How do you make homemade wine from juice?


Quick Answer

To create homemade wine from grape juice, kill the wild yeast found in the juice, add winemaking yeast to initiate the fermentation process, add sulfite as a preservative, monitor the wine’s flavor while it ferments, and siphon the liquid into a bottle when finished. Sanitize winemaking equipment and wine bottles thoroughly before use, as bacteria can affect the taste of homemade wine.

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Full Answer

To begin the winemaking process, sterilize all of the equipment by boiling, bleaching or adding campden (sulfite) tablets; add 1 campden tablet per gallon of grape juice to kill wild yeast; and let the juice sit for six to 12 hours. Calculate the alcohol percentage in the juice with a hydrometer. Measure 2 ounces of water per 5-gram packet of yeast, bring the water to a boil, and cool it to 95 degrees Fahrenheit before adding yeast to it and covering it with aluminum foil. Let the mixture sit for 15 minutes, and then stir it with a sanitized spoon. Mix the yeast solution into a bucket of juice thoroughly with the spoon, secure a piece of plastic wrap over the container, and let the mixture ferment until the hydrometer reads below 1.030.

Siphon the wine into a sanitized and sulphited 5-gallon glass fermenter, and cover the top with an airlock. After one to two months, siphon the wine into another fermenter, and repeat the process in another three months when an inch of sediment accumulates. Continue to ferment the wine until the hydrometer reads .990. To bottle the wine, add sulphite to the bottles and siphoning equipment, and then use an auto-siphon to transfer the wine to the bottles. Cork the bottles, stand them upright for three to five days, and then store the bottles sideways; allow the wine to mature for several months.

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