Make-your-own-wine update

As so many of you have memorized Reassembler in its entirity, you will no doubt recall that in the Spring my wife and I made our own wine at a local joint called Barleycorns.

Recap: Dump juice in sterile bucket, add yeast, add wood chips, seal; return weeks later to bottle, minus yeast and wood obviously.

Anyway, we made 24 bottles of Chardonnay and 24 bottles of Pinot Noir. I promised an update once they’d aged, so here it is.

The Chardonnay is turning into a decent table wine. Nothing fancy. The wife of one of my colleagues actually likes it.

The Pinot Noir at this point I’d review as “swallowable”. (Might give that one six more months before trying again.)


5 thoughts on “Make-your-own-wine update

  1. my grandfather, who came through ellis island from naples, made his own wine. in our cellar he had these HUGE barrels. every year he would get the grapes from the train, take them home and make wine. i’d make it with him, but i was too young to realize what i was doing. i wish i had learned…

    that’s cool you are making your own wine. enjoy!

    p.s. if i may use this comment to refer to a previous post – make polenta with chicken stock instead of water, add garlic, onions, and cheese, it’s pretty tasty…

  2. cl – right, if you can hide the fact that it’s polenta, it’s okay :)

    great story about your grandfather! If I had a nickel for everything I wish I’d paid more attention to in my salad days….

    a year or two ago a friend served me grappa made by his tiny italian neighbor, 25 years old-plus in an old ginger ale bottle. like pure fire. actually he then served us some convention off the shelf grappa and I remember thinking, it’s nasty either way so I’d rather drink the firewater and feel like a stud. :)

  3. We tried making mead while in our dorm room while in college.

    Process: obtain humidifier container; attempt to make it airtight (probably using duct tape); fill with honey (and maybe water?); add brewer’s yeast (but we were in college, without cars, and only had baking yeast); allow gasses to escape for several days, but no air to get back in (this involves a rubber tube and a bowl of water); open and drink.

    Result: non-fatal, but tastes like stale pizza dough.

    Conclusion: 1. better equipment and the right kind of yeast might have yielded better results; OR 2. there’s a good reason why nobody drinks mead anymore.

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