How to Make Herbal Wine

August 4, 2009
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Mountain Rose Herbs has published a wonderful article on how to make your own herbal wine. From understanding the basic alchemy behind wine making to several at home recipes you can try, this article will get you started on everything you need to know. Make some for yourself or as gifts for your best friends. Wouldn’t it be fun to organize a wine tasting party where everyone brings a bottle of their own homemade brew?
Homemade wine bottled and corked
“You can make wine out of anything but a rock!” Appalachian winemaker John Bulgin explains in The Foxfire Book of Winemaking. My experience says he’s right. When local lawns are covered with dandelions, I race my neighbors’ lawnmowers to behead the little beasts for my favorite herbal wine. When I prune back the grape arbor in midsummer, I strip leaves from excised vines for a beverage that rivals a good Riesling. And when a local farm had a surplus of nicked potatoes, I combined them with ginger and other herbs to create a sweet dessert wine that kept my friends guessing the secret ingredient.
Winemaking most likely began in the Neolithic Period (8500 to 400 b.c.), and early archaeological evidence places winemaking at a site near Mesopotamia (ca. 4000 b.c.) and another in what is now Georgia (the former Soviet state, not the home of Atlanta) between 5000 and 7000 b.c. The Old English word wyrt, which evolved into wort, described a liquor made from mashing and fermenting plant leaves. Plainly, we humans have been at this business of turning herbs into wine for a very long time. If our ancestors could do it, you can too.
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