Tuesday, 10 May 2016

I Can Still Drink The Wine

Wine making is, for me, just as much about making the wine as it is drinking it. Way back in the beginning, when I started making wine about 20 years ago, it was about getting a nice bottle of wine at a decent price; it was more about having the wine than making it. Fortunately back then I was in BC, where you could use a "u-brew" shop which would look after all the stuff in between initial ferment and final bottling.

Over the years I learned a fair bit about the process. That's because here in Alberta there are no "u-brew" shops; the law is different from province to province. In BC, the law deems that the act of putting in the yeast is what makes the wine. After that, you can keep the fermentation process going anywhere you like. And the act of bottling finished the process, so you are required to do that. On the other hand, here in Alberta the complete process is considered wine making, so you have to do it all in your home.

I don't care. Either way I like the process. It seems simple and pure to me. You start with grapes, or grape concentrate, and you end up with delicious wine. All the stuff, the gear, the equipment, the oak, the additives, all make sense to me. I can see why you need them. I understand what they do. I know what they are needed for.

For other people, those not inducted into the mystery, it all seems confusing, the different containers, the way I insist on sterilizing things, how I handle the wine, the racking processes. So many people who try it end up disappointed because what seems like an easy process can be difficult at times, especially if you don't stick to the directions carefully.

I know what it takes. I like what it takes. And I love that I can still do it, if not directly, then with the help of Katherine and others. I like that I can still create, that I can still make something even when trapped in my wheelchair. I can't lift the carboys but I can still manage the siphon. I can't do the bottling but I can still manage the labels. And of course, I can still drink the wine. I'll be able to do that long after I can no longer make it.


  1. Teach Katherine to make wine and then you can watch when you can't do it yourself.love you Mom

  2. if. think of yourself as the exception. did you name your wine?

    1. I make specific varietals of wine, such as Merlot or Malbec. Most of these kits come with labels, so I don't name it anything special.