Currant is a unique berry which is famous for its healthiness and accessibility. Cottagers like it for its unpretentiousness and fair yield. There are seasons when there’s so much currants, they don’t know what to do with it. If you are fully stocked on preserves and compotes, then I suggest you find out how to make homemade black currant wine.
You can’t make currant wine without sugar and water because currants have low contents of sugar and juice. On the other hand, there are a lot of wild yeasts on their surface which are required for normal fermentation. That’s why we don’t have to use other yeasts or sourdough and this will have a positive impact on the taste of the beverage.
Black Currant Wine Recipe
• Black Currants – 22 lb / 10 kg
• Sugar – 11-13 lb / 5-6 kg
• Water – 4 gal / 15 liters
1. Sort out unwashed currants, removing tainted and unripe berries. Wild yeasts live on their surface, that’s why you shouldn’t wash them.
2. Mash currants by hands or with a wooden roller pin. Each berry should be mashed.
3. Dissolve half of the sugar norm (5.5 lb / 2.5 kg) in warm water (4 gal / 15 liters).
4. Mix currants pulp and juice with sugar syrup in a container with a wide neck (a pot or a bucket). Fill the container up to 2/3 of its volume. Otherwise, the must might overflow during the fermentation.
5. Tie up the bottleneck with gauze and leave it for 3-4 days in a dark warm place with optimal temperature of 65-74F° / 18-23°C. In order to prevent the must from souring, you should stir it with a wooden spoon or clean hands 1-2 times a day.
6. After 3-4 days when there are signs of fermentation (hissing sound, sour odor), pour the juice from the sediment into a separate contianer.
7. Squeeze the pulp through cheesecloth. Add 17.6 oz / 500 grams of sugar in obtained fluid, stir it and pour currant syrup into the bottle with the fermented juice.
8. Install air lock on a bottleneck.
9. Leave the container into a room with a temperature of 59-72F° / 15-22°C for 20-30 days.
10. You should taste the must every 4-5 days. If it gets sourer (sugar transformed into alcohol), you should add another portion of sugar – 18-26 oz / 500-750 gr. Repeat the procedure 2-3 times.
11. When active fermentation is finished (the water seal is not bubbling, the must is getting brighter, there’s a sediment at the bottom), pour the new currant wine through a narrow straw into another container to get rid of sediment.
12. Install the water seal on the wine container once again and leave it in a cool place (a cellar). It should stay there for 60 days (the longer, the better).
Some winemakers advise against installing a water seal and using cork instead. But if the fermentation is not yet finished (it’s hard for novices to determine that), then there’s a risk that carbon dioxide will explode the container, thus ruining your homemade wine. That’s why you should take care of carbon dioxide removal.
13. I suggest separating wine from the sediment through a straw every 20-25 days. Then you’ll end up with a bright wine.
14. After 40 days of infusion you can add sugar to the currant wine accordingly to your tastes.
15. At the final stage the beverage is separated from the sediment once again, bottled and then sealed with corks.
You should keep your homemade black currant wine in a dark cool place. Since there are no preservatives, its shelf-life is not very long – 300-400 days on the average. That’s why my advice to you is to drink it in a few months after making it.