Blackberry Wines, Sherries, and/or Meads

There are at least 122 species of blackberries in the United States alone — one authority claims 200 for North America. All are of the genus rubus, which also includes Boysenberries, dewberries, Loganberries, raspberries, tayberries, thimbleberries, wineberries, and Youngberries, and are related to the rose (genus rosa). They are found in every state of the United states, every province of Canada, and in most of Mexico. The blackberry is a caning shrub, often growing into thickets or brambles, usually armed with thorns, spines or stiff hairs, with 3-7 leaved leaflets but most often 5. It will grow almost anywhere, but particularly does well at wooded borders, along fences, in fallow clearings, and along roadsides, rivers and railroads. The berries form from white, showy, 5-petal flowers that grow in clusters in the early to late spring. The berries are actually rounded or thimble-shaped clusters sharing a common attachment to the stem. These in turn also grow in clusters that turn from light green to rose, then red, then deep purple to black, ripening in mid- to late summer. When ripe, the berries are very popular among birds and other wildlife. While this is a personal opinion, I believe that blackberry wine is best when made vintage — from fresh blackberries, without blending with other fruit or wines. I am especially excited about Oregon Cascade’s Marionberry Wine, which is made from 100% marionberry juice (no water added). I have never had so many blackberries of any kind that I could make wine from the juice alone. Having said all of this, a couple of blackberry blends are worth making and drinking and I have included them among the ten blackberry wine recipes on the next page.


