Super Simple (and cheap) Wine Making

Super Simple (and cheap) Wine Making: I’ve been brewing for years. I started out with a huge complicated kit and there are times when it’s necessary to break that out, but now that I have a good understanding of exactly what’s going on I’ve boiled the process down to streamline it.

To do this you will need

* 1 jug of sugar based fruit juice (or any liquid with a high amount of sugar)

* 1 packet of wine or champaign yeast

* 1 (maybe two) condoms… have an extra in case one breaks when you apply it.

Open the fruit juice and pour out about 2 cups of juice. Be sure not to contaminate the mouth of the jug with any bacteria (like drinking directly from the jub)
Open the champaign yeast and pour into the jug.
Put the lid back on the jug, shake well and then take the lid back off again. 
Stretch the condom (or large baloon) over the opening of the fruit juice jug so it seals off the jug from outside air.
Use a small pin/needle to poke 2-3 holes in the top of the condom/balloon to let air escape. 

As the yeast ferment the juice they release Carbondioxide gas. This gas expands to fill the jug and then the condom/balloon and creates a positive pressure in the jug. This positive pressure keeps outside air and contaminates from entering the jug. The small holes in the condom/balloon allow the gas to vent at a controlled pace, keeping a positive pressure in the jug. 

When the condom/balloon completely deflates and stays deflated for 2-3 days your wine is ready to consume. There will probably be a small layer of sediment at the bottom of the jug. Pour off the wine and leave the sediment (it tastes bad). This sediment is the primarily dead yeast yeast (it’s actually very nutritious, but tastes horrible). 

You also have the option of freezing the wine solid in a deep freeze for 2-3 days. This will help cold condition your wine and help to clear it. Be sure to let the wine completely thaw before drinking. 

If you want to make MEAD instead of fruit or juice wine, add 2-3 lbs of warmed water (microwave it for a minute or so, nothing above 80 degrees) to a gallon jug and water to a gallon. Warm water helps the yeast get rolling and will help to dissolve the honey. Stir until all honey is dissolved and then throw in the yeast packet and seal with the air lock (condom in this case). Add fruit juice or other flavors as needed. Vanilla bean or extract works well. Other spices to try would be pre-mixed pie spices like apple or pumpkin pie spices. Try 2-3 tablespoons per gallon.


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