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Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:32 am
by Skippy
Looking through my copy of C J Berry's book the other day I noticed he didn't recommend turnip wine although he didn't say why. I've subsequently checked a few old threads on here which came up with a recipe or two but couldn't find a post where someone had tried it and gave a verdict. There was one comment that the amount of starch present in turnips might make it difficult to clear but nothing else really. A google search didn't bring up anything better in all honesty although that might just be a poor search.
In his book he also doesn't recommend pumpkin or potato. Pumpkin sounds a way to use up all that flesh that a lot of people just waste and after hallowe'en it's often easy to find them cheap too. I did wonder about the taste as there never seems much of it when I've eaten pumpkins . Potatoes are one I have tried although the results were not what I expected . Not so much a wine as a pale brown pigswill that smelt disgusting. A friend tried it too and his came out as a thickish almost black wine that was probably far too sweet and tasted a bit like a not quite right sherry.
Anyone actually tried some of the wines Berry doesn't recommend?

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:27 am
by Odsox
Sorry, can't comment on any of JC Berry's wines.
But I thought it opportune to report back on my attempt at wine making http://www.selfsufficientish.com/forum/ ... 19&t=28942
I followed all the instructions I was given and made apple wine, white grape wine and blackberry wine. They have now been maturing for just about 3 years, and I can honestly say ... they still taste disgusting.
It WAS worth doing though, as I have now "got it out of my system" and can live the rest of my life without wondering if I ought to have another go at wine making. :iconbiggrin:

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:05 pm
by Brewtrog
Can't speak for turnip or pumpkin wine, although pumpkin is a traditional addition to beers.
On the other hand, I've made a "poor man's brandy" (Turner's recipe if memory serves) which was a mix of potato, pearl barley and raisins. It made a fantastic brew, though it took a few years to mature

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:07 pm
by Brewtrog
Quick update
Jack Keller has a couple of recipes (he always does)
http://winemaking.jackkeller.net/request150.asp

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:26 pm
by Skippy
Thanks for the link , one day I may give it a try. I've made wines from root vegetables in the past parsnip , beetroot and sugarbeet all came out well. Pumpkins in beer wasn't something I was aware of , perhaps I've tried too many of friends "efforts" that really didn't go too well that has put me off trying to brew beer.

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:30 pm
by Skippy
Oh , forgot to add . Odsox might have not had any luck with wines but apple and blackberry combined has produced some of the nicest wines I've ever made. Plain blackberry was the very first wine I made. I didn't even have a demijohn and used a 1gallon whiskey bottle and a scrounged airlock and bung. The holes are the same size so no problem there and sorry no I didn't drink the whiskey first , got the bottle for nothing .

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:15 am
by Green Aura
Is this turnip - little white/purple things, or swede - big yellow/purple things? If the former I'm guessing the overwhelming earthy taste would come through even a fermenting process and in the latter, unless they're extremely fresh they have a smell of old fart.

Not sure I'd want either of these traits in my wine. :lol:

My Dad made something called "poor man's brandy" which was potatoes and raisins. I was too young to drink it but as he never made it again, I'm guessing it wasn't good.

I've no idea why he wouldn't use pumpkin though. It would probably get really mushy during fermentation so maybe it's just too hard to clear. If it's just down to taste there are all sorts of things you could chuck in to improve that.

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:33 am
by Skippy
Hmm , that's made me wonder. I've always looked at turnips being those little white things you mention. Grown them in the past although I've not got any in at the moment. I do have swedes though. My wife tends to call swedes and turnips the same thing , neeps which is neither one thing or the other to me. I've just rechecked Berry's book and he refers to turnips but not any mention of swede so I'm non the clearer there. Swede always seems sweeter to me so maybe a better base than turnip?
The potatoe recipe sounds like the one I tried and that was awful. I can imagine certain wines are the sort of thing to try once and for one reason or another not bother with again. As I said I tried sugar beet which produced a drinkable wine but hardly what I'd call outstanding. Similarly I've tried rose petal , dandelion flower and a few others that have fermented all well and good but haven't scaled the heights of averageness .

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 2:24 pm
by Green Aura
I adore dandelion wine - hint of Retsina.

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:38 am
by Flo
:mrgreen: You lot aren't adverts for wasting perfectly edible food on home made wine and beer.

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:46 am
by Skippy
GA never tried retsina , I even had to google it , but it sounds interesting and fortuitously my wife and daughter are off to Greece tomorrow so I've asked them to get a bottle.
I know what you mean flo , or at least I think I do. I don't have any turnips in this year but I do have plenty of plums all perfectly edible but there's a awful lot of them. We've made a load of jam , there's some in the freezer and I am eating them fresh but there are still more and I've got a couple of buckets fermenting now.
Actually mentioning plums and edibles has anyone tried drying plums to make prunes? Can that be done over here or on domestic dehydrators ?

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:48 am
by Flo
Remember that Flo is allergic to alcohol (honestly, really, no joking) which may affect her reaction to your "efforts". :lol:

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 8:42 am
by Green Aura
Allergies notwithstanding, fermenting is a time-honoured way of preserving the harvest. So I'll have one for you Flo. :lol:

Re: Turnip wine ( and others)

Posted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 4:01 pm
by BernardSmith
Never tried to make a potato wine but if I were to I think I would simply boil the potatoes and use the liquid from the boiled tubers. Not sure how many potatoes I would boil but I imagine about 3-5 lbs (say, 1.5 - 3 kilo) and top the water to make 4 liters of must... No sludge. To this I would add perhaps a scant kilo of sugar (or perhaps honey - potato mead, anyone?), and when cool enough, yeast and yeast nutrient. I suspect - but taste would tell , that the wine that results will be very meh.. and will need some added acid - so perhaps some lemon juice to give it some tartness. It may also need some tannin so, adding oak cubes might be called for too. I imagine that this will be ready to age after about two weeks, and the aging might need to be as long as 6 months or more...