Some of the more popular blackberry varieties and hybrids are:
  • 1826 — very large, firm fruit ripening in mid-July;
  • Andean Blackberry (Mora de Castilla) — rich, tart flavor;
  • Bear’s Blackberry — large, encroaching plants with large, delicious fruit;
  • Black Satin (Black Satin Thornless; Rubus lanciniatus) Blackberry — large (1 1/2 – 2 in.), sweet, glossy black fruit whose glossiness fades during ripening; winter-hardy to -15 degrees F.;
  • Boysenberry (Nectarberry) — hybridized in 1923 from the loganberry, various blackberries and raspberries; extremely larger (2 – 2 1/2 in.), practically seedless, non-shiny, dark maroon fruit with rich, tangy flavor and delightful aroma; hardy to -14 degrees F.; developed by Rudolph Boysen;
  • Boysenberry, Thornless — less vigorous with lower yields than thorny parent, but sweet, juicy, full-bodied flavor makes it more desirable for wine; easily transplanted, grows to 5 fee tall, self-pollinating, produces fruit first year after planting; ripens May to June;
  • Brazos Blackberry (Rubus lanciniatus) — big clusters of firm, sweet, juicy fruit that ripens in mid-May; disease resistant, commercial favorite; developed by Texas A&M;
  • Cascade Blackberry (Cascade Trailing, Rubus ursinus) — medium-sized but prolific fruit selected from the wild; blooms and ripens early; Pacific coast native from northern California to Alaska;
  • Cherokee Blackberry — cross between Brazos and Darrow; medium-sized fruit, but vigorous, productive and adapted to mechanical harvesting; ripens in June; developed by U. of Arkansas;
  • Chester Blackberry (Chester Thornless) — large, flavorful, very sweet, high quality fruit; hardy, productive, disease resistant, well suited to Midwest through Deep South; ripens in July;
  • Cheyenne Blackberry — large, very sweet, firm fuit ripening midseason; upright, moderately thorny canes adaptable to mechanical harvesting; developed by U. of Arkansas;
  • Choctaw Blackberry — Cross between Arkansas 526 and Roseborough by U. of Arkansas; medium sized fruit, mild flavor, smaller seeds than usual, good yields; ripens very early;
  • Comanche Blackberry — large, high quality, soft fruit; developed by U. of Arkansas;
  • Darrow Blackberry — Firm, high quality, long, conic, glossy black berries; low acid, wild blackberry taste, rich, fruity aroma; early ripening, strong upright 4-5-foot high canes that produce young and yield exceptionally large crops; self-fertile, exceptionally winter-hardy; great choice for Northeast through Midwest;
  • Dirksen (Dirksen Thornless) Blackberry — big, thick clusters of large, sweet, glossy black berries; exceptionally vigorous, highly productive, thornless plants with erect, self-pollinating canes; not particularly winter-hardy;
  • Ebony King Blackberry — large, long, purplish-black berries with delicious, sweet blackberry flavor; bears early before hot weather sets in; hardy to -20 degrees F.;
  • Eldorado Blackberry — large, black, glossy fruit with sweet, tangy flavor;
  • Evergreen (Evergreen Thornless, Oregon Evergreen Thornless) Blackberry — large, firm berries with large seeds, high sugar content, somewhat bland flavor; ripens in August, thornless canes, not recommended for Deep South;
  • Flordagrand (Florida Grand) Blackberry — large, tasty berries; well adapted to dry soils and Deep South; developed by U. of Florida;
  • Himalaya Blackberry (Rubus discolor) — rampant grower native to the Himalayas;
  • Hull (Hull Thornless, Rubus lanciniatus) Blackberry — similar to Black Satin; large to very large, firm, flavorful, sweet fruit; highly vigorous, semierect, thornless canes whose fruit hold up well on hot days; yields about twice as much as most thorned varieries; ripes in July; not suited for Deep South or Far North;
  • Illini Hardy Blackberry — Shiny fruit with a delicious, slightly acidic, wild blackberry flavor; more vigorous than Darrow, ripens in early August, does well in northern areas; developed by U. of Illinois;
  • Jumbo, Stark (Shawnee Cultivar) Blackberry — very large, tasty fruit up to 1 1/2 inches long; longer production season than most; not recommended for Deep South or Far North;
  • Kotata Blackberry — large, firm, tasty fruit that protrude from canes and are easily picked; West Coast variety ripening in July;
  • Lawton Blackberry — medium to large, firm, very sweet fruit with true blackberry flavor; strong, erect, dependable, winter-hardy canes;
  • Lochness Blackberry — thornless, fairly new variety;
  • Loganberry (Logan, Thornless Logan, Thornless Loganberry) — thought to be a cross between a wild blackberry and red raspberry; large, light red berries that do not darken when ripe; unique, tart flavor preferred by many over all other berries and very good for wine; thornless canes, average yields;
  • Marionberry — medium to large, medium firm, bright, shiny, redish-black berries; higher yields over a longer picking season than Boysenberries; developed for western Washington and Oregon;
  • Navaho (Navajo) Blackberry — very small berries with possibly the best flavor of any blackberry; thornless canes do well in Deep South; developed by U. of Arkansas;
  • Ollallie (Olallieberry, Rubus argutus) Blackberry — large, shiny, firm black berries that ripen in July; sweeter and less tart than others, with some wild blackberry flavor; vigorous, productive, thorny trailing canes; developed in Oregon but does extremely well in California;
  • Perron (Perron Thornless) Blackberry — vigorous, extremely productive, thornless variety developed in Canada for cold-hardiness;
  • Roseborough Blackberry — extra large, sweet, shiny, black berries similar to Brazos but with improved flavor and firmness; tolerates extreme heat and dryness and is well suited to the South; heavy crops on upright canes that are easily harvested; developed by Texas A&M;
  • Santiam Blackberry — wild type fruit that ripens in July;
  • Shawnee Blackberry — large, high quality, sweet, juicy, flavorful, shiny, black fruit; fast-growing, erect canes with consistently high yields and long fruiting season; probably the largest fruit and most productive of all thorny varieties; developed by U. of Arkansas;
  • Smooth Stem Blackberry — large, firm, luscious, jet-black berries; heavy producer, 35-40 berries on each stem; thornless, erect, extremely vigorous and disease-free canes; hardy in Midwest and South; early August; developed by USDA;
  • Snyder Blackberry — plump, sweet, juicy berries; high yields, reliable, self-polinating, winter hardy;
  • Sylvan Blackberry — cross between Boysenberry and Marionberry; large, very sweet, shiny, black fruit; vigorous, highly productive, thorny, trailing vines;
  • Tayberry — cross between Loganberry and black raspberry; juicy, cone-shaped, deep purple, slightly tart fruit; huge yields up to 12 tons per acre; vigorous even in difficult weather and bad soil; ripens late; named for Tay River, Scotland, where developed;
  • Thornfree Blackberry — medium-to-large, blunt, firm, glossy, black fruit; good, tangy-tart flavor; strong, vigorous, semi-upright, disease free canes; ripens late July to early August; hardy in Plains to Deep South; developed by USDA;
  • Thornless Blackberry — giant berries; ripens over long period; hardy to sub-zero temperatures;
  • Trailing Blackberry (Rubus ursinus) — choice native blackberry;
  • Tree Blackberry — large, delicious berries; huge bush, thorny, requires practically no care; adapts to wide variety of soils;
  • Tropical Blackberry — large berries up to 2 inches on extremely vigorous canes; bears in June and July;
  • Waldo (Waldo Thornless) Blackberry — high yields, highly flavored, easy to pick; introduced 1945 by Oregon State U.;
  • Womack Blackberry — averager size, some disease resistance;
  • Youngberry (Thornless Youngberry) — purplish-black, large (1.5 x 1.25 in), firm, shiny fruit; excellent flavor, less acid; canes immune to disease; very hardy, capable of surviving adverse weather; similar to Boysenberry, but ripens 10 days earlier with 20% less yield.

