If you've long been interested in brewing or fermenting your own alcohol but aren't sure you have the patience (or head for measurements) required to achieve the delicate balance of an IPA or pinot noir, you may be considering starting on a smaller scale with some simple fruit wines. Not only can these wines be easy and fun to create, they can provide you with the perfect way to make use of fresh fruit that may be just a bit past its prime. Read on to learn more about the process of creating your own homemade plum wine.
What ingredients will you need to make plum wine?
Like other country fruit wines, plum wine has a fairly short ingredient list. This wine can be scaled up or down, as long as the original proportions are maintained.
For each 5 pounds of plums, you'll need 3 pounds of sugar and 1 gallon of water. To finish off your wine, you'll need just a single teaspoon of fresh lemon juice and a packet of cider yeast.
You'll also need some supplies, including a fermentation bucket, a siphon hose and funnel, several demijohns (large, bulbous bottles designed to hold multiple gallons of liquid), sterilization solution, and some wine bottles for your final product.
How is plum wine fermented?
To ferment and brew your plum wine, you'll start by peeling your plums and washing them thoroughly. After adding them to your sterilized fermentation bucket, crush these plums to release their juices. If you'd prefer your wine to have a nuttier flavor, you'll want to keep the pits in this mixture, but removing them can provide your wine with a fresher, crisper flavor.
Next, boil your gallon of water and pour it over your crushed plum mixture inside the fermentation bucket. After covering the bucket for a few days, you're ready to add the lemon juice, sugar, and yeast. Again, cover your fermentation bucket and leave it in a warm, dry, dark place like a garage, pantry, or closet. You'll want to periodically swish or stir your mixture to ensure that the fermentation takes place evenly throughout the bucket.
After another few days of fermenting, you'll be able to transfer your pre-wine to the demijohns to finish off this process. By using a siphoning hose and funnel, you'll be able to perform this process without spilling a drop. Ensure that the demijohns are airtight by using an airlock lid, and allow this wine to sit in a dark place for another couple of weeks.
At this point, you'll be able to either transfer the wine to new, clean demijohns or pour it directly into the bottles. The longer your wine ferments, the sweeter it will become, but your plum wine can be consumed just a few short weeks after fermentation has begun. For more wine options, check out a supplier, such as Wine Candy.