A deep tradition in many parts of the world such as Portugal, France and Italy, homemade wine is an unmissable wonder that everyone should have the pleasure to try for themselves.
From picking the grapes all the way through crushing, fermentation and finally bottling, home wine making is not only entertaining but also deeply rewarding and leaves you with the best prize of them all in the end – your very own batch of delicious wine to enjoy with friends and family.
If you’re interested in getting to know the world of homemade wine, you’ve come to the right place. From detailed how-to guides to recipes, kits, equipment and everything else that you need, I’ve got you covered every step of the way.
As a true passion of mine, nothing makes me happier than to introduce people to this art – now without further ado, let’s dive right in!
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Making homemade wine gets the most attention out of all subjects and with good reason – it’s extremely interesting, fun and one of the most rewarding hobbies you can have. If you dedicate enough time and patience to it, you can turn it either into an annual activity and make wine for personal consumption (as it’s done traditionally with grape wine) or you can even make it a profitable venue and start your very own brand of wines. Regardless of the objective, it’s absolutely worth getting into.
Now, home wine making is a rich activity full of detail, tips and tricks and endless paths to take – that’s the beauty of it. No matter where you are, what tools you use, what grapes you have or what method you choose, you’ll always come up with a unique, complex wine that beautifully reflects the characteristics of its region and winemaker.
This is what makes the wine YOUR wine and it’s what makes everything so fun – you can tweak every part of the process to constantly improve your homebrew wine.
Let’s take a closer look at the interesting process of making homemade wine.
Whether you want to make a mini 5 gallon batch or move on up to 65 gallons or more, everything is possible to do right at home with diy wine making. All you need to know is which equipment, tools, recipes, ingredients and methods are the best as even though you’ll always put your personal spin on the process, it allows you to enjoy the benefits of the decades of knowledge that’s been shared by previous winemakers.
Before taking a look at all of that, here are some key ideas that you should have before starting to make your home wine:
These are all great questions that you should ask yourself and figure out before starting winemaking at home. By answering these, you’ll have a solid idea of what your objective is, what equipment you need to reach it and what method is best for it.
Any home wine making process follows the same steps, although the order can change slightly.
The step that takes more time, effort and expertise is, as expected, manufacturing the wine itself. Although the general homemade wine making process itself stays the same, there are a lot of variables that go into it such as different equipment, methods, additives and techniques – all of which are part of what makes every wine different and either good or bad.
Even though this step is more complex than the others, as long as you’ve got a good source of knowledge and practice, you’ll be on your way to success, as we’ll see below.
Finding and using a tried and tested, high-quality, classic homemade wine recipe is a crucial step in the process of making your own wine. Now, there are a lot of excellent recipes for any type of wine you want to make – from the classic grape red and wine to sparkling or even fruit wines such as raspberry, blueberry and more – so before choosing the right one, you’ve gotta know which fruit and type you’re aiming for.
For a truly superb homemade wine recipe (one for red and another for white), be sure to read the full how to make homemade wine guide. Out of all I’ve tried, the ones I’ve shared on that article are easily the best.
If on the other hand you’re looking for fruit wine recipes (from all kinds of berries to unique ones like banana), simply head on over to the best homemade wine recipes list.
Choosing and getting the right equipment, supplies and ingredients is an important but often overlooked step. From simple containers and fermentors to other finer tools such as hydrometers and even additives like wine yeast, metabisulphite and tannin, everything you use must be of high-quality if you want to achieve an equally high-quality wine.
Two general tips is to always make sure that every container and tool is food-grade (especially if it’s made of plastic) and sterilized before using it. This will keep harmful substances away while also preventing bacteria from spoiling your wine.
When it comes to homemade wine making supplies, there are a lot to choose from. You can make due with just the essentials although there are optional tools to make your life easier and the process quicker (such as de-stemming machines and auto-siphons). Other considerations include the material (plastic, metal, wood), size and quantity so keep those in mind and adapt them to your goal.
I’ve written a comprehensive list that features not only all the homemade wine making supplies you need (from equipment and tools to homemade wine ingredients and additives) but also personal recommendations of the best ones you can get (best brands/products/sources).
Now that you know which type of wine you want to make and have both the recipe and the supplies needed for it, all you need to know is how to make it. To ensure that you ace it, nothing beats in-depth step by step homemade wine instructions.
I’ve written two articles that offer you exactly that, one for the most popular type of grape wine – red and white – and another one for all kinds of fruit wine (one process that works with any fruit). They’re both very detailed and will guide you thoroughly from start to finish, ensuring that you end up with a successful and delicious result.
For the homemade grape wine instructions, check out this article.
On the other hand, for homemade fruit wine instructions read this article instead.
As we’ve seen above, home made wines come in a wide variety of types which dramatically changes their color, flavor, aromas and alcoholic content. Although the more popular ones are by far the classic red and white grape wines, there are a lot more home made wines to explore. Let’s take a look:
Homemade grape wine is the most traditional and widely enjoyed choice, although surprisingly it’s also the one that gets erroneously made more often. Over the years people have started to take short-cuts, skipping crucial steps, using bad equipment and making a whole lot of errors during fermentation, bottling and even storing. Sadly, these sub-par techniques have become common on the web and it’s getting harder and harder to find a source for real, classic and expertly written knowledge that focuses on making the best wine possible – that’s one of the reasons why I decided to create this website in the first place.
Homemade grape wine, if properly made, is one of the very best in the world and can become unbeatable in quality if you dedicate enough time to it. To ensure that you start on the right foot when it comes to making wine from grapes at home, be sure to read the article I’ve already written on it.
Homemade fruit wine is a joy to make and super entertaining due to the exotic and deeply unique results that you get. From wild colors to striking flavors and beautifully fresh aromas, fruit wines – even though not as popular or widely consumed as grape wine – can still be delicious and a whole lot of fun to make.
The most popularly used fruits for homemade fruit wine are: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, blackcurrants, bananas, apples and many others. All of them produce distinct, colorful and very interesting wines.
While the recipes are many, as you can make homemade fruit wine from nearly every fruit on the planet, the overall process stays exactly the same. It’s simple, straightforward and produces fantastic results. If you want to learn the process, make sure to read the guide on how to make homemade wine from fruit.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here I’ll answer the most frequently asked questions on this subject from both the web and the ones that you send me. I’ll keep this updated as more questions get sent.
Can you make wine at home?
An excellent question. A lot of people wonder if you can make your own wine at home not in capability terms but in legal ones (which is the context of this question). The answer is that while in general, yes it is, it varies from state to state if you’re in the US and it varies from country to country in Europe and everywhere else in the world.
Some countries require a license while others only allow you to do it until a certain amount is reached. The best way to solve this question is to either ask your local authorities, a local expert or to perform a search online for your local laws.
What is homebrew wine?
I get this one a lot – it’s simply homemade wine in other words. It’s more commonly used by beer enthusiasts since they’re used to the concept of brewing and home brews which transfers to their vocabulary when talking about home wine making and similar activities.
As classic as it gets and superbly rewarding, homemade wine is an age-old tradition that anyone can enjoy. Although store-bought wines are great, nothing beats the pleasure and feeling of accomplishment that you get by making your very own wine and sharing it with your friends and family – in the end, that’s why we do it in the first place!
Thanks as always for reading and I’ll see you on the next one. Until then, cheers!