Thursday, October 09, 2008

Wild Grapes

A few weeks ago we went over to Jaime and Laua D's farm to help them pick wild grapes.

The whole harvest looked to me to be about 6 bushels or so. We took home about a 1/2 a bushel.

Here are some of the grapes in our kitchen sink.

Elsie and Clara helped me juicing the grapes. We kept to two parts separate: the first pressed juice and the castings (the vines, peels, and seeds) separate.

It took a long time with our small juicer.

I'm really thankful to Elsie and Clara for their help turning the juicer.

Wild grapes are really tart!

Sorry this last pic is a bit blurry. We ended up with about 2 gallons of first press juice. I mixed another 3 gallons of sugar water to this for a good fermentation. I took the pressings (the vines, grape peels, and seeds) and boiled them for juice. This resulted in another 5 gallons to which I added sugar and yeast.

So, hopefully, we will have a nice wild grape wine for Christmas gifts.

If not, we will have a nice wine for Easter, or we will have a wild grape vinegar for cooking. Of course, I might have to throw away a rotten batch. But I hope my family and friends can have something they will enjoy.

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