Monday, January 3, 2011



This is a little something we have done on the counter in our spare time. We are not really drinkers, but we enjoy playing with winemaking. (Which explains why we only made less than three bottles.)

The apple wine is made from juice from our very own apples. I admit, I have no sense of the fine points (or even the dull points) of wine, but right now, the apple wine tastes….yucky. Sour…strong…angry? But when we made strawberry mead several years ago, we didn’t like it too much either. Now, that mead is mellow and wonderful…so age does matter! The apple wine will age a few years in our cool, dry basement. Who knows - it may be perfect just in time for Little Bit’s 21st birthday.

The peach schnapps doesn’t really get made at home, just flavored. You start with vodka, add peaches (again, ours were home-grown) and leave the two together for at least a month. We let it sit in a cool dark spot in the basement for about four months. Then you strain and filter the liquid. I very much dislike vodka, but this schnapps? Pretty good. We had a little bit that didn’t fit into our fancy (star bucks) bottle, so that’s what we were tasting. I added one single drop of almond extract to the tasting glass, and liked that really well too. It gave an added sweetness and made the peach flavor even more prominent. Next year I think I want to try making some with sweet cherries if our trees produce well.

One of Hubby’s Christmas presents was supplies to make a little beer. Well, for us, a LOT of beer. The smallest increment our homebrew store sells is enough ingredients to make 5 gallons. We don’t have a glass carboy (a big 5 gallon glass jug used for fermentation). We use glass 1 gallon (and even some half gallon) cider jugs, so we’ll likely divide the malt, hops, etc. to make five separate batches over time. I’ll make sure to keep you posted on our progress with that. I got him the ingredients for a Newcastle Ale clone, and we’re hoping it will be as good as the real thing. (We are also hoping it doesn’t explode in the bottles!)

Have you ever made your own spirits? What did you make, and what did you most enjoy about it? Leave a comment!


Kellie said...

I don't make my own, have a professor who does and he brought in a bottle to taste for one of my classes.... definitely an acquired taste is needed. I like the idea of making peach schnapps, I use that in my pumpkin pie recipe.

Anonymous said...

My brother makes/brews his own beer. Has the whole rig including re-sealable bottles. Actually, the bottles are reused, the tops are a one time deal. I didn't care for the beer, but he also made ginger ale and root beer, and both were very yummy. Much more of a fresh taste to them. I may try the vodka infusion, as I don't care for straight vodka and have more than we will ever use.

Prairie Farmstead Ponderings said...

No, the wildest thing I've done lately is start our own batch of homemade pure vanilla extract. Heehee

Ten Things Farm said...

Kellie, I have to wonder if it just was not ready...then again, I've had 'good wine' that I thought tasted like bad who am I to judge?

Anonymous, I have a bottle capper (and bottle caps too), and we have simply saved some beer bottles. I would love to try sodas too, especially ginger ale.

The infusion (the peaches in the vodka) really is better than I was hoping for...and as J mentioned in the post just above this, you can also use vodka for extracts, like vanilla, peppermint - I'm sure there are others too! :)


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