29 September 2013
The wet weather followed by a hot summer and then more rain has produced enough grapes to make us think about wine making.
Skye was interested.
The first stage involves removing stalks, washing and pulping the grapes...something traditionally done by trampling.......
1 October 2013
Two days on and it's time to strain the grape juice (one gallon is all we got from all those grapes).
Next up is the chemistry and physics bit - adjusting the specific gravity by adding extra sugar. My able assistant checks the hydrometer reading.
Finally into the demi-john with some wine yeast and yeast nutrient, on with the airlock and let fermentation commence (we hope).
27 October 2013
Nearly four weeks later and the wine has stopped bubbling (fermentation has finished) so it's time to rack the wine into a second demi-john.
In the jug by the side of the lower demi-john is a little of the wine plus a Campden tablet (which prevents oxidation and bactererial contamination during bottlingand syphoning) and a Fermentation Stopper (which prevents further fermentation after bottling).
Note all the sediment in the bottom of the first demi-john.
Note also the state of the room with wind fall pears, a courgette (to the right of the top demi-john), various dog towels, a large white tub with dog food and card board box ex-Marie which will magically find its way into recycling with no further imput from Marie.
17 November 2013
Three weeks later and time to rack again
Skye is still keeping an eye on proceedings
1 December 2013
Another two weeks and the time has come, firstly to rack once more to remove the last sediment (hardly any)...
the it's bottling time...
Almost the final operation is putting the cork in the bottle (using an old corker ex - Uncle Philip)
First soak the corks briefly in near boiling water...
... then place in corking machine and squeeze..
...finally press the cork into the bottle - MAGIC!
3 December 2013
...not to be sampled until Summer 2014.