Hand Made Sparkling Strawberry Wine | Volunteer Gardener

By Brian Lemay 2 comments


¶- Beans Creek Winery
¶in Manchester is in
¶a modern building, ¶right on a busy interstate, ¶¶but when you walk
¶¶into the building, ¶¶you’ve got a charming way
¶¶of old-fashioned methods for doing champagne with
100% Tennessee fruit. ¶So I’m here with Josh Brown, ¶who is the second generation
¶winemaker here at Beans Creek. ¶Josh, this is the most
¶interesting process for making this sparkling wine, ¶so walk us through it, ¶because I know it’s
¶very time-consuming
¶and labor-intensive. ¶¶- This is actually
¶¶the second step of the process that
we’re seeing right now. First step actually takes place ¶in the tanks upstairs through
¶the initial fermentation. The process that we
use for this champagne, ¶¶but we can’t call it that ¶¶’cause it doesn’t
¶¶come from France, ¶¶is a secondary
¶¶fermentation in the bottle ¶where the CO2, carbon dioxide, ¶is actually trapped
¶in that bottle, ¶and that’s what gives
¶you your bubbles ¶¶from your sparkling wine. ¶Then we do a process of
¶(speaks in foreign language) bottle fermentation, to make
it a sparkling strawberry wine. ¶¶- [Tammy] Okay, so tell us ¶how you get the
¶bubble in the bottle. ¶- Well, in the
¶fermentation process, you have a sediment from
the spent yeast cells, ¶and in the bottle fermentation that we do with the strawberry, ¶we have actually sediment in
¶the bottom of that bottle, ¶¶and that is the
¶¶spent yeast cells ¶from that secondary
¶fermentation. ¶- [Tammy] Okay, I can see
¶them floating around in there ¶and settling at the
¶bottom of the bottle. – [Josh] Yes, now, that
doesn’t hurt anything, but you wouldn’t want to
drink that, would you? ¶¶- [Tammy] No, not really. ¶- [Josh] So we need
¶to clean that up ¶and make a nice clean,
¶clear champagne, ¶so the bottles that
¶are laying down, ¶¶that is actually starting
¶¶to work the sediment down ¶to where we can get
¶it out of the bottle ¶by leaving the
¶wine in the bottle. What you’re seeing here
has been in the bottle ¶for about two years
¶already, because the process of that bottle
fermentation is so long. ¶- [Tammy] Then the next
¶step is for it to be placed ¶¶into these quite
¶¶interesting-looking racks. ¶- Well, these are
¶called riddling racks, ¶and what you see here,
¶and this is a bottle, ¶that, as you can see,
¶the sediment down ¶towards what would be
¶the top of the bottle if it was upright, the
sediment that is coming all the way down from the bottle ¶¶and settling in that neck
¶¶around that crown cap. ¶¶So, in the riddling racks, ¶these bottles are hand-turned two to three times a day ¶¶to start working
¶¶that sediment down ¶into the neck of the bottle. ¶¶- Got it. ¶So how long do they
¶stay in this rack? ¶- About three weeks. ¶- [Tammy] Okay, so basically, ¶¶what’s happening
¶¶in the bottle is, ¶the yeast is eating the sugar, and it is causing this sediment ¶that you’ve got to get
¶out before it’s ready ¶for it to be consumed. ¶¶- [Josh] Correct. ¶- All of this long
¶process is necessary ¶for it to be nice, and clear, ¶¶and bubbly at the
¶¶end of the day. ¶- [Josh] Yes. ¶¶- [Tammy] Then, obviously,
¶¶you gotta somehow get ¶¶all of that off while the
¶¶bottle is upside down. ¶How does that happen? ¶- [Josh] Cold. ¶¶So, these are the bottles
¶¶that have come out ¶of the riddling rack, ¶and this is a freezer that
¶we’ve got a bronze solution in ¶to freeze that sediment plug ¶¶to be able to get it out, ¶and have clean,
¶clear sparkling wine. ¶- Okay, so again,
¶it stays upside down ¶through this whole process, ¶and when you pull this out, then you should have the
frozen plug, correct? – Correct, yes. So, we’ve got that frozen plug. ¶¶You can see that
¶¶ice right in here. – [Tammy] Yeah. – So now, we gotta get that out. ¶Again, these bottles are under
¶about 90 pounds of pressure ¶from that fermentation
¶in that bottle, so, to get that out, all
we do is come over here. We’ll rinse a little bit
of that off the neck, ¶¶and then we just
¶¶pop this cap off. ¶¶Let’s make sure we get all
¶¶that sediment out of it. ¶We’ll put a little temporary
¶plug on this bottle. So, from here, this is
basically a dry sparkling wine, ¶so we do sweeten
¶this up a little bit ¶to about the sweetness ¶of what the berries
