After 24 hours, the mixture will look quite different! Start by waking up your yeast. This is an arena of winemaking where I lean more toward the heritage winemakers—I do not take alcohol readings on my wines. I’ve done it in the past with batches, and it’s definitely interesting information to have, especially when you are starting out! Another common wine additive are Campden tablets. If you are looking for more resources on making fruit wines, here are some of my favorite brewing books to check out: You're going to be shocked by how easy it is to make fruit wine! Just make sure your airlock has water in it (it will eventually evaporate) as your yeast does its work. Store in a cool dark spot (if using corks, turn the bottles on their sides to keep the corks wet) and age for at least 30 days, but preferably 6-12 months for the best flavor. There are a lot of ways to make a must (stomping on grapes, anyone?) Many (I could even say most) people who make wine at home take specific gravity readings using a hydrometer throughout the winemaking process to determine the fermentation levels and alcohol content. You can purchase them in a bundle with an airlock and cork. If your wine doesn’t restart fermentation within a week, that means your yeast has topped out on the alcohol level in the wine and can no longer “eat” any more sugar—this is good, because it means the back sweetening will stay at the current sweetness level. For some data-minded folks, it can be an incredibly helpful data set to use throughout the process. The recipe of this fragrant and tasty beverage is pretty easy, thus even fledgling winemakers would be able to make it. You can easily get started making wine for under $60. Because your primary fermentation will have fresh fruit in it, which we’ll later filter out. Alright, now onto the actual ingredients that make the magic happen. Country and fruit wines, including this strawberry wine, are traditionally still wines—meaning they have no carbonation and the yeast is inactive (or, ahem, dead). I honestly have no idea how boozy my wines are other than to be able to take a sip and say, “Yup, that’s a strong one!”. Tie up the bottleneck with gauze and leave it for 5-7 days in a dark place with a temperature of 61-77F° / 16-25°C. Add in your preferred additives. Once the primary fermentation has slowed down, it’s time to strain out the fruit and rack (what it’s called when you move the wine from one container to another) the wine into a carboy. During primary fermentation (the first 1-2 weeks), you’ll want to check on it daily. Plus we use an oxygen wash (which is just a form of hydrogen peroxide) as an extra layer of sanitization before making our wine. Since I like to use whole fruit in my fruit wines, I like to keep the whole fruit in there for at least a week before moving on to secondary fermentation. If you taste the wine and it’s too dry, no worries, we can now rack the wine and back sweeten it. After 5-7 days when you see the signs of active fermentation (foaming, hissing sound, and fermented odor), pour the juice from the sediment through a straw. Both work just fine for making wine. Throughout this post, you’ll see a theme of me giving you multiple ways to achieve the same result—think of it as an opportunity to try out what method works best for you. The free Living Wholefully Starter Guide is packed full of tips, tricks, recipes, and a 14-day meal plan to get you started on the road to vibrant health. This is simply a big ole glass jug! We brew almost exclusively in one gallon batches at our house, so we have an entire fleet of one gallon carboys. If you purchase a product after clicking an affiliate link, I receive a small percentage of the sale for referring you, at no extra cost to you. But turns out—it doesn’t! Cap, cork, or close the tops of the bottles. Why freeze it first? Copyright © 2010–2020 Back to Her Roots, LLC. Many folks (myself included) prefer to do it after bottling to clear up the carboy for their next batch of wine! I use water straight from our Berkey water filter. This yeast will eat some of the sugar you add, die off once the wine reaches 12% alcohol, and then the rest of the sugar will be leftover for the wine to taste sweet. This is important because adding it into the wine before it’s rehydrated can shock the yeast. What you are concerned about right now is sweetness. The key problem here lies in obtaining strawberry juice. The only real advantage here is that it’s slightly easier to see bubbles moving (which means you can keep an eye on how active your fermentation is) on the S-bubbler. If using data to track your wine’s fermentation and alcohol growth sounds fun to you, grab yourself a hydrometer and go on with your bad self! Fill the container up to ¾ of its volume; otherwise the must might overflow during the fermentation. Wild yeast: The OG way to make wine—by embracing the yeast that’s already on the fruit and in the air around you! Keep repeating until the majority of the fruit is out of the wine. Without sterilization and added preservatives, homemade wines need to be at least 14% alcohol content to be shelf-stable. Not only is it fun to sample, it also helps you better understand the fermentation process at work. All this agitation will restart any sluggish fermentation quite actively, so I recommend placing the carboy in a place where you can keep an eye on it easily (but still out of direct sunlight). You can apply these same tools and processes to almost any fruit out there, so once you’ve nailed down Strawberry Wine (a great wine for beginners), you can let your imagination—and what’s in season—inspire your next batch. Don’t worry if not all the sugar is dissolved. This should be a big bucket, a large jar, a crock, or specifically designed fermenter—which is what we use and will be showing in this post. In a small bowl, combine about a cup of water with the yeast, set aside to wake up for 10 minutes. How you bottle your wine is a personal decision! The final sweetness of your wine is determined mostly by two factors: how much sugar you add (of course) and how much sugar your yeast can eat. For natural fermentation we’ll add some raisins, otherwise you can use wine yeast. You're going to be shocked by how easy it is to make fruit wine (and how delicious the results are)! When you’re ready to move onto sparkling wine, Wild Wine Making has some great information about that process.