You might not realize this about my dear husband S, but he's a tad bit hard to buy for. Last fall, when I went on the Wine and Chocolate tour with my sisters-in-law, I got a great idea for a present for S. I bought him a gift certificate to make his own wine, and my mom went in on it with me. And, so far, it's a hit! He's loving it.
My cutie patootie husband.
So, we went to the wine store, Two Corks and a Bottle, and we tasted wine! Then we brought some more wine home to taste. After all that tasting, which was fun all by itself, S chose the kind of wine he wanted to make. And, this last week, we met around lunchtime one day to sprinkle in the yeast and start making wine!
Elwin and S
One of the two store owners, Elwin, took us to their production room where we learned a bit about their own wine making process. And, we took some sneak peeks at other people's wine making endeavors.
There's the grape juice that will become S's wine.
The thing floating in the juice is a bag of oak chips - this is a really great way to get that oaky flavor in the wine throughout - Elwin said, actually better than in an oak barrel, because it moves throughout the liquid.
They had a few oak barrels around too, though.
Elwin showed us another bin with wine that was already fermenting - see the difference?
But this is even more amazing - this wine has been fermenting only for a few HOURS - already a big visual change from that juice.
Elwin readied S's yeast.
He explained it's pretty much just like the yeast you would bake with.
Elwin instructed S to hit the juice, not the oak bag.
He followed the instructions!
That's it! We're making wine!
After it ferments for six weeks, they will pull it through that wine press.
And put the wine in a barrel like this, ready for bottling.
We will get to have a bottling party with some of our friends. Then, with this particular wine, it should stay in the bottle for about seven months before drinking it. So, it should be ready to drink for the holidays! It should be fun to taste it along the way and see how it changes.
See you soon.