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Wine Recipes

This page of wine recipes is provided by our customers and friends, for which we are extremely grateful. Why not give them a try? If you have a recipe you'd like us to post, please send it along!

Jug Wine

This wine recipe comes to us from Kritsofur J. Morris. Thanks for your input!

"This is the first wine I ever made. It's a very easy recipe. Great for a first-timer!"

2 cans frozen 100% grape juice
1 gallon distilled water
3 ½ cups sugar
1 package yeast
1 glass gallon jug
1 punching balloon


  1. Thaw grape juice and put in sterilized glass jug.
  2. Warm distilled water to 110 degrees Fahrenheit and dissolve sugar in water.
  3. Add yeast and mix well.
  4. Using a funnel pour water/sugar yeast mixture into jug until about 1 inch from top.
  5. Rinse inside of balloon.
  6. Stretch balloon over bottle and tape it securely.
  7. Put in a warm dark place; be sure to give room for the balloon to expand. It will get quite large.
  8. After 30 days (or longer if you like) remove balloon and carefully strain wine with cheesecloth into another jug.
  9. Enjoy!!!!


Strawberry/Rhubarb Mead

This recipe was provided by Chris Brodie of Iowa. Thanks, Chris!

4 lb. or 64 oz. of clover honey
1 lb. frozen rhubarb
1 lb. frozen strawberries
3 tsp. of citric acid
1 tsp. of yeast nutrient
4-5 drops of pectic enzyme
potassium sorbate
sparkalloid wine clarifier
1 gallon glass apple cider/type jug


  1. Bring 1 ½- 2 qts. water to boil in large pan.
  2. Add 3 lb. or 48 oz. of clover honey, stirring right away to keep it from the bottom. Stir until boiling, simmer on low heat for 20-30 minutes.
  3. Add one pound each of frozen strawberries and diced rhubarb, and simmer an additional ½ hour.
  4. Let sit overnight to cool and extract flavor.
  5. Pour mixture through a screen of some sort or cheese cloth into another container.
  6. Pour mixture into your glass jug, to the level of the neck.
  7. Add the citric acid, yeast nutrient, pectic enzyme.
  8. Rehydrate your yeast in 95-100 degree water (Fahrenheit) for 15-20 minutes, and add to your mixture in jug.
  9. Cap and shake well to dissolve the ingredients added.
  10. Remove cap, and fit some cheesecloth with a rubber band over the opening, or an airlock with a cotton ball covering the opening.

The must will take 1-2 days to start fermenting; wait until the vigorous fermentation has taken place (the froth will disappear after about a week), then fit with an airlock so that the anaerobic fermentation will occur. Rack each time you notice a firm sediment building up on the bottom of the jug. Take this opportunity to add the additional 12 oz of honey; this will feed the fermentation at a slower pace, but will allow for a higher alcoholic content of the finished wine. After about 3-4 months, fermentation will be negligible to nonexistent; at this time kill the yeast to stop fermentation with potassium sorbate. This is also a good time to add sparkalloid, to clear the wine and allow all sediment suspended to form a sludge at the bottom of the jar. After you have killed the fermentation, let the jug sit for a good 3 weeks to a month, and very carefully siphon the wine off of the sediment into 750 ml bottles and cork. I can usually get 4 bottles out of a jug after racking the good stuff off of the sediment. Age for at least 8 months, the longer the better, although what I sampled at bottling was excellent.


Grapefruit Wine

A. Colaire from the Dominican Republic sent us this one:

5 large West Indian grapefruits (preferably from the Dominican Republic!)
3 ½ pounds brown sugar
2 tablespoon concentrated tea liquid (Tetley, Red Rose, Typhoo, etc.)
1 Imperial gallon water
1 pound dried raisins
1 package yeast


  1. Extract juice from grapefruits into a sterile container.
  2. Place sugar into water and boil until completely dissolved and allow to cool down to approximately 110 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. Add grapefruit juice, raisins and tea and place all in a properly sterilized fermentation vessel and add the yeast.
  4. Place fermentation trapping device and allow to ferment for six weeks. After six weeks, rack, i.e. siphon off the clear wine from the bottom sediment into bottles, cork and place them horizontally allowing at least least four weeks for the anaerobic or secondary fermentation process.


Farmer's Wine

This recipe was given to us by Jim Cox; it's another easy balloon wine.

