Just like any other food or beverage, wine too has a plethora of recipes to choose from. Deciding which recipe to choose for your wine making endeavor will depend entirely on your personal preference.
If your pallet swings more towards the very dry and full-bodied wines, you should probably look for a recipe blending Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, or a Syrah grape variety.
A recently resurrected grape, which has a very nice and full-bodied taste, is the Carmenere. This grape variety makes for a very dry wine, perfect to pair with rich red meats and other fatty foods. This grape is one you will want to save for the holiday season to accompany the many traditional and heavy meals served during this time of year. If this grape variety is of interest to you, the largest choice of Carmenera producers can be found in Chile.
Red wines are not everyone's cup of tea. If this is the case for you, there are plenty of great white wine recipe's to choose from. Weather it be of a sweet or dry nature, there is a grape variety to satisfy even the most particular pallet. While the Chardonnay is probably the most well know and consumed white wine in North America, there are a great many others that are less known, yet much more interesting.
For example, from the complete opposite side of the spectrum, we have the, oh so sweet and oh so perfect for sipping on a warm summer afternoon, Gewurtzraminer. Hailing from Alsace, the currently French province most well known for being tossed between the French and German border during the 2 great wars, this wine is never acquired cheaply, but is well worth the price. Therefore, making your own will pay off exponentially.
However, wine making is not only limited to the choice between white or green grapes, everything from apples, peaches, black berries, raspberries, strawberries, honey, and even sweet potatoes can be used to make wine. So once you've made up your mind about which flavors you prefer, getting started can be as easy as picking up a wine making kit on-line or at a crafts store.
The kit will consist of a thermometer, a hydrometer to measure the static gravity, a primary fermenter and a secondary fermenter, also called a carboy. A glass carboy is recommended for a better quality product, but a five-gallon water bottle can be used. You will need yeast that is specially designed for brewing, called brewers yeast. The wrong amount of yeast could result in your fermenter exploding and you definitely wouldn't want that to happen.
If you have a starter pack, mix it together in your primary fermenter. Other wise mix approximately 5 pounds of sugar with your fruit that has been cut into small pieces or pulp. Mix this together well. Do not add the yeast at this time. Add water until you have a full five gallons, cover with a cheesecloth and set aside for about twenty-four hours. After that you will sprinkle the yeast on top. Do not mix it in. Cover with a cheesecloth once again and let sit for seven days. The fermentation process should start within twenty-four hours, after the seven days you will siphon the wine mixture into the secondary carboy. Leave as much of the sediment as possible. Fill the container up to the five-gallon mark; let this ferment for four to six weeks, until the wine clears. Siphon the wine again leaving all sediment behind.
You can use a coffee filter to strain the wine. Your wine is now ready to be bottled and corked. Always make sure your bottles as well as your wine-making equipment is thoroughly cleaned. This is very important for a quality product. Place your bottles in a cool dark place and let sit for a few weeks. In most cases the longer it sits the better the product.