Last summer, we happened upon an AMAZING deal on fresh blueberries at the Minneapolis Farmers Market. As we looked at the cases upon cases of blueberries that were available at that ridiculous price, Porter and I had the exact same thought: We should buy a TON of these, and make wine!
We had made a batch of blueberry wine from frozen blueberries a few years ago, and that was amazing – fresh could only be better, right?
We made something like 10 gallons of this, but I’ve pared our recipe to be done “by the gallon”, so you can adjust for how many blueberries you have to work with.
No fresh blueberries? No problem, just substitute an equal weight of frozen blueberries! I would put them through a food processor, rather than squish them by hand – freezing and thawing berries breaks them down well.
As is, this batch ran pretty dry at the end, so we sweetened it up with a bit of sugar at the end. We like our wine pretty sweet, though.
If you haven’t attempted making wine before, don’t be intimidated! Check out our primer to home brewing, it starts here, with parts 2 and 3 here and here. Just a small handful of entries, and you’ll be good to go!
Fresh Blueberry Wine Recipe
Ingredients, per gallon of water
Rinse and pick through blueberries, removing any that are moldy, etc. Place in a large pot, along with the sugar. Using a potato masher or VERY clean hands, stir and mash blueberries.
Add water, stir well. Heat to ALMOST boiling, then simmer gently for 30 minutes. Stir in acid blend, enzyme, nutrient, and tannin.
Pour mixture into a freshly sanitized fermenting bucket. Cover with sanitized lid and air lock, allow to cool to room temperature (overnight).
The next morning, give the mixture a quick stir with a long, sanitized spoon, and – using sanitized equipment – take a gravity reading of the liquid (strain out any blueberries). Keep track of the number! (This is an optional step, but will allow you to calculate your final ABV %)
Sprinkle yeast into fermenter, cover with sanitized cover and air lock. Within 48 hours, you should notice fermentation activity – bubbles in the airlock, carbonation and /or swirling in the wine must. This means you’re good to go!
After a week or so, use your sanitized siphon setup to rack the must into a freshly sanitized carboy. Put the carboy somewhere cool (not cold!), and leave it alone for a month or so.
Using sanitized equipment, rack the blueberry wine off the sediment, into a clean, freshly sanitized carboy. Cap with sanitized airlock, leave it alone for another 2-3 months.
Rack one more time, leave it for another 3 months or so.
When your wine has been racked a few times and shows NO more fermenting activity for a month or so (no bubbles in the airlock, no more sediment being produced, you can move on to bottling.
Follow the instructions on your selected type of wine stabilizer to stop fermentation. For potassium sorbate, this needs to be done 2-3 days before bottling.
Using sanitized equipment, take a gravity reading, then rack the wine into clean, sanitized bottles. Cork. (We like to use these for corking our homemade wine. Easy to use – no special equipment needed! – easy to uncork, and – should you have any wine left in your bottle after serving (pfft!), the “cork” is easily replaced for temporary storage!).
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