"I hope someone can get some use out this little recipe because it does make a nice 'dinner' drink."

1/4 teaspoon Active Dry Yeast
1-Qt unsweetened grape juice
1-Qt Cranberry Juice Cocktail
3 ½ cups sugar


  1. Dissolve yeast in lukewarm water.
  2. Combine grape juice, Cranberry Cocktail and sugar in a large bowl. Add yeast to mixture.
  3. Transfer juice mixture to a clean gallon jug and fill the jug, to the neck, with water
  4. Cap with a large, strong balloon. Let stand in a warm place for five (5) weeks.
  5. Serve chilled.


Great-grandmother Dandelion Wine Recipe

This recipe was provided by William A. Rost, who transcribed it from a recipe written by Mrs. Levenia Eager Meshey in 1972.

2 quarts of dandelion flowers (no stem on flowers)
One gallon boiling water
Juice of two lemons
2 ½ lb. granulated sugar

Use 4 quarts boiling water to scald the flowers in an earthen crock. Let stand for 24 hours. Cover the crock with a cloth. Squeeze or strain juice through a clean muslin bag but not too hard. Let it drip out until most is all dry then squeeze not too hard or your wine will be bitter. Add juice of two lemons to one gallon of juice and 2 ½ lb. of granulated sugar. Put sugar in the glass jugs before you add the lemon juice and flower juice. Set in the sun to ferment until you see no more bubbles in the jugs and the bees stop coming. When the juice overflows at the top of the jugs, add water to fill up whenever it's overflowed. Add the clear water to the top of jug when you see no more bubbles. Takes about 2 ½ to three months to ferment. Strain through a muslin bag and put in clean jugs and seal tight. I put a small piece of muslin over the top neck of jugs and a stone on top to keep out the bugs while fermenting.

P.S. As the water evaporates at the top neck of jug, add fresh cold water to make sure the neck is full. You have to fill this once or twice a week if the sun is very hot, as you need hot sun to make good wine.


Elderberry Wine Recipe

This recipe was provided by Penny Thomas of Scotland. It was adapted from Mollie Harris' country wine book.

Hope you like this recipe. What I particularly like about it is that there is no added bits and pieces - just good old country stuff. Made it last year and it's nearly all been drunk! Will make lots more next time!!

3 lb elderberries (remove the stalks)
3 lb sugar
1 lemon
1 lb raisins (could use sultanas)
½ ounce of yeast

To remove the berries from the stalks, use a fork.

Put berries in a sanitized bucket and pour on gallon of boiling water. Mash the berries against the side of the bucket then put in the raisins. Cover and leave for 3 or 4 days. Strain and tip the liquid back into bucket; add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Squeeze the lemon and add all the juice (to get the most juice from your lemon, cut it in half and put in microwave for 30 seconds). Sprinkle on the yeast. Cover for 3 days, strain again and pour wine into demijohn. Fix airlock and leave until bubbling completely stops (I left mine for about 5 months). Strain and bottle off. The wine could be ready to drink in about 4 months (if too young leave it for much longer). Has a lovely red color.


Jalapeno Wine

This recipe was given to us by Bob Endicott of the Ferry Creek Winery in Ft. Walton Beach, FL. After he made one gallon, he deeply regretted it and claimed he should have made five gallons!

"To make the wine hot enough to melt the fillings in your teeth, leave the seeds in; for a milder 'yankee' version take them out. This is a fun wine to cook with. It can be used to enliven chicken or stir-fry dishes."

1 US Gallon

12 fresh jalapeno peppers
1 box raisins (l5 oz.)
2 pounds sugar
1 ½ teaspoon acid blend
10 drops pectic enzyme
3 ½ quarts water
1 campden tablet (crushed)
Montrachet yeast


  1. Trim off the stems of the peppers.
  2. Using 2 cups of water, chop the peppers and raisins in a blender until smooth like a thick milkshake. Put into primary fermenter along with 3 quarts water. Add all other ingredients except yeast. Let stand 24 hours in the covered container.
  3. After the 24 hours are up, add yeast and re-cover. Ferment on the pulp, stirring every day, for 5 to 7 days, then rack to secondary. Continue with normal fermentation per your usual method.

Take care when handling raw jalapenos. These little suckers can burn your skin (especially those sensitive areas and, of course, protect those eyes)!


