Homemade Persimmon wine has a beautiful yellow or amber shade to it with a light fruity and honey aroma. It’s popular in Korea and Russia.
You can use ripe persimmons of any variety. Just make sure that they are not astringent because this may result in a harsh wine. Prior to starting the wine making process, make sure that there are no blackened, tainted, and molded fruits. If necessary you can cut out the spoilt parts because this pulp might spoil the whole batch.
In order to avoid infecting the wine with pathogenic microorganisms, you should sterilize all of the vessels with boiling water and wipe them with a clean dry towel. Make sure to wash your hands with soap. When making wine it’s important to keep everything clean.
- Persimmons – 3 kilos
- Water – 2.5 liters
- Sugar – 650 grams
- Citric acid – 5 grams per 1 liter of must
- Ferment or wine yeast – per 6 liter of must.
Citric acid is required to stabilize acidity. Without it fermentation will be weak and wine will have short shelf life. It’s better to use freshly squeezed lemon juice instead of powder—one middle-sized lemon contains about 5-6 grams of citric acid.
If you’re using homegrown persimmon you can omit using wine yeast and ferment. Wild yeast on fruits surface will do its job. Store-bought fruits are usually treated with chemicals and they are less likely to ferment on their own.
How to Make Persimmon Wine
- If you don’t have wine yeast, you can make it yourself, 3-4 days before treating the persimmons you should prepare a ferment from unwashed raisins. Don’t add baker’s or distiller’s yeast or instead of wine you’ll end up with wash.
- Cut the persimmons in a few pieces and remove the pits and white pulp.
- Mince the pieces along with peels using a meat grinder or blender until you get a puree.
- Put this puree into a non-metallic vessel with a wide neck. You can use a bucket or tub.
- Dissolve 350 grams of sugar in cold water. Pour the minced persimmon with this syrup. Add the ferment or wine yeast and mix.
- Cover the vessel with cheesecloth or fabric and transfer it to a dark place with a temperature of 18-28°C. Leave it for 3 days. Stir the mixture every 8-10 hours to drown the pulp on its surface. Few hours after adding yeast you should notice foam on the surface, bubbling and sour scent. This means that everything goes according to the plan.
- Strain the must through cheesecloth or thick fabric. Squeeze the pulp till dry.
- Add citric acid and 150 grams of sugar to pure juice and stir. Pour the juice into a fermentation vessel. Fill it up to a maximum of 75% of the volume so that there is enough space left for sugar and foam. Install an air lock of any design on the neck of the container. You can also use a medical glove with a needle-pierced hole in one finger. Leave the filled container in a dark place with temperature of 20-28°C until the fermentation process is finished.
A simple air lock with a tube and medical glove
- 5 days after the air lock has been installed, add the remaining portion of sugar (150 grams). To do this, separately drain 100 ml fermenting juice, dissolve sugar in it, and pour the obtained syrup back into the fermenting wine vessel. Then close the container with the air lock once again. Depending on the temperature and yeast used, the fermentation process of homemade persimmon wine lasts 35-60 days. You can tell that the fermentation process has stopped if the air lock has stopped emitting gas (or the glove deflated), there’s no more foam, there’s a layer of sediment at the bottom, and the wine becomes lighter. You can go to the next step.
If the fermentation process lasts for more than 50 days after the air lock installation, the wine should be decanted and then put under the air lock again to ferment at the same temperature in order to avoid letting it become bitter.
- After the fermentation is over, gently decant the fermented wine into another container. Taste it and add more sugar to sweeten the taste if needed (optional). You can also increase ABV by adding vodka or alcohol in amounts of 2-15% of the wine volume. Increasing the ABV prolongs shelf life but makes the taste harsher.
- Fill the aging vessels with wine to the brim, so that there is no contact with oxygen. Seal them tightly (if you added sugar keep the vessels under air locks for the first 7-10 days). In case you added sugar during the previous stage you should install the air lock for the first 7-10 days to prevent refermentation.
- Transfer the wine to a fridge or cellar for aging. Leave it for at least 5-6 months. Aging significantly improves wine’s taste.
- In case of 3-5 cm sediment layer forming you should filter the beverage by pouring it through a tube into another vessel. The wine is considered ready when there’s no more sediment build-up for several months.
Wine’s shade depends on the color of persimmon peel and pulp
- Optionally bottle the wine for storage and hermetically seal it. Its shelf life in a fridge or cellar is up to 3 years. 10-14% ABV.