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Archive for the ‘Wine Making’ Category

Normandy, Part 1: How They Do Things

09.27.11

I’m back. Not surprisingly, Normandy was quite the beautiful adventure. I was there to educate my palate, learn some methodology in cider and calvados production, and most importantly to glean from their centuries-old apple food culture. I live in a place of copious amounts of largely wasted urban apples, with a brand-newly emerging scene surrounding how to save them and what to do with them. Thankfully the Normands already have much of this figured out.

I stayed right on the cider route in the

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Frontenac Vintage Update

09.14.11

My relationship with wine grapes is a complex one. I did piles of research a few years ago to be well prepped for the potential day in the future that I would have wine grapes in my very own back yard. I since have become a believer in the apple culture we live in here, and am heading to Normandy in two days to glean from their hundreds of years of apple food culture they’ve got on us. I’m going to be hanging out with cider

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Rack-Fest

10.28.10

Okay. So I underestimated the work involved in making this volume of wine. Yesterday things needed racking, and wow did it add up to a lot of work – I started around 1, took a break to feed the family and bathe the kids, then back to racking, finishing at about 8pm. I learned, through the tedium of this task, that I quite don’t like siphoning, but do get a perverse satisfaction cleaning carboys of their gross less. I also learned that there are few efficiencies

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2010 Apple Wine Vintage Shows its Face

10.26.10

Oh, happiness. I’ve been keeping a loose eye on the bubbling of my apple wine carboys [a not-so-modest 9 carboys, or ~20 cases. I'm sharing with folks, honest], but hadn’t noticed them dropping clear until today. What does that mean? The yeast is done doing its thing – and no longer is creating turbulence in the solution. What does that really mean? It’s drinkable. I’m overjoyed. I ran out of last year’s far too quickly.

A few notes about this vintage. I kept all batches

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Making Apple Wine

09.01.10

I’d promised a video peek at how I’ve been making lovely apple wine from urban yard waste. Fortunately, Kristeva and Jessica volunteered to give me a hand, and they quickly jumped in and took over, allowing me to shoot a good portion of the process. If you have any questions about the details, ask in the comments.  [And pardon the profanity, but I just couldn't resist using this song. ]

Apple Wine 2010 – Round One

08.30.10

So what could one possibly do with 300-400lbs of apples from your yard – or perhaps your neighbor’s yard?! How much apple sauce or apple pie does one need? I propose the following solution: wine. My current estimate is that it takes about an hour to convert 100 lbs of apples into a carboy of juice – or about 2 cases of finished wine. So Saturday: 4 hrs of crush and press, roughly 4 finished carboys of wine, which will end up yielding about 10

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Apple Harvest 2010: Round One

08.25.10

Good things come to those who ask. This spring, I was picking up some kijiji-found-cinder-blocks, and the folks who had the blocks happened to have inherited a city lot with an INSANE amount of fruit trees on it. So I asked. And today I received. A few hundred pounds of apples, which dented about 3/4 of one of their trees – and they have 6+ in their backyard. And they have raspberries, nanking cherries, saskatoons, evans cherries, and other fruits in significant quantity. Operation Fruit

A Wild Food & Wild Wine Pairing ‘Moment’

05.21.10

I just had an unexpected notable ‘moment’. I have long contemplated the concept of ‘what grows together goes together‘ when it comes to the game meats we hunt. It’s a reasonably undisputed culinary rule.  So thinking of moose and elk, it has begged the question of pairing it with saskatoons, high bush cranberry, labrador tea, and other similar items you’d find in the bush where the animals live. I’ve given the concept the odd shot, with varied and moderate success. But tonight.

I figured I should get around to

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Oak Tasting

01.10.10
I’m waiting for some wine samples of batch 2 to come up to room temp from cellar temp to do a tasting/assessment as they are all under different oak treatments at the moment. The two far ones have different toasts of oak going on. The last one has both toasts, but in twice the volume of wine. I’m trying to figure
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Oh yeah, I built my wine cellar

01.08.10
I’ve posted a few times about my intentions to build a wine cellar. Well barring some additional shelving that will be built this spring, it’s done. And thank the lord for that. Because I’m crazy and decided to try to grow grapes up here, I figured it would be prudent to learn to make both white and red wines this year from other fruits to get my act together
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