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Visitor-Submitted Recipes

Visitors to The Winemaking Home Page occasionally submit recipes to me for informational or considerational reasons. I am very grateful to them for doing so. In the past, I have published these submissions only when I received a request for a recipe and the visitor-submitted recipe helped satisfy that request. I have decided to publish these submissions, at my discretion, without waiting for a specific request. Jack Keller

Do you have a wine recipe you'd like to share? Please send it to me by email. I may or may not publish it, but I will certainly catalog it for future reference.

Elderberry Wine

"This is a totally awesome Elderberry wine."Gary Weaver

Freeze the elderberries. Rub the frozen berries between your hands to roll the berries off of the stems. Thaw the elderberries in a nylon juice bag allow the juice to drain. Squeeze the juice from the bag be careful not too squeeze too hard.

Freeze the fresh picked plums. Thaw the plums let the juice drain on its own. Squeeze the plums to remove the juice. Do not break the pits.

Boil 1 gallon of water. Add about 1/2 gallon of persimmons. Boil for about 30 minutes. Mash the persimmons with a potato masher and boil another 15 minutes. Pour the mixture through a strainer to remove all the solid material. Boil the juice to remove the water. Boil the juice down to about 2 cups of liquid.

In another container sprinkle and dissolve the bentonite into 1/2 gallon of very warm water. Add the crushed campden tablets. Add the elderberry juice. Add the oak chips, plum juice, persimmon juice, water, acid blend, yeast nutrient. Add enough sugar so the specific gravity is 1.095 this will give you about 13% alcohol. 2 cups of the sugar should be dark brown sugar the rest of the sugar is all white sugar.

Place the nylon bag of elderberries in the primary fermentor with the liquid.

Allow the mixture to set for 24 hours then sprinkle the yeast on top. Ferment at 70 degrees F in an 8 gallon fermenter for about 5 days or until the specific gravity = SG is 1.010.

Remove the nylon bag of elderberries. Allow the juice to drain on its own for about 1 hour. Do not squeeze the bag.

Syphon the liquid to the secondary fermenter leaving most of the sediment behind.

Ferment for 10 days with the airlock. Fermentation will stop after about 10 days.

Stir in 1 teaspoon of potassium metabisulfite and 1 teaspoon of Potassium Sorbate.

Stir for about 15 minutes to remove all of the CO2. When the wine stops foaming the CO2 is gone. SG should be about 0.990.

Stir in the Black Currants and allow the wine to set for 1 week. Stir the wine every day.

After 1 week remove the Black Currants. Keep the sediment and stir back into the wine.

Stir the sediment back into the wine ever day for 7 days. After 7 days stir in 1 package of Chitosan (about 1/2 cup). Top off the 6 gallon fermenter with good water.

Let the wine clear for 2 weeks. After 2 weeks if the wine is not clear let it clear for another week. Do not bottle cloudy wine. Clearing can be speeded up by keeping wine in a cool place at about 40 degrees. The wine should be ready to bottle after about 6 weeks from the time it was started.

Syphon wine to a clean secondary. The wine will be extra-dry, SG will be about 0.990. Back sweeten the wine to taste with White sugar. SG 1.000 for semi-dry wine. SG 1.010 for sweet wine.

Bottle the wine. This wine is good young but it is totally unreal how much better it gets with age. I know some people will drink their wine young. Stash away about 5 bottle of wine for at least 1 or 2 years. You will be sorry if you drink all your wine before it has time to age.

Holy Basil Wine

"The following recipe made an excellent wine. Thank you for asking for the recipe. That made me feel real good." Patricia Imler

Editor's Note: Holy Basil (Ocimum sanctum = Ocimum tenuiflorum) is also known as Sacred Basil, Tulsi, and Tulasi. It can be obtained from nurseries offering a full line of herbs, and as dried leaves from many health food stores selling bulk herbs.

Bring 2 qt water to a boil. Remove from heat, add herbs and stir. Cover and allow to steep 2 hours. Strain into a 4 liter wine jug. Meanwhile, in 1 qt hot water dissolve the 2 lbs sugar and let cool. Add the dissolved sugar to the Holy basil liqueur and add remaining ingredients except the yeast. If you haven't done so already, check your S.G. Wait 24 hours. Add proofed yeast (yeast starter solution). In 3-5 days, check your S.G. When it drops to 1.040 rack to secondary (another clean 4L wine jug). When ferment is complete (S.G. 1.000 or less) rack again. May rack each two months (adding 1/2 to 1 crushed campden tab) until clear and bottle. At bottling, add 1/2 teaspoon stabilizer, 1 crushed campden tab, 1/4 lb dissolved sugar.

