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.

Saturday, 23 March 2019

Orange Wine 2019 - The Making Of...

Now that I have had a month to think about it, I have decided that Claire is right. Claire would argue that a month to consider whether she is correct is ridiculous and exactly a month too long. But she is right - I have been making too much wine and I should scale back production this year. So for the first time in probably fifteen years, I am making a single batch of orange wine. It will become apparent in 2021 whether this is a good idea.

I started the wine on Saturday 2nd March. Recently I have installed a step-counter app on my phone and because this is new and shiny I am walking everywhere. I walked to Chapel Allerton to buy the week's groceries and saw that the Fruit Stall was selling oranges at three for a pound. This is far more expensive than I have bought oranges in the past and I did have an internal debate about whether I should drive to Sainsbury's where they would be five for a pound. But then I reasoned that I was not poverty stricken and could probably afford the extra £1.80 for the ingredients. The oranges added significantly to the weight I carried home, and I had to stop and rest three times on the journey.

Back at home I thinly peeled six of the 12 oranges, getting less successful at avoiding the pith as I went on. I put the peel in a bowl, poured a pint of boiling water over it and covered that with clingfilm.

Half of the oranges thinly peeled
Next I squeezed all oranges and measured the juice - two and a half pints. These oranges are far larger and juicier than last year's, where I made a double batch with only slightly more juice. It will be interesting to see what this does to the flavour.

I poured the juice into my bucket and made up the liquid to 6½ pints by putting in 4 pints of cold water. Next I added 2 lbs 12 oz sugar, stirred it all to dissolve this and put in a teaspoon of yeast, nutrient and pectolase. Next day I added the water that had been covering the peel and put the peel itself into our compost bucket.

I transferred the liquid into its demijohn on Wednesday evening, 6th March. It was a quick process as there was little to sieve out. I could have used maybe a quarter pint more liquid. The wine is a vibrant orange colour and I look forward to its taste.

If you want to see how this tasted, click here.

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