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.

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Xmas Tutti Fruti 2015 - The Making Of ...

I think it has been several years since I started my Christmas Tutti Fruti on the traditional day, but this year I was taking fruit out of the freezer and weighing it during the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols from Kings College, Cambridge. The fruit has travelled from the freezer at Carr Manor Mount to the freezer at Bentcliffe Drive and I think Claire has resented it in both. But she now has a whole new drawer in the freezer (almost) entirely empty of fruit.

The ingredients immediately after removing from freezer
This year most of the ingredients come from one of our two gardens - only the blackberries, elderberries, figs and satsuma do not. And the figs come from my parents' garden. This pleases me. The wine is a last hurrah for our 17+ years in the Carr Manors and our first hurrah for Bentcliffe Drive.

The fruit, once it had defrosted

I have 8 lbs 8 oz fruit, and this is made up as follows:

  • Blackberries 2lb 1 oz
  • Raspberries 5 oz
  • Gooseberries (green) 2 lb 2 oz
  • Strawberries 1 lb 3 oz
  • Figs 9 oz
  • Elderberries 2 oz
  • Crab apples 8 oz
  • Quinces 12 oz
  • Rose Petals 2 oz
  • Satsuma 2 oz
  • Sloes 10 oz
  • Elderflowers - a pinch (which also did not come from either garden)
The fruit during mashing
I left it all overnight to defrost, and then until after Christmas Day lunch because there was a vast amount of spiced pumpkin soup in the tureen I needed to use. All the Taylors helped me crush the fruit and the gooseberries proved most difficult. I made my Christmas wish while mashing and stirring, and then added 5 lbs 8 oz of sugar. I added 12 pints of boiling water and left it all until Boxing Day morn, at which point I added the yeast, two teaspoons of nutrient and one of pectolase.

The fruit during fermentation
The wine took two days before there was evidence of fermentation. I put it into its two demijohns on Thursday morning, 31st December, while listening to Mozart symphonies. It took a little longer than anticipated, meaning we missed our 1 pm target of setting off to Cambridge. I now have 25 demijohns on the go and all my air-traps in use.

The wine before going into its demijohns