The technology of making wine from frozen grapes at home
Wine made from fresh frozen grapes (ice) is considered to be a dessert drink. The principle of its preparation is based on thermal processing of berries and obtaining a more concentrated and sweet drink. The grapes are still frozen on the vine, before the fermentation process begins. Ripe and healthy berries are used for preparation, this helps to make the drink tasty and aromatic.
History of the origin of ice wine
Making wine from frozen grapes began in the 18th century in Germany. You can read about this in German documents. In those days, the product was not considered popular, it was produced only by amateur winemakers. But already at the beginning of the 20th century, when the pneumatic press was invented, ice wine became a common drink that was prepared in many manufacturing plants. Closer to the middle of the 20th century, the product spread to America, and after that the popularity reached Russia.
An ice drink is considered weak, it contains only 6% alcohol. In some cases, the indicators rise to 8%, but no more. In the process of preparing the product, grapes are used that have been naturally frozen. Usually the crop is harvested when the air temperature reaches 5 degrees below zero. Sometimes frosts do not come for a long time, so winemakers wait for the first opportune moment, at the same time protecting the berries from mold, insects and birds. It is very important at this point to take care of the integrity of the grapes so as not to affect the taste of the finished drink.
It is worth noting that for freezing, the optimum temperature is considered to be from -5 to -10 degrees below zero. At -15 the grapes may become unusable for winemaking due to lack of juice. When the crop is harvested, it is crushed and sent to the press. Some countries use more simplified training techniques. For example, in Japan, berries are artificially frozen. However, this method of preparation does not produce real ice wine.
Important! The fermentation process in this case takes longer than usual. This is due to the high sugar content of frozen berries. It usually takes about 4-5 months to prepare the product.
Suitable grape varieties
In creating wine, the main emphasis is placed on the way the berries are processed, and not on their variety. Therefore, there are no clear requirements here. Experienced winemakers advise using the following varieties:
- Cabernet Franc.
The use of other types of berries is also permissible.
The quality of the resulting product
Wine made from frozen grapes should be light and sweet. It contains a lower percentage of alcohol, so the drink is considered to be dessert. Today, the drink is made and sold in many countries, but often manufacturers deceive customers and supply counterfeit products to stores. In order not to be mistaken in your choice, you should carefully study the information on the labels. A quality product has the iced wine mark, which translates as “frozen wine”. If there is no such inscription, it is better not to purchase the product.
How to make wine from frozen grapes at home
Fresh, freshly harvested grapes are used for home cooking. The process will require about 5 kg of frozen berries, 2 kg of granulated sugar and 6 tablespoons of wine yeast. When all the ingredients are prepared, you can start preparing a dessert drink:
- Remove the frozen fruits from the branches. It is important to have time to do this before the ice melts.
- Put the workpiece in a deep container and grind it thoroughly. It is best if the procedure is carried out in a cool and well-ventilated place.
- Pour the juice obtained after pressing into a clean container, pour the yeast into it and cover the container with gauze. Leave the workpiece for 2 days. The liquid mixture should ferment and begin to sizzle.
- After that, add sugar to the mass, mix the wine base thoroughly. It is necessary to wait until the granulated sugar is completely dissolved.
- Put a medical glove on the neck of the container, after making a small hole in it.
- In this form, the wine is sent to a warm room and left for 1 month. During this period, it should begin to ferment.
- Strain the product with a rubber tube. It is necessary to try to prevent the sediment from getting into the wine itself, otherwise it will begin to ferment again, which ultimately affects the taste of the ice product.
- Pour the filtered mass into glass bottles and take it to the cellar for 2-3 months. During this time, the wine will finally infuse and acquire a sweet taste.
- When time has passed, the drink is again passed through the filter and the finished product is lowered into the basement for storage.
Important! Alcoholic beverages are stored at temperatures from 0 to 6 degrees Celsius. Large numbers can harm the quality of the drink.
The shelf life of ice wine is kept at around 4-5 years. It can decrease if important points were not taken into account in the cooking process.
Some winemakers recommend drinking the finished product in the first year, as its taste may change later.
How to drink ice wine
Ice wine is considered to be a dessert drink, therefore it is served with light and delicate sweet snacks. It is permissible to combine it with various types of cheeses, fruits and nuts. This combination helps to truly appreciate the taste of the berry product. Eiswein is served young, this variety of wine is not customary to age for a long time. Although some types of ice drink acquire a more tart and woody taste during aging, which is loved by many connoisseurs of wine products.
Ice vine is consumed cold. Optimum indicators are kept at around 10-12 degrees. The drink is served in glasses used for white or red wine. It is not recommended to mix ice wine with stronger alcohol.