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Wine making -elderflower

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RobinBHM

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I'm thinking of making some elderflower wine, I believe elder flowers are out from the beginning of June.

I am however a total newbie, so I thought Id ask if home made wine is easy to make as a novice and is elderflower wine a nice drink homebrewed.

TIA

ps keep safe all :D
 

Rorschach

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I was forced to make elderflower cordial in school, I thought I was being poisoned.
 

RobinBHM

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Rorschach":v74jab42 said:
I was forced to make elderflower cordial in school, I thought I was being poisoned.
Thanks :mrgreen:

I always say, start from a low bar then things can only go upwards :D
 

marcros

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I like the cordial, and I like the "Champagne" [edit, this is a non alcoholic drink that I use as a mixer, not sparkling wine]. I haven't tasted elderflower wine though
 

heronviewer

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I haven't mde it for some time, but elderflower wine is delicious - and you can make the sparkling kind too !
 

Tris

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Why wait? Hawthorn is in flower now and makes a lovely wine.

If you are near a Wilkinsons they stock wine making stuff as long as the panic buyers haven't been at it. You will need citric acid and tannin (lemons and strong tea), yeast, sugar and Campden tablets.
 

Bm101

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Some are out here too. Even the later ones are in bud. All that April sunshine.
Might try the chemist for brewing gear Robin. The one local to me sells kits at least.
 

Sheffield Tony

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My Dad used to make "country wines". I struggle a bit with some of the ideas - in purist circles it seems to be taken as a fault for the wine to actually taste of its ingredients, and in any case most of the recipies use ingredients quite lacking in sugars, so it is actually fermented granulated sugar flavoured with botanicals.

I make mead, and in a good year grape wine - I have Sylvaner and Schuerrebe at the bottom of the garden. It comes out a kind of pretty blush colour.
 

xy mosian

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From memory there are several varieties of Elderflower. Quite a few have flower heads that smell like cats, but there is one that smalls beautifully sweet. The latter makes lovely wine sadly the former don't.
Do go back later in the year. Elderberry and Bramble/Blackberry wine is absolutely gorgeous.
xy
 

Trevanion

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Just make sure you don't pick anything from a hedge on the side of a road, you'd be surprised how much difference there is in taste with pretty much any forage if you pick it from the roadside of the hedge vs the field side because of the pollution.
 

Nigel Burden

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I've never had any success making wine but my father used to make all sorts, elderflower, elderberry, blackcurrant, blackberry, beetroot, potato, rhubarb, parsnip, tea, to name a few. He wouldn't touch beer, cider or spirits, but we always had a good supply of home made wine.

Nigel.
 

RobinBHM

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Tris":3ul0w0di said:
Why wait? Hawthorn is in flower now and makes a lovely wine.

If you are near a Wilkinsons they stock wine making stuff as long as the panic buyers haven't been at it. You will need citric acid and tannin (lemons and strong tea), yeast, sugar and Campden tablets.
funnily enough, I went past some hawthorn in full flower yesterday, and said to my wife 'I wonder if thats any good for wine'.....

but how does homemade wine compare to shop bought grape wine? I tend to just buy the £5-£8 supermarket budgets, so I was hoping to create something at least as good, hopefully better (notwithstanding I appreciate the quality probably comes with experience).
 

Suffolkboy

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I make elderflower wine most years, I much prefer to ferment it out and prime champagne bottles to make it sparkling. Then leave it in the bottles for a year.

Whatever you do be meticulous with your hygeine/sterilisation.
 

AndyT

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I used to make quite a lot of wine and beer when I was a student with very little money. Later, I realised that most of the time spent on the 'hobby' I was actually washing up - so I gave the gear away.

One thing I can remember is that it's important to be selective about the blossom you use. Don't just use your eyes - stick your face in the flowers and breathe in. If you get a lovely complex blend of aromas and it's a dry sunny day, pick that blossom and use it straight away.
If it's late in the season and the dominant note is something more like cats, you've missed the moment. Wait a few weeks for the berries instead. The best elderberry wine can pass for Beaujolais.
 

Sheffield Tony

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RobinBHM":2qc3golh said:
but how does homemade wine compare to shop bought grape wine? I tend to just buy the £5-£8 supermarket budgets, so I was hoping to create something at least as good, hopefully better
Prepare yourself for disappointment...
Grapes are perfect for making wine - lots of sugar, acidity, colour and tannin from the skins if you chose to use them, and come complete with their own dusting of yeast. In fact it is harder to keep grape juice from becoming wine than to make it.

Pea pods, elderflowers and old boots lack most of these desireable characteristics.
 

Yojevol

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I've made elderflower wine in the dim distant past and I consider it one of the best you can make. On AA advice, these days we make elderflower cordial. Living where we do in the Severn valley we're at pretty low level and get the earliest of the blooms. However sometimes we're a bit late in gathering it from the hedgerows, but we have the luxury of having the Cotswolds nearby where the blossom is about 2 weeks later.
This year Boris may proclaim such effort to be 'non-essential'. We'll just have to find time to gather locally - difficult with all these L/D activities we've taken up!
Brian
 

Dokkodo

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Elderflower champagne can be absolutely exquisite, and pretty boozy! I more or less always use variations on this recipe. Careful though, i find it doesnt keep too well, i made 200L of it one year to take to glastonbury to dish out to friends and crew, and ended up with a fair bit left over which went stale. Though it was in a few big containers, would no doubt do better in smaller sealed bottles without air in.
 

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