A Tiger Barn Cattery Wine Recipe

This elderberry and blackberry wine recipe is the same as any port style wine recipe, you need 5 Lbs of fruit in any combination and a port wine yeast, some patience a hydrometer and paper for notes of SG drops so you know when to stop adding sugar!

2.5 Lbs of Elderberries
2.5 Lbs of Blackberries
7 pints of boiling water
1 crushed campden tablet
1 tsp pectic enzyme
1 tsp citric acid or 1 lemon's juice
2-3 Lbs of sugar
1 tsp of yeast nutrients
Ritchies Pot Wine Yeast

Whatever elderberry wine recipe you choose, don't add any tannin. If you have elderberries in a recipe, you don't need to add grape juice, raisins or tea ... Also, you can use a few more and get a real heavy body to the wine.
One other thing, while I totally love elderflower, I really dislike a strong elderberry flavour, but this wine when it's mature is wonderful.


From my notes:

Tuesday 14th September 2010

Our friend Clair in North Devon had invited us around for tea. I like going there as she's in a damp yet picturesque North Devon village within Dartmoor National Park that I tend to peruse for seeds for next year's wildflower beds. However, this time it was a great day, for elderberries. I hadn't noticed before that she had a massive tree festooned with dark, swollen purple berries, all dying to come home with me. Andrew, her live in friend decided to help harvest and while I went in with a few handfuls of heads to strip, he followed me every 5 minutes with piles until I had to stay "Stop!". I had 4 gallons of heads to strip with a fork and no idea how many berries I had when we left.

There were 6 Lb's of elderberries from Claire's garden. I stripped, stalked and froze 2.5 Lbs for this Port-style wine. Port style just means more fruit per gallon, a different strain of yeast and adding boiled sugar syrup in batches. It's a pain to do it this way if you're trying to keep track of the alcohol content ... The general idea about winemaking is that you add sugar so that you end up with a final drop of 95 points on the hydrometer so you have enough alcohol to preserve the wine in the bottle but not so much that will kill the yeast before it reaches say 0.995 (A dry wine)

Wednesday 15th September 2010

2.5 Lbs frozen Elderberries
2.5 Lbs frozen Blackberries (Hillyfield 2010 09 12)
Added 3 pints of boiling water
Crushed the fruit by hand and added a campen tablet.

Left until bedtime
Added 1 tsp Pectolase

Thursday 16th September 2010

1 Lb of sugar boiled in 2 pints of water and cooled
Add TronOzymol yeast nutrient
Add Ritchies Port Yeast

SG: 1.063

Stirred twice daily for 7 days.

23rd September 2010

SG: 1.001
A fermentation of 0.062 on the first Lb of sugar

Strained into demijohn
Add 1 Lb of sugar boiled in 2 pints of water and cooled
SG: 1.032

October 1st 2010

1st Rack
SG: 0.994
A fermentation of 0.038 on the second Lb of sugar

Rack into bucket.
Added 12 Oz of sugar
SG: 1.020


1 Gallon of Elderberry & Blackberry Port wine.
SG: 1.020

21st October 2010

2nd Rack
Topped up with Elderberry and Blackberry Port reserve.
SG: 0.995
A fermentation of 0.015 on the last 12 Oz of sugar
Alcohol calculation
(62 + 38 + 15) / 7.4 = 15.5%

28th October 2010

SG: 0.994

Tuesday 9th November 2010

SG: 0.994


Clearing & Maturing: 1st Feb 2011

Bottled: 20th February 2011 - 6 x bottles

Drinkable: February 2012