Fig Wine

Let’s try this again.

So, my first ever “country” wine batch (back in 2012) was a fig wine, using figs from the tree in my backyard. I tried a natural fermentation (no cultured yeast), and I knew very little about sanitation and such; indeed, I avoided sanitizing the fruit at front so as not to kill the native yeast. In any case, it turned out Badly. Yes, upper-case. And I have avoided fig wine production ever since.

At first, I felt justified in doing so, as a local commercial wine-maker suggested they had never tasted a pleasant fig wine. Had I looked up recipes online, which I normally do, I most certainly would have seen that people do indeed make enjoyable fig wine. But, I did not, for whatever reason. In any case, last weekend I taste-tested a fig wine at Grape & Grains, and knew that it was possible to make drinkable – even tasty – fig wine.

So here I am, doing what I thought I would never again do. I started by picking figs in the back yard – coming up with just under 4 pounds of ripe to extra-ripe figs. I brought them in and began processing them, which involved washing them softly and then removing stems. In the end I had 3 1/3 pounds of figs, which I blended a third at a time in water (about a third of a gallon total). This fig purée was then poured into a fine mesh bag in the bottom of an adequately sized fermentation bucket. Then I added my smidgen (1/20 tsp.) of potassium metabisulfite.

I wasn’t exactly following a recipe, more following my recent experience. I knew I would be adding a tsp. of yeast nutrient, so I tossed that in. And then I was stumped for a moment. I thought it was likely I would need some amount of acid blend, and decided to check online. Jack Keller has a “famous” recipe, at least as far as can be seen from repeated mention in other’s posts; He uses 3 tsp. of acid blend in it. Well. I didn’t have that much on hand.

So I used what I had left (1 3/4 tsp.), and then grabbed a lemon. One lemon’s juice should do the trick.

As for sugar, I was guessing 2 pounds from the start – about average for one gallon of wine. Keller’s recipe uses 1 3/4 pounds. Another recipe I saw used 2 1/4 pounds. Notably, the one with less sugar has way more figs, the one with more sugar much less. So, I think my “guess” is just fine. I heated the sugar in another 1/3 of a gallon of water to dissolve, and then tossed nearly the remainder of the gallon in to cool it down. I let this sit for a while (cooling a bit more) and then added to the bucket.

And now I wait for the potassium metabisulfite to do its thing. 12 to 24 hours from now I will add pectic enzyme.

Hopefully this time things go better!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


About George

I'm interested in theology, languages, translation and various sorts of fermentation.
This entry was posted in Fermentation Log, Resources and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Fig Wine

  1. Pingback: A Little Bit Of This | Akahige Wines, Meads and Sundry

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s