Sources of Information on Blackberry Cultivation

A number of schools (University of Arkansas, Texas A&M; University, etc.) offer excellent reference material on blackberry cultivation. But by far the most consistently reliable source of information tailored to your climate and soils is your County Agricultural Extension Agent. You can find him (or her) listed in the county government section of your local phone book. You can also order one of the following from Amazon.com: The Complete Guide to Growing Berries and Grapes Louise Riotte / Published 1993 Gardening in the Inland Northwest : A Guide to Growing Vegetables, Berries, Grapes, and Fruit Trees Tonie Jean Fitzgerald / Published 1984 Growing Berries and Grapes at Home Harold Clarke / Published 1976 Successful Berry Growing; How to Plant, Prune, Pick, and Preserve Bush and Vine Fruits Gene Logsdon / Published 1974, updated 2016 Alaska Wild Berry Guide and Cookbook Alaska Northwest Books | Revised Apr 23, 2018
Link source: https://web.archive.org/web/20010405052910/http://winemaking.jackkeller.net/blackbry.asp

Blackberry Wine (1) [Heavy Bodied]

April 5, 2001
  • 6 lb blackberries
  • 2-1/2 lb granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 7 pts water
  • wine yeast and nutrient

Wash berries thoroughly in colander, then crush in bowl, transfer to primary fermentation vessel, and pour 7 pts. boiling water over must. Allow to seep for two days, then strain through nylon sieve onto the sugar. Stir well to dissolve sugar, add pectic enzyme, cover well, and set aside for 24 hours. Add yeast and nutrient, cover, and set aside 5-6 days, stirring daily. Pour into secondary fermentation vessel of dark glass (or wrap clear glass with brown paper), adding water bring to shoulder, and fit airlock. Place in cool (60-65 degrees F.) dark place for three months. Rack, allow another two months to finish, then rack again and bottle in dark glass. Allow 6 months to age, a year to mature.

[Adapted from C.J.J. Berry’s 130 New Winemaking Recipes]

Blackberry Wine (4) [Light Bodied Sweet]

April 5, 2001
  • 3 lb blackberries
  • 2-3/4 lb. granulated sugar
  • 7 pts water
  • wine yeast and nutrient

Pick fully ripe, best quality berries. Wash thoroughly in colander, then crush in bowl, transfer to primary fermentation vessel, and add water, mixing thoroughly. Allow to seep overnight, then strain through nylon sieve onto the sugar. Stir well to dissolve sugar, add yeast and nutrient, cover, and set in warm (70-75 degrees F.) place one week, stirring daily. Pour into secondary fermentation vessel of dark glass (or wrap clear glass with brown paper), adding water to bring to shoulder, and fit airlock. Place in cool (60-65 degrees F.) dark place for three months. Rack, allow another two months to finish, then rack again and bottle in dark glass. Allow 6 months to age, a year to mature. [Adapted from C.J.J. Berry’s First Steps in Winemaking]

Brazos Blackberry Wine [Heavy Bodied Dry]

April 5, 2001
  • 5-6 lb. Brazos blackberries
  • 2-1/2 lb. granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. pectic enzyme
  • 7 pts. water
  • wine yeast and nutrient

