Park Ridge Living Article

This magazine is doing some great work in connecting our community. Before I decided to run, I was asked to write an article and it was just published.  Some of you have asked me to post it so here it is.

I started making wine in our basement the fall of 2017. We moved in to the house we built with my dad in the fall of 2015. My grandfather always made wine every fall in his garage, it was just always a neat thing to be a part of and be around. As I have gotten older, I have gotten interested in getting closer to the creation and the things we eat and drink. I enjoy growing our own vegetables and fruit and sharing them with friends and family knowing that I had a hand in bringing it to the table. Watching a seed burst through the soil and yield food with enough seeds to feed the block, makes we wonder how amazingly orchestrated this planet is. We often think we are so much more intelligent today than those that came before us, but in many ways, we are so removed from the basic knowledge of growing food and building shelter, they would wonder how we even survive today.

Back to wine, part of enjoying wine is talking too much.  Making wine blends chemistry, physics, biology, and puts them in a pot to enjoy. You need to source your grapes, there are a couple places locally that bring them in from California every year for purchase by the case. One cases will get you about 2.5 gallons of wine. Once you have grapes you need to crush them to release the sugar and try to remove as many of the stems as possible. Next add your yeast which there is too much of a variety to go through here and cover your container allowing for gas to escape. For the next 5-7 days you need to punch the solid matter that floats to the top down 3 to 5 times a day to keep it submerged. With a hydrometer test to make sure all sugar is consumed. After this, press the solid matter with a winepress, my grandfather gave me his, and remove all the leftover skin, stems, and seeds. Let this liquid settle for a couple days and siphon into your fermentation vessel leaving behind the residue that will consist of dead yeast cells, skins, and seed. You can do this one more time depending on how much sediment you have. Making sure to keep the wine airlocked in the vessel, after about 2 months you should be good to enjoy.