27 OctExtreme Happiness in Home Made Wine Making
How I find extreme happiness and joy by making my own wine
Homemade wine making is a wonderful experience. Picking out the fruit and deciding on a recipe is only the beginning. Cleaning and cutting up the fruit can be tedious at times, but I get a surreal feeling as I go through the fruit. Selecting only the best specimens and discarding the bruised and battered pieces. Then comes preparing the must for the primary. Measuring the fruit, doing this I never use a scale or measuring cup. I just make sure I come close to the recipe I’ve decided on.
With some recipes I get to sanitize my hands and smash the fruit to smithereens. If I used my feet none of my friends would drink it. Getting your hands dirty is a blast, and makes it more of “hands-on” experience. Carefully measuring the chemicals, sugar, and water makes it feel like you are preparing your next masterpiece. You start to imagine how the wine is going to turn out, picturing the final color in your mind, relishing how the body will turn out, and already starting to design a label in your head.
The anticipation while your at work the next day is always exciting. When you finally arrive home you rush over to the primary bucket and check for the tell tale signs of an active fermentation. You see the bubbles and do a little happy fermentation dance. Next I always put my nose up close and smell the yeast working. It reminds me of driving through Milwaukee. For you beer lovers out there a trip to Milwaukee is a must (pun intended). There are many breweries with free tours and of course Free Beer!
Each day as you punch down the must your excitement grows. Your next little baby is taking shape. As you move into the secondary stage you start to feel like a protector, making sure the bung is nice and tight and the air lock is set. Gotta protect the wine from all that pesky oxygen. Once the batch has been racked a few times and we get to the aging process, patience is the key. I go a little crazy during this stage. Every few days I go and peek at it. I check the color and make sure nothing weird has happened, or started to grow in there. Sometimes I ease the pain of waiting by printing the labels. I also make sure I have enough bottles and corks ready to go.
Then finally the day of bottling comes. I usually invite someone over to help. Having a friend over for this can double the excitement. They can also help to determine the amount of sweetening the batch needs. Once we get the sweetening worked out, we pull off a bottle (or two) for us to enjoy during the bottling. As the corked bottles start to pile up, I feel a huge sense of accomplishment. I start to think how my loyal fans are going to like this latest batch. After the entire batch is bottled and labeled, I like to sit and look at all the bottles as I reflect on the joy I had in creating them. Then I uncork another one and start thinking about what I’m going to make next
If you’ve never made homemade wine before, I highly recommend starting. It’s not as difficult as it may seem and I promise you’ll love it when that first batch is done.