One of the most frequently asked questions....
At our shop, country fruit wines are made in either a 11.5L or 23L batch size. This works out to either a half batch of about 15 bottles, or a whole batch of about 30 bottles. For simplicity's sake, let's talk about making a full batch of wine.
The fruit you bring in will be added to the fermenting bucket with the sugar, water and other winemaking ingredients. The more fruit you add to the batch, the more flavour, more body and aroma you will get out of the wine.
But why does the amount of fruit matter? Take a look at the diagram below and compare the fruit to water ratio. The more fruit you use, the less water is added to make up the volume of liquid required to make a batch of wine. Batch #1 is mostly fruit and probably a good amount of juice that came off your fruit while it was thawing. (Always save that juice!) It's more concentrated, and therefore, more flavour and body. Batch #2 has more water added so it will be lighter in both flavour, body, and alcohol!
Our current shop recipes work best with at the very minimum of 4 gallons, 16L or about 20-30lbs. of prepared fruit. (And by prepared, I mean cleaned, chopped and frozen as per instructions. See THIS POST for more information on fruit prep.)
Remember: 1 gallon or 4L = 1 large Ziplock freezer bag full
What if you don't have enough fruit?
Good fruit = good wine. Shitty fruit = shitty wine. See where I'm going...
All of the great winemakers are very selective when choosing their grapes for the best vintages. Grapes are selected on location, flavour, ripeness, acid and tannin levels. All of these things affects the quality of the wine. This should be the same for your Country Fruit Wines.
Of course we might not be able to test for specific sugar, acid and tannin levels in the fruit you want to use for winemaking, but does it taste good? Would you make a pie out of green peaches, or leave stems and leaves attached to the blueberries when you're making muffins? Of course not! Same should go for making wine.
I'll give a few more specific preparation notes below but here's some tips for all fruit brought in for making wine...
I have to admit, when I heard of the Passport release for February, I knew nothing about Bobal. I knew I had to do some research!
Apparently Bobal is one of the three main grapes grown in Spain - Garnacha and Montastrell being the other two. In the Manchuela area of central Spain, Bobal is the most commonly grown grape and very easily to recognize as these thick, gnarly vines are trained for decades and look like little globe shaped trees.
Manchuela is inland from Valencia and located in the valley, between two rivers, Jucar and Cabriel, whose sediments make up the limestone-based clay soils. These valleys and the influences of the Mediterranean Sea make the climate relatively mild. The moist winds coming off the coast help to regulate the temperatures in the vineyard to ensure optimal growing conditions. Two large reservoirs to the north provide irrigation during the very dry growing season. Vineyards here care 600-1000m above sea level; the altitude has a cooling effect and combines with the fresh winds to moderate the hot summer days.
Known as a "Cool Climate", Canada can grow certain grapes that produce amazing fruit forward wines. Let's showcase and support Canadian vineyards! These four kits are made from Canadian grown grapes...
RETURNING DUE TO POPULAR DEMAND
COMING MARCH 2022...
RJS Cru International Ontario Pinot Grigio Style
This is a dry wine with overtones of green melon leading to a crisp, clean finish. A bouquet of honey and herbs combined with aromas of clove, nutmeg and butterscotch from the addition of oak, completes the experience of this perennially favourite white.
This Pinot Grigio compliments the flavours of herbed butter seared scallops, feta and grilled asparagus pizza, or even a pasta al olio (olive oil, chili, garlic).
THESE 3 ARE AVAILABLE NOW...
RJS Cru International Ontario Sauvignon Blanc Style
Straw in colour with a refreshing grassy nose; bold herbal tones and fresh citrus flavours on the palate. This wine is as delightful as a cool Ontario fall day. The finish is long and fruity.
Pair this wine with a prawn and herb linguine!
RJS Cru International BC Meritage Style
This dry, medium-bodied wine opens on the nose with delicious aromas of red currant, cassis, vanilla, cigar box and spices. On the palate, it unveils a round mouth feel with polished tannins for a supported finish.
This kit came out as a limited release but was so popular RJS added into their regular line up!
RJS Cru International BC Pinot Noir Style
As one would expect from a BC style Pinot Noir, this wine features aromas of black cherries and fresh strawberries. Silky tannins while subtle notes of pepper and spice round out the palate.
Don't know what wine to pair with your meal? Pinot Noir is one of the most versatile wines!
If you'd like to try one of these amazing kits, give us a call at 250-787-2739 to reserve yours now!
Sicily is the southernmost region in Italy and the largest island on the Mediterranean Sea. It is consistently blessed with bright sunshine, warm temperatures, moderate rainfall and coastal breezes. This classis Mediterranean climate is described by Sicilian wine producers as a magical place to make wine tanks to the unique geography, climate and cultural influence.
Did you know...?
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea.
When looking at a map, you can find Sicily as "the ball being kicked by the boot".