A friend/colleague of mine has a grapevine. In North London.
They’re muscat grapes. Last weekend he and I decided to attempt to make wine from them. We got a reasonable crop from them, although if we’d have harvested a week earlier we’d have gotten a whole lot more. A local wood pigeon found them and ate around half of our crop.
The process of wine making as I understand it is pretty simple.
- Juice grapes
- Add Yeast
- Leave until you have wine
OK. It’s a little more complicated that that and involved sterilising things a making sure that the fermenting happens in an oxygen free environment (thankfully this was a bit more planned that I have implied and I’d found my late grandfathers home wine making kit in my parents garage last time I visited them so had a demijohn and an airlock).
Lovely girlfriend, colleague and I smooshed the grapes with our hands. I know it should have been feet, but wine with grapes from Angel isn’t traditional. This way we could all play at the same time. Which we then poured some yeast over and left while we drank wine (a very nice Californian Viognier called Nettie) and ate pizza.
We then strained everything through a cheese cloth and put it in the demijohn to ferment. It’s currently sat in the booze cupboard bubbling merrily away to itself. In a few weeks we will have probably a couple of bottles of wine!
It’s a lovely rich red colour at the moment, which I am slightly puzzled by. I thought that you needed to leave the juice in contact with the skins for much longer to get a red wine. I am very excited to see how it turns out, even if realistically just about drinkable is the best we can hope for. I shall report back once it’s finished.
A quick explanation of the name. Colleagues first name and my surname is Owen. Combining this with my love of Portmanteaus gives us a very heated debate about which way it is spelled.