Pick only the deep black ripe ones, and don’t be too concerned about gathering those which are a few days past ripe. Wash the berries carefully but thoroughly in a colander. Crush them in a bowl or crock, trasnfer the must to a primary fermentation vessel, and pour 7 pts. boiling water over must. Allow to seep for two days, then strain through nylon sieve onto the sugar. Stir well to dissolve sugar, add pectic enzyme, cover well, and set aside for 24 hours. Add yeast and nutrient, cover, and set aside 5-6 days, stirring daily. Pour into secondary fermentation vessel of dark glass (or wrap clear glass with brown paper) to shoulder and fit airlock. Place in cool (60-65 degrees F.) dark place for three months. Rack, allow another two months to finish, then rack again and bottle in dark glass and store in a dark place. Allow 6 months to age, a year to mature. [Author’s own recipe]

Blackberry-Black Plum Wine

April 5, 2001
  • 4 lbs blackberries
  • 2 lbs black plums
  • 2-1/4 lbs granulated sugar
  • 7 pts water
  • 1 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1 crushed Campden tablet
  • wine yeast and nutrient

Put water on to boil. Meanwhile, wash and sort the blackberries and plums. De-stone the plums and chop. In bowl, mash the plums and put in nylon straining bag. Add blackberries to bag, tie the end closed, and set in bottom of primary. Mash the blackberries in bag with potato masher or piece of hardwood. Add sugar to primary and pour boiling water over fruit pulp and sugar, stirring to dissolve sugar. Allow to cool to lukewarm, then add pectic enzyme, cover, and set aside two days. Add yeast and nutrient. Ferment 7 days, submerging and gently squeezing bag daily. Drip drain, transfer liquor to dark secondary and fit airlock. Set aside for 2 months. Rack and set aside another 2 months, then rack again. Allow to clear, then rack, refit airlock and bulk age another 4 months. Rack into bottles. Allow to age one year. [Jack Keller’s recipe]

Blackberry-Blueberry Wine

April 5, 2001

  • 4 lbs blackberries
  • 4 lb fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 2 lbs granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1/2 tsp acid blend
  • 3 qts water
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • wine yeast

Put water on to boil. Meanwhile, wash and sort blackberries and blueberries. Put fruit in nylon straining bag, tie end, put in primary, and mash fruit. Add sugar to primary and pour boiling water over fruit and sugar, stirring well to dissolve. Cover and allow to cool. When lukewarm, stir in acid blend, pectic enzyme and yeast nutrient. Recover, add yeast after 12 hours and gently squeeze bag twice daily for 7 days to extract flavors. Drip drain (do not squeeze) and pour liquid into secondary and fit airlock. After fermentation dies down (5-7 days) top up and refit airlock. Ferment 2 months and rack into clean secondary. Top up, refit airlock, and ferment until wine clears. Wait additional 2 months, rack into bottles and age 6-12 months. [Author’s own recipe]

Blackberry-Elderberry Wine (1)

April 5, 2001
  • 4 lb blackberries
  • 2 lbs fresh elderberries
  • 2-1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • water to 1 gallon
  • 1 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1/2 tsp acid blend
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • wine yeast

Put 3 quarts water on to boil. Meanwhile, wash and sort blackberries and elderberries. Put fruit in nylon straining bag, tie end, put in primary, and mash fruit. Add sugar to primary and pour boiling water over fruit and sugar, stirring well to dissolve sugar. Cover and allow to cool. When lukewarm, stir in acid blend, pectic enzyme and yeast nutrient. Recover, add yeast after 12 hours and gently squeeze bag twice daily for 7 days to extract flavors. Drain bag squeezing gently, pour liquid into secondary and fit airlock. After fermentation dies down (5-7 days) top up and refit airlock. Ferment 2 months and rack into clean secondary, top up and refit airlock. Repeat after additional 2 months and again after additional 3 months, racking into bottles. Age 6-12 months. [Author’s own recipe]

Blackberry-Elderberry Wine (2)

April 5, 2001
  • 4 lb blackberries
  • 1/4 lb dried elderberries
  • 2-1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • water to 1 gallon
  • 1 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1/2 tsp acid blend
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • wine yeast

