or as complex as you make it.  Making wine is easy; the yeast do all the complicated work.  Making good wine is more involved, I guess.  I make my beer from grain, but stick with the kits for wine. I do make cider every fall as well and, frankly, I don't do much more than add some brown sugar and yeast and let it rip.  Here in central NY we have plenty of orchards that sell the raw juice, so I don't bother pressing it myself, but I have done it in years past.

    Plums won't have the same sugar concentration that grapes do, hence the addition of the sugar in recipes (white or brown or raw it's up you, just make sure to pick a fermentable one) to get the gravity higher.  Crushing is easy enough and there are plenty of presses you can DIY using some lumber and a car jack.  

    Racking is necessary only in that you let the yeast and junk settle out during each racking resulting in clearer wine and less sediment in your bottles.  Additionally, during racking you should use a wine whip (a plastic stirrer that you can attach to a drill) a couple of times to drive off any remaining CO2 and sulfur gas compounds that can leave wine fizzy in the bottle.  It takes about a minute after you transfer and then let the carboy sit for 7-10 days before transferring again.  Make sure you top off the carboy to the neck anytime you rack after primary fermentation is complete.  The less oxygen in the carboy, the better.  If you top off with water, you lose strength, but you can probably get away with a similar fruit wine or light dry grape wine.

    The maturation process is for certain harsh alcohols formed during fermentation to degrade and react with other compounds to more mellow flavors.  What tastes like paint remover after a month can improve to drinkable after six months and maybe to something that tastes really good after a year or two.  Some wines though are drinkable after a month or two in the bottle and get worse as they age.  The best thing, especially for YOUR experiments with YOUR fruit tree, is to let the fermentation process finish (2-3 months), bottle, and then sample at given intervals.  If you find that you like the taste more at bottling or more at 6 months, then you'll know how to proceed in the future.

    Good luck!
  13. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I appreciate everyone's help on this wine making deal.....    It all started out......   Plums are small, too much work to eat and the skin is bitter... Then I read the reviews on what a great wine they make.....  

    This wine business is way too much work for old Dave sooooooooo, I'm thinking of turning it into Jam/Jelly.........   run the plums through the KA strainer to get rid of the skins, add pectin and sugar....  put in jars......

    Continue to buy BOX wine....   What a cop out HUH !!!!    Anyway, I've got enough to do in the summer.... with the garden and all.... just never thought about making wine before....

    If anyone wants the  plums.....   come and get them.....  I really do have enough stuff to make jam out of.....   

  14. woodcutter

    woodcutter Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I tried to read this post to my wife and could not get through it. I was laughing hysterically.

    Last edited: May 3, 2013
  15. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Todd....... you think that's funny....... Try being me for a day.......    
    Last edited: May 4, 2013
  16. joeyfine

    joeyfine Fire Starter

    Plum wine is very good. I make wine yearly and but always stick with grapes. I learned from my great uncle the joys of pressing fruit into juice and then turning into the magic of alcohol. Right now I am in the process of combines different grapes into 1 tank. The end result will be called "blackout" which is a mix of amarone, montepulciano, muscato, merlot, and pinot grigio.
  17. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I never made any wine, but my Uncle used to. The best he ever made was from Wild Wineberries. If you have access to them, they are Awesome!!!

    Last edited: May 7, 2013
  18. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Joey, My-T-Fine lookin' wine to me....   You have talent my friend.....   [​IMG]  ...   

  19. joeyfine

    joeyfine Fire Starter

    I enjoy it. Here is my fall line up. From left to right blackout, amarone, muscato, & montepulciano.
  20. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Nice supply.....  

Share This Page