WINE QUESTIONS ANSWERED
by Paul Howard
My Uncle Harry used to make lovely homemade wines, everything from parsnips to elderberries – they tasted great and were potent too! My favourite was sparkling Elderflower. However, my own homemade winemaking attempts were shocking! These days there are easier ways to start out using kits and grape concentrate and you can achieve good results with patience and practice. Try Abbey Home Brew in Leeds for kits and advice.
Making wine from ingredients other than grapes has a long history in Britain but isn’t so popular these days. This is probably because of the effort when compared with the convenience of sourcing and buying inexpensive reliable grapes. Grapes are also unique because no other fruit possess their natural gifts of acids, tannins and sugars. That dubious “homemade” image also acts as a very effective deterrent and the flavours of some are unfamiliar. Meanwhile, apples and pears are fermented into Cider and Perry respectively. There are companies such as Yorkshire Country Wines (based near Harrogate) that make a range of traditional fruit wines – and there are others located up and down Britain.