Peach wine stands alone with its pinkish, sun-kissed color, along with a rich peachy taste and aroma. This is in contrast to the plumy, ruby color of red wine; light rose, petal pink of rose wine, and rich, golden, ocher, copper hue of white wine.
The fear of wines!
Peaches originated in China, and were originally known as ‘Persian apples’. Spanish explorers carried these fruits along with them to America in the 16th century. As per Chinese culture and mythology, peach blossoms and peach tree wood is used to prevent and ward off evil. Peaches were used in Chinese medicines and also symbolize longevity.
Homemade Peach Wine Recipes
♦ 3 lbs peaches
♦ 1 lb granulated sugar
♦ 1 cup orange juice
♦ ½ gallon water
♦ 1 tablespoon yeast (any wine, brewer’s yeast or baker’s yeast would work)
♦ Plastic bucket (clean and sanitized)
♦ Two 1-gallon glasses or plastic bottles (clean and sanitized)
♦ 1 plastic zipper/cheese cloth/nylon bag
♦ 1 glass or small container for yeast
♦ 1 medium-sized container
First things first. To activate the yeast, in a glass or small container, pour about ½ cup of orange juice and add the yeast to it. Leave it in direct sunlight or a warm place for a few hours. You’ll know when the orange juice is ready when it begins to look frothy.
Wash, clean, cut, and remove the stones from the peaches. Remember to remove the red part of the flesh inside the fruit. Crush the peaches to a pulp. If you use a cheesecloth, tie it and leave the bag in the bucket. If you are using a plastic bag, pour all of its contents into the bucket. Add the other half of the orange juice to this.
In the medium-sized container, dissolve sugar and ½ gallon of water. You can choose to boil the sugar water, in which case, pour the boiling water over the peaches. Let the sugar, water, and peach mixture cool. DO NOT add yeast mixture to the hot water, as it kills the yeast. Mix it well.
Once the mixture has cooled down, add the yeasty orange juice to it. Stir this a little. Cover the bucket with plastic wrap/cheesecloth or even a dish. This is to prevent bugs, flies, or dirt from getting into it. Keep it aside in a cool, dark place, away from direct sunlight for a week, for primary fermentation.
Once the wine has fermented for a week, it’s time to transfer it to secondary fermentation. Choose an attractive secondary fermentation container. Let the wine sit as before for at least three to six months, after which, you can bottle the wine.
Racking is an essential way of clearing the wine, which will aid it to ferment and clear. For racking the wine, use the tubing method, for which you will require a plastic tube. Place the secondary fermentation jug or bottle on a table, chair, or counter, and the empty bottle (that needs to be filled with wine) on the floor. The point is to keep the wine above the empty bottle. Insert the tube into the wine container, but avoid touching the sediments of the fruit. Suck at the other end of the tube to create suction. When you see that the wine has entered half way through the middle, quickly insert the tube opening into the empty bottle, and see the wine flow into the new container. Keep an eye on the ends of the tube. You would want to avoid the fruit residue from entering the second bottle. Also avoid the bottle from filling up too fast.
When it comes to aging, it’s up to you. A minimum of 6 months would be ideal.
Homemade Peach Wine
♦ 4 pints water, boiled and cooled
♦ 3 lbs very ripe peaches
♦ 3 lbs granulated sugar
♦ 1 package wine yeast (should have yeast nutrient along with it)
♦ 1½ cup orange juice (room temperature or tepid)
♦ 1 teaspoon acid blend
♦ 1 – 2 teaspoons pectic enzyme
♦ 1 Campden tablet (optional)
♦ ½ teaspoon tannin (crushed) or 1 tablespoon very strong tea
♦ 1 gallon airlock container
Mix the yeast nutrient and wine yeast with the orange juice. Keep it aside for a few hours or until it becomes frothy. Wash, clean, cut, and remove the stones from the peaches. Remember to remove the red flesh here too. Crush the peaches to a pulp.
Dissolve 1½ lbs of sugar into the boiled and cooled water. Add the acid blend, tannin or tea, and the Campden tablet (if you are using it), and mix thoroughly. Add this to the peaches, mix roughly, and let it stand for 24 hours. This mixture is known as ‘must’. Once frothy, add the orange juice and yeast mixture to the must.
Mix the pectic enzyme and keep it aside for three days. Keep it in a cool, dark, and dry place; keep it away from sunlight.
After three days, strain the wine and remove anything solid. Dissolve the remaining sugar in water. Boil and cool this sugar water. Do NOT add too much water. Once cooled, add to the now-strained wine. Add enough water to make the wine up to a gallon.
Ferment this wine mix for 10 to 12 days. Keep an eye on the bubbles. If they stop forming, the chances are that the wine is ready.
After these 10 to 12 days of secondary fermentation, the peach wine is ready for bottling, and can be set aside for another 3 months of further maturing. Rack the wine; the same way it was instructed in the 1st recipe.
Simple and Easy Homemade Peach Wine
♦ 2½ to 3 lbs of peaches (very ripe)
♦ 2 lbs of white sugar
♦ 1 lb brown sugar
♦ 1 teaspoon acid blend
♦ 1½ cup orange juice
♦ 1 package yeast
♦ 1 teaspoon yeast nutrient
♦ ¼ teaspoon pectic enzyme
♦ ¼ teaspoon grape tannin
♦ 1½ gallon water
Wash, clean, cut, and remove the stones from the peaches. Remember to remove the red flesh too. Crush the peaches to a pulp. Add enough boiling water to cover the peaches. Let it stand overnight. Mix in the pectic enzyme and let it stand for another day.
Mix the yeast nutrient and wine yeast with the orange juice. Keep it aside for a few hours or until it becomes frothy.
Stain this watery peach mixture through a sieve or muslin cloth or cheesecloth. Squeeze out the juice. Add enough water to make this mixture about 7 pints in total. Add the yeasty orange juice to the peach mixture. Add a little more water to make it up to a gallon of this yeasty peach mixture. Put this mixture in a stainless steel or enamel pot. Remember, it needs to have a lid to keep it sealed for fermentation. Leave this wine mixture in a cool, dark, dry place, to ferment for 1 to 2 weeks.
After the 2nd week, mark up the volume to 1 gallon with water. Rack the wine as referred in the 1st recipe. Bottle the wine once it is clear. The more you age the wine, the better it tastes.
Although nothing beats a good homemade peach wine, there are a range of store-bought peach wines that you can try out too. Remember, drinking comes with great responsibility. Pace, quantity, and quality play key roles while drinking. So drink responsibly. And here’s a toast to your good health.