Greetings

This blog is a record of the wine that I make and drink. Each flavour made and each bottle drunk will appear here. You may come to the conclusion that, on the whole, I should be drinking less.

Monday, 26 December 2011

Christmas Tutti Fruti - The Making Of ...

As last year, we are away at Christmas, so I started this wine on 18th December. In place of the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, Claire stuck on a CD of Christmas Carols from around the world. Unsurprisingly, the majority were European.

As is tradition, I cleared the freezer of its fruit, leaving 8 oz sloes for gin next year and handful of blackberries for crumble. We may now be able to have the luxury of icecubes.

This year there is a greater variety of fruit than previous years, though - alas - no elderberries. I have 1 lb 13½ oz blackberries, 1 lb 10½ oz sloes, 1 lb 2 oz green gooseberries, 12 oz rhubarb, 10 oz grapes from my mother's garden, 9¾ oz blackcurrants, 9¼ oz strawberries, 8 oz red gooseberries, 2 oz cranberries, 1½ oz crab apples and one satsuma. To my calculations, that equals 7 lbs 14½ oz fruit plus one satsuma, which is about right for a double batch. It is currently sitting in its bucket defrosting and I shall mash it all up and add the sugar and water tomorrow.
The fruit before mashing
It is now 'tomorrow', Monday, and the day has not gone as planned. In the night a minor sore throat deteriorated into fever and shivering, and I have spent much of the day in bed. At least today was not a working day. As Brooke North closes at the end of this week I cannot afford to be ill. There is too much to do before our computers get taken on Thursday. What I have managed to do today, though, has been to mash the fruit (making my Christmas wish whilst doing so), add 6 lbs of sugar and pour over 12 pints of boiling water. When the first six pints went in there was a wonderful smell of summer and autumn fruits.

The yeast and one teaspoon each of nutrient and pectolase went in on Tuesday morning. I then waited until Saturday, Christmas Eve, before putting the wine into its demijohns. I timed this so it coincided with the Nine Lessons and Carols from Kings College Cambridge. This has not succeeded in putting me into good Christmas cheer. I am too snotty for that, and I spent most the time feeling desperately hungry - which was remedied afterwards by a cheese sandwich. I could have done with a pint more water in the recipe, as this would have allowed me to discared rather more sludge than I have done.
Two (underexposed) demijohns of Tutti Fruti