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How to make organic wine

DianaSmith

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First and foremost, knowing exactly what organic wine is, is the key to making it properly.

Grapes grown organically are the first thing required for making of organic wine. When a certain fruit or vegetable is grown organically it means there were no pesticides and/or chemicals involved in its growing. Many manufacturers of wine tend to break the rules of organic. It certainly pays off more to include some manipulating in wine-making, just to have it last longer and taste better. But since you have decided to make wine yourself, we don’t question your aspiration to get that organic wine just right, in a proper way.

So, what you first need to do is gather supplies. Naturally, this sounds like a logical step to take and you are wondering why do we even mention it. Well, because more often than not beginners in wine making tend to omit certain things which then leads to the wine getting ruined by bacteria or bugs. To avoid that, gather these supplies:

- An airlock

- A 1-gallon carboy (a glass container with a small neck)

- Clean wine bottles with corks or screw caps

- A 2-gallon crock or glass jar

- A thin plastic tube to be used for siphoning

- Campden tablets (optional)

Once you have all this, the games of wine making can begin! For the record, wine can be made of any type of fruit. So, if you want to experiment and try something unusual choose something else rather than berries and grapes. The most important thing is to choose fruit at the peak of its flavor.

Cleaning the fruit

Washing the fruit is easy - clean it of any dirt and/or rotten parts. Remove the leaves. Rinse it thoroughly. Done!

You’d think everyone is cleaning the fruit before doing anything with it, right? Well, not really. Some wine-makers like not to wash the fruit before crushing it. Given that fruit has natural yeasts on its skin, wine can be made with using only the yeast from the fruit's skin and the air. The negative aspect of not washing the fruit is that wild yeast get to grow and they are likely to produce foul flavors. While, when you wash the fruit you can control the taste and adjust it to you liking.

Crushing the fruit

Crushing the fruit is done with your hands or a potato masher. All you should do is squeeze the fruit so that it releases its juices. You should repeat the process of until the crock you have previously put washed grapes in is filled with 1/2 inches of the top with fruit juice. If there isn’t enough fruit and juice, top it off with filtered water.

To kill bacteria and wild yeast, add a a Campden tablet. It will release sulfur dioxide into the mixture which will effectively kill wild yeast and bacteria. If you’d rather not use a tablet, you can alternatively pour 2 cups of boiling water over the fruit.

Also, when using water, avoid tap as it contains additives and it will affect the taste of your wine. Make it your business to use filtered or spring water only.

Add honey for sweetness of your organic wine. Limiting honey to two cups will give your wine not so sweet a taste. You can, of course, add more if you like your wine sweeter. If you don’t like honey, you can add (brown) sugar instead of honey.

After this is done, it’s time you added the yeast! Stir it into the mixture with a long-handled spoon.

Fermenting the Wine

To keep bugs out of the crock, cover it with something firm yet such a fabric that will allow air to flow in. Perfect cloth would a t-shirt or a stretch cloth. Just make sure you secure it in place with a large rubber band. The covered crock should be placed in a warm area overnight, with a temperature around 70 degrees. The day after you have made the mixture, you should follow the process of stirring it thoroughly.

The stirring should go on for 4 days:

- 1st day - stir every 4 hours or so- other 3 days - a few times per day

You’ll know fermentation process when you see it - as the yeast moves into action, the mixture should start bubbling. This will lead to delicious wine.

Three days after it begins, the bubbling will slow down which is a sign it’s time to strain and siphon the liquid.

- Siphon the liquid into your carboy for longer-term storage

- Affix the airlock to the opening to prevent oxygen from coming in and spoiling your wine while allowing for the release of gas

Let the wine age for nine months. If you are in a rush to try it, then leave it for at least one month.


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