Hi All

Nothing amazing in this post, but I wanted to take a minute to talk about another somewhat prepper related activity I have taken up. Wine Making

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There are a couple reason I consider wine making more preppery, than beer making, namely the concentration of alcohol in the end product. Lets face it, end of the world scenario, everyone is going to want a nice stiff drink, and that drink is going to be very valuable. Beer is fine and great, but you need about double the volume to get the same alcohol content. Then there is liquor, which I would love to try to make, but the nanny state says that is wrong… So I store plenty, and have the knowledge to at least attempt to make some should the need arise. (Only thing I don’t know is where to get the right yeast post SHTF, and how to reproduce that yeast…)

So back to wine making. This is by no means a how to on wine making, because really I am just playing around with it and not super serious about making great wine. What I want is “good” wine that is cheap. I have made about 4 batches so far, and we just buy ingredient kits online with Amazon. If you shop it right with Prime, and Subscribe and Save you can get an ingredient kit showing up every couple months for about 35 dollars… Then buy 5 gallons o distilled water. And your cost to make 28+ bottles of wine is in the lower 40 dollar range, making each bottle less than 2 dollars, which is awesome. Even really cheap wine in a store will still be at least 3-4 dollars a bottle and not be that great.

The ingredient kit is just what it sounds like. You don’t have to mess with the actual fruit, they just send you corks, labels, must (big bag of grape juice, thick stuff), yeast and a few other additives. So far my first two batches have turned out great, easily matching a 10 dollar bottle in quality terms. Last two seem to have taken on a more bitter aftertaste, and I am not sure why. Each batch has been a different type of wine, so maybe thats it, or I started trying to tip the fermentor (large bucket/glass container) when racking (transferring to other container) to get the most wine out. Maybe I am pulling out too much of the dead yeast (lees) from the bottom of the fermentor and that is affecting the taste…. Was only gaining me about 1 bottle of wine, so I think I am going to stop doing that. My intent is to keep at least 100 bottles in the basement. Its good to recycle the bottle and great not to pay taxes to the state when I drink. So it really is a win win activity. Makes a great gift during the holidays also.

I bought my equipment from http://www.northernbrewer.com/ on a fathers day special. I bought a 200 dollar kit that it appears they no longer offer. The one thing I would highly recommend when sourcing a kit, don’t mess around with the hand corkers, trust me its not worth it. Get the 70 dollar floor corker. It makes the process so much easier and quicker. Ohh and don’t try to put wine in a champagne bottle. The corks are different and it doesn’t work out well.

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I haven’t messed around with trying to actually make wine all the way from fruit yet, that is a bit more involved, but its good to know I at least have some experience and most of the equipment needed to try, should the need ever arise. There are lots of apple orchards nearby. If ever there was a long term logistical supply, I could totally see the local price of apples drop amazingly if they cannot be transported out before spoiling. Apple wine?