Put 3 quarts water on to boil. Meanwhile, wash and sort blackberries and put in nylon straining bag. Tie end, put in primary and mash fruit. Add dried elderberries to boiling water, reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. Add sugar to primary, untie nylon bag and pour boiling water into nylon straining bag. Carefully retie end and stir liquid well to dissolve sugar. Cover and allow to cool. When lukewarm, stir in acid blend, pectic enzyme and yeast nutrient. Recover primary. After 12 hours, add yeast. Gently squeeze bag twice daily for 7 days to extract flavors. Drain bag squeezing gently, pour liquid into secondary and fit airlock. After fermentation dies down (5-7 days) top up and refit airlock. Rack into clean secondary, top up and refit airlock every 2 months for total of 4 times. Bottle and age 6-12 months. [Author’s own recipe]

Blackberry-Grape Concentrate Wine

April 5, 2001
  • 3-4 lbs blackberries
  • 12 oz red grape concentrate
  • water to 3-1/2 quarts
  • 2-1/4 lbs granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • wine yeast

Put 3 quarts water on to boil. Meanwhile, wash and sort blackberries and put in nylon straining bag. Tie end, put in primary and mash fruit. Pour boiling water over fruit. Add grape concentrate and sugar and stir well to dissolve. Cover primary with cloth, wait until cooled, add pectic enzyme and yeast nutrient. After 12 hours add yeast, cover and ferment 5-7 days, squeezing bag daily. Drain into secondary, fit airlock and ferment 5 days. Top up, refit airlock and ferment another 2 months. Rack, top up, refit airlock, and repeat 2 months later. After additional 2 months, rack and bottle. Allow to age in bottles one year. [Author’s own recipe]

Blackberry Port Wine

April 5, 2001
  • 8 lb. ripe blackberries
  • 1/2 pt. red grape concentrate
  • 1/2 c. light dry malt
  • 1-3/4 lb. granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. pectic enzyme
  • 1-1/2 tsp. acid blend
  • 5 to 5-1/2 pt. water (depends of size of berries)
  • 1 crushed Campden tablet
  • 1/2 tsp. yeast energizer
  • 1 tsp. yest nutrient
  • 1 pkt. Lalvin K1-V1116 (Montpellier) or a port wine yeast

Wash and crush blackberries in nylon straining bag and strain juice into primary fermentation vessel. Tie top of nylon bag and place in primary. Stir in all other ingredients except pectic enzyme, yeast and red grape concentrate. Stir well to dissolve sugar, cover well, and set aside for 8-12 hours. Add pectic enzyme, recover, and set aside additional 8-12 hours. Add yeast, cover, stir ingredients daily, and press pulp in nylon bag to extract flavor. When specific gravity is 1.030 (about 5 days), strain juice from bag and siphon liquor off sediments into secondary fermentation vessel. Fit airlock and set aside. Rack in three weeks and again in two months. When wine is clear and well past last evidence of fermentation, stabilize, add red grape concentrate, and set aside for 3 weeks. If no evidence of refermentation, rack again and bottle. Allow at least a year to mature, but will improve for several years. [Author’s own recipe]

Tinned Blueberry Or Blackberry Wine

April 5, 2001
  • 2 16-oz cans blueberries or blackberries in light syrup
  • 1-3/4 lbs granulated sugar
  • 3-1/2 qts water
  • 2 tsp acid blend
  • 1/8 tsp grape tannin
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • Montrachet wine yeast

Heat water, but do not boil. Drain syrup from fruit and set syrup aside. Put fruit in nylon straining bag, tie end closed, set in primary. Add sugar to hot water and stir well to dissolve sugar. Add syrup from fruit. Pour the water/syrup over fruit in primary, cover with clean cloth and allow to cool to room temperature (about 4 hours). Add remaining ingredients except yeast and recover primary. Wait 12 hours, add yeast and recover. Let ferment 5 days, punching bag down twice a day. Measure specific gravity. When S.G. reaches 1.020, drip drain (but don’t squeeze) the bag of fruit. Discard fruit or save it for jam. Allow wine to settle overnight and rack into secondary. Top up and fit airlock. Rack after 2 months and again after additional 2 months. If certain fermentation has ceased, bottle. If not certain, either wait another 2 months and rack into bottles or stabilize, wait 10 days, and rack into bottles. This wine may be tasted young, but will be much better after 9 months. [Author’s own recipe]

