Appalachian Blackberry Wine

Blackberry wine recipe

The Spruce / Teena Agnel

Prep: 30 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Soak and Fermentation: 264 hrs
Total: 264 hrs 40 mins
Servings: 32 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
1546 Calories
0g Fat
399g Carbs
1g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 32
Amount per serving
Calories 1546
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 24mg 1%
Total Carbohydrate 399g 145%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Protein 1g
Calcium 75mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

A unique way to capture the taste of freshly picked blackberries is blackberry wine. Sweet and full-bodied, homemade wine is easy to make and a beautiful beverage that goes well with all types of meals, as it has a mildly sweet flavor that won't overpower your meal. Ideal also as a dessert wine or to enjoy with a cheese platter, this blackberry wine is a great way to use summer berries when your garden produces more fruit than you can cook, eat, or preserve. Enjoy a glass of blackberry wine with your next brunch menu, or offer it as a pre-dinner glass with some appetizers. Adapted from an old Appalachian recipe, our beautiful wine has a deep color, which also makes it visually stunning. Blackberry wine is best served chilled, so plan on keeping it in the refrigerator once it has fermented.

This wine takes a total of eleven days of fermentation, after which you can enjoy or keep it in the fridge to slow down the process and extend the shelf life of the beverage. There is no special equipment needed for this recipe besides a non-reactive pot (stainless steel, ceramic, glass, or metal coated with enamel) and a large mason jar or similar container that fits at least six quarts of liquid (1.3 gallons). For the fruit, choose sweet and juicy berries, because the wine is only as good as the fruit you are using. Although the recipe contains a substantial amount of sugar, there is no way of hiding bad fruit—not even good fermentation can help. The better the fruit, the better the wine. Before starting, cover the fruit with fresh cold water and pick out any damaged pieces, leaves, sticks, and possibly bugs and little pests that might be in the fruit. Drain all the good berries and mash with the help of a big wooden spoon.

Although it's difficult to measure the exact amount of alcohol that homemade wine has, don't forget that this is indeed an alcoholic beverage that's not suitable for kids or people who need to abstain from alcohol for health or personal reasons. Be mindful that this wine also contains egg, as one egg white is used to help clarify the wine. Many wines fermented in barrels are clarified by gravity as all the sediments and solids fall to the bottom of the barrel and are removed with a siphon, but homemade wines need a little extra help. The albumen in the egg white acts as a fining agent and helps remove the harsh tannins and give the wine a softer texture and rounder taste.

Ingredients

  • 5 1/2 quarts water, divided
  • 7 quarts fresh blackberries, mashed
  • 1 egg white
  • 7 pounds granulated sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for blackberry wine
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  2. In a large stainless steel or crockery container, combine 3.5 quarts of the water with the blackberries.

    Put blackberry wine in pot
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  3. Cover and let stand for 24 hours. 

    Cover pot
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  4. Beat the egg white and transfer to a large saucepan.

    Beat egg white
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  5. Stir in the sugar and the remaining 2 quarts of water.

    Stir in sugar
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel 
  6. Bring to a boil and boil for 5 minutes.

    Add sugar
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  7. Skim any foam off of the top and let cool.

    Water
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  8. Add the syrup to the blackberry mixture.

    Blackberry
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  9. Stir and pour into a jar. Place a cloth over the mouth of the jar and then screw on the lid.

    Blackberry in jar
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  10. Skim the wine each morning for 10 consecutive mornings.

    Cloth over jar
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel
  11. Cover with a cloth and let stand until fermentation stops, or when it stops looking bubbly around the edges. Strain out the solids, cover the wine and transfer to the fridge, which will slow down any further fermentation.

  12. Serve and enjoy.

    Blackberry wine
    The Spruce / Teena Agnel

Tips

  • It will take the wine at least 10 days for fermentation to stop. Keep an eye on it and be patient.
  • Instead of discarding the solids, save them to serve over ice cream.

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