Vimto Wine

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As well as beers, I’ve been attempting to brew some wines. To start with I bought a couple of kits, Elderflower and a Cherry kit. Both turned out pretty well but I would advise that you leave the wine to mature for at least two months instead of drinking once bottled as these kits often say the wine is ready to drink after 7 days!

I’ve also discovered C J J Berry‘s books, or at least two of them anyway, both are full of excellent recipes and ideas. The one I recently acquired gives recipes for tinned fruit and fruit juices etc; below is a recipe I’ve adapted to suit my tastes.

Vimto 8 fl oz
Sugar 2lb 10 oz
Tartaric acid 2g
Citric acid 2g
Yeast Nutrient 1g
High alcohol yield yeast 1g
Water to 1 gallon

(My apologies for mixing the way I weigh ingredients but I like to live dangerously 😉 )

Dilute sugar in 2 pints of warm water, add acids and nutrient. Pour Vimto in demijohn and add sugared (and acid) water, fill to 1 gallon with cold water, add yeast and ferment.

I expect to follow usual guidelines as to bottling etc and I don’t expect this to be ready until at least summer of 2013.

Besides this I have a pomegranate wine which has now been fermenting for two months, I have apple, Haw berry and crab apple wine maturing in their respective demijohns. I also have another gallon of apple wine, this time with added cinnamon which will be ready for Xmas ’13. I also have a kit Rose wine which I hope will be ready for this Xmas, it is currently maturing nicely and will get bottled the week prior to Xmas.

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Treacle Ale update and Honey Beer

Fuggles

Fuggles (Photo credit: LoopZilla)

The treacle ale is now well on it’s way to being drinkable after I bottled it last week. It had a lovely treacly aroma and I can’t wait to sample it at Xmas. Another beer I have on the go which again I hope will be ready by Xmas is honey beer (recipe below). I am really enjoying these experiments in beer making. I just hope my wine is ready otherwise I will be in trouble though 😉

Honey Beer:
Honey 1lb
Hops( I used fuggles) ½ oz
Juice of 1 lemon
Water to 1 gal
Beer yeast and nutrient

Boil hops in 4 pints of water for 30 minutes. Strain hops, stir in honey and let simmer for a further 5 minutes. Top to 1 gallon with cold water, when wort is cool and juice of lemon, nutrient and yeast. Ferment as normal then siphon into primed bottles and leave for at least 1 week

Treacle Ale

English: Lyle's Golden Syrup in a resealable t...

English: Lyle’s Golden Syrup in a resealable tin. This image was created by Whitebox, and is licensed under the following license (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Treacle Ale (Black Beer)

Golden Syrup 1lb
Black Treacle 1/2 lb
Water 7 pints
Yeast and yeast nutrient

Dissolve syrup and treacle in 1 ½ pints of warm water, add the remaining water cold, stir well and mix in yeast nutrient and yeast. Cover and ferment till finish. Siphon into primed bottles, seal and store for at least 1 week

Recipe taken from Easy Beer Making, Real Ale in 21 days

I now have 1 gallon of this brew fermenting away in the cupboard, updates as and when they occur. I’m hoping this will be a nice enjoyable pint ready in time for Xmas

November

The depression I suffer continues unabated, in fact it’s even worse since I had a heart attack in late May. It has become debilitating to the point where I cannot work or function in many day to day situations. It reached boiling point for me a couple of weeks ago when I overdosed and ended up in hospital for 30 hours. Not the best moments in my life! Thank goodness I have someone in my life that cares for the person behind this depression, without her I don’t know where I’d be.

 

The one thing I seem to be able to do is read. In the early summer I treated myself to and Android tablet PC and although it is useful for many other things I mainly use the kindle and library software to download (loan) and read books on it. I love printed books but since I’ve owned this tablet PC I seem to read avariciously, which I guess is a good thing.

 

The wine and beer making continues, I currently have some rose wine fermenting which I hope will be drinkable at Christmas. It came in kit form and says it should be ready to drink in 2 months which should be just right for Christmas. I’m also about to start my beer brewing for Christmas, I’m brewing one of the better ales on the market because the holidays deserve something a bit better than usual.

 

Changes

English: Various common fermentation vessels f...

English: Various common fermentation vessels for homebrewing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As with us all, things change, life changes, our hobbies come and go yet some things stay constant. I have not hit the keys in menace for quite a while yet the desire still remains. My interests have changed a little yet I still love watching films, reading books and listening to music. I seem to have no creative writing in me yet still I have the desire to share something.

One interest that I have resurrected in the last few months is home brewing beer and wine. I recently barrelled my fourth barrel of homebrew beer and I have a barrel (40 UK pints) of cider. I brew these from kits readily available from a local store and so far the only way I deviate from the instructions is that I use dextrose rather than white sugar.

I have been overjoyed with the results I have achieved so far and it is something that I am to gain more experience in as time goes by.

I am also attempting homebrew wine, the sort where I go and gather hedgerow fruits, then ferment into wine. This is a long process often taking over a year to complete. I hope the rewards are worth it. Only time will tell.

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