I started my wine on 10-18-05, fined with Sparkolloid following directions on package on 12-3-05 and bottled on 12-7-05. Waited until April 2006 to taste and is quite good.

Banana Wine

"I have an excellent recipe for banana wine that I had the pleasure of trying tonight. It was adapted from from the 1970 book The Art of Making Wine by myself with a simple adjustment of acid and fruit, as the original was a bit bland. I have made several variations and this seems to be the best overall, in my opinion...." Jason Killingsworth

Put banana chips into a straining bag and mix all ingredients except yeast into primary. When must is room temperature sprinkle yeast gently over the must. After a "cap" forms, stir must daily for 5-7 days. If possible, strain must into secondary and wait 3 weeks, Siphon, top up and fit airlock and repeat and in another 3 months siphon into another secondary or bottling bucket (by james key). The FG should be 0.995 or lower and no stabilizer required. Bottle and age at least 10 months. Aged, this is a wonderful table wine that will go well with any non-spicy chicken, fish or even bar-b-q.

Vino Colima
(COconut, LItchi, MAngo)

Another winner from Bob Arndt, who writes, "What can I say? They're all good!

"This recipe is dedicated to my wife Susana, who I met and married in Colima, Mexico 21 years ago. Tried, tested and true, my true love, my best friend, my support in everything I do. Thank-you for sharing my life. °Gracias mi vida, te quiero mucho!

"Oh yes, the wine is wonderful too."

Peel and slice the mango, discard the large seed, and push the flesh through a juicer, add to primary. Drain Lychee syrup into primary and push the flesh through the juicer, and add that to primary. Add all other ingredients except pectic enzyme and yeast. Check s.g. Draw one quart of juice from primary, add sugar and bring to 110 degrees stiring constantly until sugar is completely disolved. Return that to primary. Cover with muslin cloth. After 12 hours add pectic enzyme. After 12 more hours add yeast. Ferment until s.g. drops to 1.010. Rack into secondary, top up and fit airlock. Rack again in 30 days and again every 2 months for 6 months. Stabilize, sweeten if desired, wait 10 days, and rack into bottles. Age 1 year before drinking. Serve cold.[Recipe by Bob Arndt, Ontario, California]


Set Welch's frozen concentrate out to thaw about two hours before starting. Two hours later, bring water to a boil. Meanwhile, drain the apricots but save the liquid they were canned in. Chop fruit and put in nylon straining bag with dried mushrooms. Tie bag and put in primary. When water boils, remove from heat and add grape concentrate and liquid from canned fruit. Stir in 1 lb. sugar and stir until dissolved. Measure S.G. and continue adding sugar (1/4 cup at a time, then stir to dissolve) until S.G. reaches 1.090-1.095. When S.G. is right, pour sweetened water over fruit and mushrooms. Add acid blend, tannin, yeast nutrient, and crushed Campden tablet and stir. Cover with cloth, wait 12 hours, then add pectic enzyme. Recover, wait additional 12 hours, then add activated yeast starter. When fermentation is very active (12-18 hours later), stir and push bag of fruit under. Don't worry if it floats back up. Ferment 5 days, stirring daily and pushing bag under liquid several times. Drip drain (don't squeeze) the bag and return drained juices to primary. Discard fruit. Allow liquid to settle, then siphon off sediments into sterile secondary and fit air lock. Rack after two months and again after additional two months, topping up each time. Wait final two months, add stabilizer, wait additional 14-21 days, and rack again. Sweeten to taste with up to 1/4 cup sugar dissolved in 1/8 cup water and bottle the wine. Allow 6 months aging before tasting. If the wine tastes less than expected, allow to age another 6 months. [Recipe by Tom Asp with adjustments by Jack Keller]

Vino Orpico


Bob Arndt is a relatively new winemaker and has written to me many times trying to understand the nuances of his new hobby. He created this wine....

