It’s berry season and I’m trying a new to me berry this year; Aronia.
The Aronia is native to the Americas, also known as Chokeberry, due to it’s astringency and slightly bitter taste.
It’s not a great berry to pick and eat, but great in wines, jams and syrups. Like most berries, it’s high in antioxidants and bioflavonoids which improve vascular health.
I found some growing locally and decided to try out making a wine; but I’ll have to let you know how it turns out in about a year. Beer is ready in about a week, but to get the fully developed flavor of a wine means waiting at least a year to see how it turns out! Totally different yeasts. And patience level…..
Aronia Berry Wine
- 3 lbs. Aronia berries
- 1/2 lb. raisins
- 2 lbs. sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp. yeast nutrient
- 1 tsp. pectic enzyme
- wine yeast
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1 tsp. loose black tea for tannins
- Campden tablet (Optional)
- water to one gallon
Bring one quart of water to a boil and pour over raisins and sugar in primary fermenter/ food grade bucket, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Mash berries with your favorite mashing device. Add to the bucket. Add loose tea and mix. If desired add Campden tablet. Let sit for 24 hours. Add pectic enzyme and yeast energizer. In a cup, pour orange juice (room temperature) and sprinkle yeast over it. Let it sit until the yeast is bubbly and softened and then add to the bucket. Stir with a sterilized spoon (I run the hottest water from the tap over it) once a day for 3-4 days. Strain marc (your wine ) into a carboy and attach airlock. Let ferment for about a week. Rack the wine by siphoning it into a clean carboy. Let ferment again for 3 months. Rack the wine again. Let ferment for another 3 months, and finally bottle the wine. It doesn’t hurt to test your wine to be sure it’s done fermenting. I had a mead pop corks last year and the floor got to drink it…. sad….. The Aronia wine is a beautiful dark blue purple color.
*To update this post, I opened a bottle recently and it turned out well! I’m going to make some more this year.