¶come in from the farm. ¶¶- Got it. – So I have to add a little bit ¶¶of a simple sugar
¶¶solution to that, ¶¶but first, before
¶¶I add my sugar, I have to take a little
bit out of each bottle ¶¶to make sure it
¶¶doesn’t overflow. ¶¶- [Tammy] Got it. ¶- To add our simple
¶sugar solution, ¶we have our high-tech
¶farmer’s pipette, is what my dad used to call it. ¶Just a little syringe ¶¶that we inject this simple
¶¶sugar solution into, ¶¶and you want to do
¶¶it nice and slow so it doesn’t really
interrupt the champagne, ¶¶or the sparkling wine, I
¶¶keep calling it champagne. ¶So we let it sit there
¶for just a minute. ¶Now, I do want to add a
¶little bit more back to that ¶to make sure that
¶the bottle is full. ¶- Will that come from this? ¶- Yeah, this bottle,
¶I use for overfill, ¶¶and then, if I have poured
¶¶more out of a bottle ¶than I put sugar in, ¶I’ll just add some back to it. ¶¶- Got it. ¶- [Josh] So we just
¶want to get that. ¶¶Everything is kinda slow
¶¶with the champagne process ’cause you can see, it
kinda agitates it there ¶if you want to do it.
¶- Yes, it does. – So, what we’ve
gotta do now is, we have to put the actual plug, ¶¶or champagne cork, in it, ¶¶and then we put a
¶¶wire hood over it. ¶- [Tammy] Okay, show
¶me how you do that. – All right, so, again,
it’s more hands-on. ¶¶We do use just a synthetic
¶¶cork, champagne cork. ¶It’s brute strength
¶going in with it. ¶¶So, we take that
¶¶temporary cap off. (bottle rumbles) ¶Then we have to give
¶it a little love tap (hammer pounds) to make sure that that
is seated in there well so it doesn’t come out, and again, it’s under pressure. ¶I don’t ever take
¶my thumb off of this ¶¶because the pressure could
¶¶blow that cap back out. ¶¶- Got it. ¶¶- It has happened. ¶So the wire goes on,
¶and then, to seat it, ¶¶we get five turns,
¶¶which gives it about five and a half rotations. Five won’t hold it, six
will break that wire, ¶¶so now, we have
¶¶a finished bottle ¶of sparkling strawberry wine. ¶¶- And it’s all
¶¶been done by hand. – All been done by hand.
– That’s the best part. ¶- [Josh] Yes. ¶- [Tammy] Josh, here’s our
¶100% ready-to-consume bottle. ¶Tell us about the
¶uniqueness of this product. – [Josh] Well, as far as I know, ¶we’re the only one in
¶the state of Tennessee ¶¶that are doing a
¶¶sparkling strawberry wine. – That’s great. ¶I think we need to taste it. ¶¶- Well, let’s go with it. ¶- Is there a trick to opening? ¶- Well, there is a little bit ¶because, as you saw
¶when I did the bottle, I give it a little
love tap, to that cork, ¶¶to make sure it’s
¶¶seated in there, so sometimes, it takes a little
bit of effort to get it out. ¶But undo the foil, you gotta
¶take the wire hood off, ¶and again, I’m gonna
¶keep my thumb on it ¶just because I don’t
¶want it blowing. ¶Again, with safety, any time
¶you’re doing a champagne ¶or sparkling wine, you
¶never want to point the cork ¶at anyone, so it’s
¶either up, or away. ¶- And twist. ¶(bottle pops) ¶Oh, sweet.
¶- You got that pop. ¶- [Tammy] Beautiful. – [Josh] So, as you
see, in the glass there, ¶¶those bubbles, they’re
¶¶very small, tiny bubbles, ¶and they’re going, and they’re
¶going, and they’re going. ¶That is a tell-tale sign that
¶that sparkling wine is done. ¶This true (speaks in foreign
¶language) bottle-fermented, ¶and that’s what the secondary
¶fermentation in that bottle. – So, if you see larger bubbles ¶that are kind of exploding
¶like a carbonated beverage? – That’s a sign of a
artificially carbonated
sparkling wine ¶¶that basically, they add
¶¶CO2 as it’s being bottled. ¶¶- Got it, so we want these
¶¶tiny bubbles in there. ¶- Yes. ¶- Absolutely. Well, Josh, thank you
for this wonderful tour, and showing us how this is done, ¶and then I just have to say, ¶¶let’s just toast to local. (glasses clink) – [Lauren] For
inspiring garden tours, ¶¶growing tips, and
¶¶garden projects, ¶visit our website at
¶volunteergardener.org, ¶or on YouTube at the
¶Volunteer Gardener channel, and like us on Facebook. ¶(soft acoustic guitar music)

2 Comments

Sandy Marshfoot – Traveling Hobbit

Oct 10, 2019, 5:37 pm Reply

That looks great. Could I order a bottle of Dry ?

Tasty Escapes

Oct 10, 2019, 1:48 pm Reply

I didn't even know that you could make wine out of strawberries 😀 😀 good to know

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