Mix juices. Check specific gravity, then mix 1 quart of juice with sugar, bring to 110 degrees, mixing until sugar is completely dissolved. Add sugar mixture to juice and lower temperature to 75 degrees with sandwich bag filled with ice cubes. Add crushed and dissolved Campden, acid blend and grape tannin. After 12 hours add pectic enzyme. After 12 more hours, add yeast nutrient and yeast. Ferment in primary to 1.010-1.025. Rack to secondary, top up and fit with airlock. Ferment as long as you can wait (usually 30 days for me). [Recipe by Bob Arndt, Ontario, California]


Makes 34 litres (9 US gallons) wine

"This is how I am making my carob wine this year. In my opinion it is an excellent wine. Last year I used the same recipe but with no tannin. I am not sure if carob wine needs tannin added, but i think it is worth trying. I am also going to make one gallon and add black sultanas to improve colour and body." Joe French, Malta

Day 1: Destem the pods. Wash well from any dust. Soak in water for 3 days, changing the water daily.

Day 4: Cut half the pods in small pieces (in 3 or 4). Liquidize lightly the rest (in blender or food processor). Add all ingredients except the yeast and 2 kilos (4 lb 7 oz) sugar.

Day 5: Add yeast. Remember to make a starter using 1/2 litre water and 2 tsp sugar. Remember to control the temperature of the water (app 37 deg C or 98.6 deg F). After about 30 mins the yeast will start activating. Stir the must. Now pour the yeast gently on top of the must without stirring again. Stir the must after about 4 hours. Take specific gravity reading with your hydrometer. It should read about 1.070. If it is less, add sugar to adjust. If it is more just record your reading.

Day 6: Stir the must 3 times a day.

Day 7: Stir the must 3 times a day. Add enough sugar (approx. 2 kg or 4 lb 7 oz) to increase the specific gravity reading by 0.020 to have a total reading of 1.090 which will produce wine with a total alcohol of 12%.

Day 8: Stir the must 3 times a day.

Day 9: Stir the must 3 times a day.

Day 10: Stir the must 3 times a day. Check the specific gravity with your hydrometer. By now it should be below 1.040. Filter all the must through a sieve into a 34 litre demijohn or one 6-gal US and one 3-gal US carboy.

Day 11 or 12: Fix airlock. Then follow the normal procedure for all winemaking. [Recipe by Joseph French, Malta]


"Lilly Pilly (Acmena smithii) from the rain forest in Eastern Australia. A tree of various height and grown for its ornamental properties, produces fruit in clusters. The fruit is purple white about 16 mm dia free stone and very dry (not a lot of juice). Not very nice to eat raw, but makes extremely nice jam and local winemakers think highly of it. Each fruit has an air cavity in which the small round seed hangs on a short stem. To remove, it requires breaking the fruit with one's fingers. This becomes a very tedious long job when one has three 2gallon buckets of fruit. One good feature, when placed in water the bad fruit having lost its airsack drops out." Dennis Greeve, Western Australia

Prepare fruit as in introduction. Bring water to boil. Pour sugar over fruit pulp in 3-gallon primary and add boiling water. Stir to dissolve sugar, cover primary, and wait until cooled to room temperature. Add tannin, pectic enzyme and yeast nutrient, then stir well. Recover primary and wait 12 hours. Add activated yeast. Stir twice daily for 5 days. Strain off pulp and discard, leaving about 10 liters of liquid. Can use 2?US gallon carboy or two 1-gallon (Imperial) jugs for secondary. If using US 2?gallon carboy, top up with water. If using Imperial gallon jugs, extra liter of juice can be fermented in 1-liter bottle using #2 bung to hold airlock. Seal secondary or secondaries with airlock and rack after wine clears. Use 1-liter bottle to top up with if using Imperial-gallon jugs. Refit airlock(s) and rack again after additional 2 months. Stabilize, wait 2 weeks and rack into bottles. [Recipe by Dennis Greeve, Western Australia]


"This recipe was obtained from a book at a friend's house several years ago. I start a gallon of this each month so I never run out. It's that good." Freddy Friemeister, St. Louis, MO

Put 1 quart water on to boil. Meanwhile, dump grapefruit sections and syrup in primary and crush with hands. Add sugar to boiling water and stir well until it is dissolved. Pour boiling water in primary. Cover and allow to cool to room temperature. Add all ingredients except yeast. Stir and cover. Add yeast the next day. Recover primary and stir daily for 5-7 days. Strain through nylon straining bag and squeeze well. Transfer liquid to a secondary and cap with an airlock. Rack after 30 days and again when wine clears. Stabilize and allow another 30 days. Bottle and enjoy immediately. [Recipe from a book, submitted by Freddy Friemeister, St. Louis, MO]


"Here is a crab apple wine from juice. The finished wine is very good and has a lovely pink color. The recipe makes 3 gallons." Del Landry, Canada

