Saturday, 23 July 2016
Rose Petal Wine 2016 - The Making Of... (Blog Post 1,000)
When moving house we had to leave our favourite rose behind. It was a white rose, climbing around the car port and prolific in its blooms. That it was a wedding present made abandoning it more poignant. We did, however, take a red rose with us that had been at 14 Carr Manor Mount when we arrived there in 1998 and which had only put out the occasional flower. This rose is far happier where we are now and I have been out with scissors and a plastic bag every time its petals start to droop.
I was in York on Sunday, 17th July, and collected the last of the saved roses from the freezer. Back home in Leeds, after making bread, having an afternoon nap and tackling the washing up mountain, I measured the rose-petals. I stopped measuring at 12 pints - enough for a triple batch. The remainder are saved for Christmas Tutti Fruti. I poured the petals into my bucket - and at this stage this is the prettiest of wines.
Having failed to find any white grape juice this year, I put in 1-and-a-half lbs of minced sultanas and the juice of three oranges (which is very nearly an opera by Prokofiev). I added 7 lbs 12 oz of sugar (the same as last year - which has produced a wonderful wine). I covered this with 23 pints of boiling water, making the entire house smell of roses.
Next morning, Monday 18th July, I added the yeast, a teaspoon of pectolase and two teaspoons each of nutrient and tannin. I stirred this twice daily until Friday, 22nd July, when I put the wine into its three demijohns. As ever, I used a collander to scoop out most the rose petals, though after the first two collander loads, the 'jug and sieve' method was better. It was a quick job, probably taking about half an hour, and the wine is now bubbling away in all its dark orangy-pinkness.
Forgive me for a bit of self-indulgence, but this blog is now 1,000 posts old. The very first post is about making dandelion wine, and can be found here. That was back on 21 April 2011. Since then, I have done a 'wine making' post 94 times, and either made or drunk 50 flavours. My most popular post is 'Blackberry Wine 2013 - the Making Of' and the most frequently drunk bottle is a tie between 'Crab Apple' and 'Blackberry' (99 entries each, of which some will be about making the stuff). Thank you for stopping by - and Bottoms Up!