Rhubarb Wine

This is an award-winning recipe provided by Don Schiller from Minnesota, who says it makes "a wonderfully fruity 'rhubarb pie' - tasting wine!"

6 US Gallons

14.5 lbs. Canadian Red rhubarb
14.5 lbs. sugar
1 packet (5 gr.) Cote de Blancs yeast
1 1/4 tsp. yeast nutrient


  1. Slice rhubarb thinly and cover with sugar in stainless steel or glass pan. Cover pan with cheesecloth.
  2. After two days, strain off juice and wash out sugar remaining in the pulp by stirring the pulp with cold water,
    then strain again. Add enough water to make six gallons plus one quart and pour into six-gallon carboy. Save one quart as "sweet reserve" by putting into a Ziplock bag and freezing (the use of the reserve juice will produce a significantly more "fruity" wine). Do not add Campden tablets/sulfite at this time as it will reduce the taste of rhubarb in the final wine.
  3. Add yeast and yeast nutrient and ferment at a temperature of 60° F.
  4. Transfer the wine after three months and top off by adding the one-quart "sweet reserve" juice. Add tartaric acid to raise the titratable acidity (TA) to 0.76, if needed.
  5. After five months, check sulfite level and add Campden tablets/metabisulfite to bring SO2 level to 50-60 PPM.
    TA of my wine was 0.81 at bottling.
  6. Bottle and enjoy!

The rhubarb should be small stalk red rhubarb as that is better flavor. Young rhubarb is best.

Not adding sulfite at the beginning will help keep some additional flavor. The sweet reserve is taken out of the main batch, so no sulfite is added anywhere until after the fermentation is done.

From my experience, rhubarb is sometimes tough to start because the acid is often high. It often works best to make a good yeast starter before adding to the must.


Tea Bag Wine

Provided by Frank Buffone, Williamson, NY

Dear Grapestompers,
I'd like to submit a wine recipe for your consideration. It's not an original of mine, but one that I've extensively modified.

A dry tea wine is useful for blending with other wines that may seem a little flat or dull, due to low tannin content. The finished wine is characteristic of the initial tea used. This is a wine to make at any time, perhaps when other ingredients are not readily available.

5 US gallons

Ingredients (mind how they're added below!)

Group A:
40 to 50 teabags, depending on the strength desired. If flavoring/aroma is desired, add additional 15 to 20 herbal or fruit flavored tea bags of your choice.
3 lb. chopped raisins or sultanas
3 medium oranges, well washed and chopped in a food processor
2 lemons, well washed and chopped in a food processor
1 cup Steen's Pure Cane Syrup OR 2 cups pure maple syrup
10 lb. white sugar
1 lb. brown sugar

Group B:
2 tsp. acid blend
3 tsp. yeast nutrient
1 tsp. yeast energizer
3 tsp. pectic enzyme
3 campden tablets, crushed


Dissolve all of group B in 250ml warm water.

Day 1: Make 2 gallons of tea with ingredients from group A. First bring water to a rolling boil and then add the tea bags. Allow to steep for about an hour or until water has cooled to around 100 F. Remove the tea bags. Add remaining Group A and all of group B ingredients. Stir mixture until everything is dissolved. Transfer all of this mixture, including fruit pulp, into a primary fermenter and add 2 more (boiled and cooled) gallons water. Cover fermenter with plastic lid or Saran Wrap and allow to rest overnight in a dark place.

Group C:
250ml warm (not hot) tap water. Add 1 packet of Cote De Blanc wine yeast (made by Red Star) to water. Allow yeast to rehydrate for 30 minutes in just water. Then add a small pinch each of yeast nutrient and yeast energizer.

1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. sugar

Leave it alone for a few hours to start working.

Day 2: Prepare group C. Give this about 4 hours to come alive and pitch into primary fermenter. Gently stir the mixture and cover.

Days 3 to 6: Punch down must and very gently stir mixture daily.

Day 7: Strain the must into a carboy or demijohn; top up to the shoulder with 70 F water.

Beyond: Ferment to dry. Rack when necessary and add a crushed campden tablet at each racking. Make all required SG, and pH checks throughout the entire process. Leave to clear before bottling. Sparkalloid works well for clearing. Add potassium sorbate / campden tablet prior to finishing.

Not too bad on its own, but as I mentioned above, I like to use it as a blend with sweet wines.

FRANK'S QUOTE: The universe and the Vintner's psyche are exactly the same -- They're just folded differently.


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