Sunday, June 5, 2011

At long last ... Wine!

It's been about eight months ago that I wrote about my first adventures in winemaking. And last week Ben and I bottled our first batch: Rip Rap Rosehip Wine.
You can see I look a little ragged. We fumbled a quite a bit with the hoses and siphons, and it took some experimenting to learn how to use the bottler (pictured there in front of me) Needless to say, we spilled more of the wine than we wanted to, but we managed to get 10 good bottles in two varieties. One was made with just rosehips, lemon juice and lots of clover honey. The other is made with rosehips, cane sugar and a pound of golden raisins. In our busy-ness of bottling, we didn't stop to compare the two varieties side by side, but, oh well, we'll have company over soon to help us with that.
We sweetened the final product, too, because we thought it could use a flavor boost, but it's still got quite a floral character. Isn't it such a lovely color?
Ben's father, a graphic designer, put together this logo for us for the labels.
We're calling it Rip Rap Rosehip after the location where we found the rosehips. Riprap is the large rock material used to shore up the banks of rivers where erosion is liable to take out a road or stretch of train tracks. We harvested our rosehips from a riprap bank along the Yellowstone near Columbus last fall.
Next batch to come: Plum, five gallons, our first big batch!

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