Mix all ingredients together in a food-grade bucket except pectic enzyne and yeast. Stir well until all sugar and additives are dissolved. Cover bucket with clean cloth and set aside 10-12 hours. Stir in pectic enzyme until dissolved. Recover bucket and set aside another 10-12 hours. Pitch yeast and recover. Stir daily until violent fermentation subsides. Transfer to carboy and fit airlock. Rack every 30 days for three months. Wine should be clear. Age another 30 days and rack into bottles. [Recipe by Del Landry, from Canada]


"I attempt to make some wines resembling commercial wines and the following is a reasonable attempt at Sauvignon Blanc using gooseberries and other juices. The measures are metric and British. This makes 1 gallon and can be made in just a few weeks ." Bruce Fairlie, United Kingdom

Combine all ingredients except yeast. Stir well and cover. Let sit overnight. Add yeast and allow fermentation to peak and taper off. Rack into a secondary and top with airlock. When fermentation ceases altogether, rack, stabilize and bottle. [Recipe by Bruce Fairlie of the UK]


"Here is a simple recipe for 30 day wine. Many old hillbillies here in Tennessee still use this one, and wouldn't have it any other way. They don't want any Cabernet, Merlot or Champagne; this is Tennessee, not France. Back during my teens I used to make this, but now grow my own grapes and pick fruits in the wild." SouthernWine

Mix all ingredients together well with water filling jug to about an inch below the shoulders. Cover with a clean rag secured with rubber band. Keep in a dark place about 70 degrees. About 2 weeks later replace rag with a good thick piece of plastic wrap. After 30 days from starting date, siphon wine off from sediment in bottom and drink. For a good old "Mad Dog 20/20" type wine, add a pint of cheap blackberry brandy to the mix before drinking. [Recipe by SouthernWine, from rec.crafts.winemaking newsgroup]


"Jack, many years ago I made a wine from a gallon of pure, freshly pressed elderberry juice. I did not weigh the unpressed elderberries, so don't know how many it took to yield a gallon of juice. I knew this wine would probably be astringent, but I believed it would in time achieve a balance that would make it enjoyable. I bottled the wine in 375-ml bottles and put it away for four years. I opened a bottle and did not enjoy it, so I ignored the remaining bottles until recently when the seventh year of aging concluded. At this point, the wine is probably the best homemade wine I have ever tasted. The recipe I used is below:" Ben Lebeaux, Lake City, Florida

Dissolve crushed Campden tablet in elderberry juice. Cover with cloth and set aside overnight. Dissolve pectic enzyme in elderberry juice and set aside another 12 hours. Float hydrometer in juice and determine sugar required to raise specific gravity to 1.085. Add that amount of sugar (1?pounds) and stir until sugar is completely dissolved. Stir in yeast nutrient and activated yeast and cover the primary. Stir daily for five days. Transfer to a secondary and fit an airlock. Excess juice can be stored in a clean soda bottle in the refrigerator with a balloon covering the mouth. After 30 days, rack, top up with the excess juice in the soda bottle and replace the airlock. Repeat this every 30 days until the wine clears. Stabilize and set aside three months. If new sediments have formed, rack and set aside another three months. If no new sediments form, rack into half-bottles (375-ml). Age seven years or longer if required. [Recipe by Ben Lebeaux, Lake City, Florida]


"I noticed you did not have a recipe posted for rutabagas wine. I like this wine. It tastes kind of peppery and has a beautiful color." Linda Franklin, Ottawa, Illinois

Remove tops and roots and scrub rutabagas well. Cut into 1-inch cubes and put in pot with peppercorns and water. Simmer (do not boil) for 45 minutes. Remove zest of oranges and lemons. Put zest in jelly bag, tie closed and put in primary. Strain rutabagas and peppercorns and add water to primary. Discard or serve rutabagas. Stir in sugar, yeast nutrient and tannin until sugar is completely dissolved. Pour over zest, stir in juice from oranges and lemons, cover the primary, and set aside to cool. Add crushed Campden and recover. After 12 hours add pectic enzyme and recover the primary. After 12 hours add the yeast. Stir daily. After ten days, remove jelly bag and discard zest. Let wine settle over night and rack into secondary. Top up and fit airlock. Rack every two months for six months. If fermentation is complete and wine is clear, rack into bottles. If not ready, continue racking every two months until ready to bottle. Store six months before drinking. [Recipe by Linda Franklin, Ottawa, Illinois]

This page was updated on June 24th, 2006

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