Dandelion And Blackberry Wine

April 5, 2001
  • 2 quarts dandelions petals
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blackberries
  • 2 lbs finely granulated sugar
  • 1 large lemon
  • 1 large orange
  • 5-1/2 pts water
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 crushed Campden tablet
  • 1/4 tsp tannin
  • wine yeast

Pick dandelion and remove and save only the petals, discarding the remainder. Put water on to boil. While water is heating, thinly peel the lemon and orange. Remove and discard pith from the lemon and orange and slice their fruit thinly. Put lemon and orange slices, peelings, flower petals, and blackberries in nylon straining bag, tie closed and put in primary. Add sugar to primary and pour boiling water over straining bag. Stir well to thoroughly dissolve sugar. Cover primary and set aside to cool. When room temperature, stir in tannin, yeast nutrient and activated wine yeast. Recover primary. Squeeze bag daily to liberate flavors and then stir liquid. After 5th day, drip drain bag over primary, squeezing gently, and discard petals and fruit pulp. Dissolve crushed Campden tablet in 1/2 cup warm water and stir into primary. Recover and ferment to specific gravity of 1.010 (14-21 days). Rack into secondary and fit airlock. Rack, top up and refit airlock every 30 days for 90 days. After racking, stabilize, allow to settle 2 weeks, and rack into bottles. Allow to age at least one year. [Author’s own recipe]

Blackberry Mead (1 Gallon)

April 5, 2001
  • 1.5 lbs black honey
  • 1 lb clover honey
  • 1 lb blackberries (frozen)
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • red wine yeast

Any black honey will work, but thistle honey is recommended. Mix honey into 3 qts
water and bring to boil. Boil 20 minutes, skimming off any scum that forms. Pour into
primary over thawed blackberries, pectic enzyme and yeast nutrient. When cooled to 70-
75 degrees, sprinkle wine yeast over surface. Cover and stir daily for 7 days. Strain
through fine nylon bag, squeezing pulp well to extract all flavor. Transfer to
secondary, fit airlock and ferment additional month. Rack, top up and refit airlock.
Age until clear, then stabilize. Wait 10 days and rack into bottles. Age at least one
year. [Adapted from a traditional recipe]

Blackberry Wine (2) [Medium Bodied Dry]

April 5, 2001
  • 4 lb blackberries
  • 2-1/4 lb granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1/2 tsp acid blend
  • crushed Campden tablet
  • 7 pts water
  • wine yeast and nutrient

Pick fully ripe, best quality berries. Wash thoroughly and place in nylon jelly-bag. Mash and squeeze out all juice into primary fermentation vessel. Tie jelly-bag and place in primary fermentation vessel with all ingredients except yeast. Stir well to dissolve sugar, cover well, and set aside for 24 hours. Add yeast, cover, and set aside 5 days, stirring daily. Strain juice from jelly-bag and siphon off sediments into secondary fermentation vessel of dark glass (or wrap clear glass with brown paper), adding water to bring to shoulder, and fit airlock. Place in cool (60-65 degrees F.) dark place for three weeks. Rack, allow another two months to finish, then rack again and bottle in dark glass. Allow a year to mature to a nice semi-sec. [Adapted from Raymond Massaccesi’s Winemaker’s Recipe Handbook]

Blackberry Wine (3) [Medium Bodied Sweet]

April 5, 2001
  • 4 lb blackberries
  • 3 lb granulated sugar
  • 1 gallon water
  • wine yeast and nutrient

Pick fully ripe, best quality berries. Wash thoroughly in colander, then crush in bowl, transfer to primary fermentation vessel, and add gallon of boiling water, mixing thoroughly. When lukewarn (70 degrees F.), add yeast, cover, and set in warm (70-75 degrees F.) place 4-5 days, stirring daily. Strain throught very fine nylon sieve or double thickness of muslin onto sugar and nutrient. Stir well to dissolve sugar and pour into secondary fermentation vessel of dark glass (or wrap clear glass with brown paper) to shoulder, and fit airlock. Ferment excess liquor in small bottle fitted with airlock or covered with plastic wrap held by rubber band. After all foaming has ceased (6-7 days), top up with excess liquor and place in cool (60-65 degrees F.) dark place for three months. Rack, allow another two months to finish, then rack again and bottle in dark glass. Allow 6 months to age, a year to mature. [Adapted from C.J.J. Berry’s 130 New Winemaking Recipes]