My darling Steveio has been making his own cherry wine over the last 5 or 6 years. This year was extra special because the cherries were from his OWN tree that I bought him a number of years ago. It finally bore enough fruit this year for 2 batches of wine!
And this is his bumper crop of a harvest in July…. the tree was just LOADED!
The day that we had to harvest them was on a Thursday before going camping.
It was hot, humid and muggy. We HAD to get them picked before the coons and birds raided them. So we sat on lawn chairs in the yard, pitting till it got dark out. There were still more cherries on the tree!
Once we got this batch pitted and refrigerated, then we had to pick the rest of them … and we took the last buckets of cherries along camping! We sat at our campsite and pitted more cherries all evening. Good thing we have a big fridge in the motorhome!
You shoulda seen the looks we got from folks in the campground, two folks intently leaning over our buckets and pitting cherries!
He uses this old wine press to get the juice outta the cherries and leaves the bitter skins behind. He froze some of the cherries to spread his batches apart by 2 months. He also now has green grapes he grew himself that he froze the juice from to work on another batch later.
After fermenting them in big glass carboys for 4 months till the wine is ready to be bottled…. once it’s in bottles, the longer it sits on the rack, the better. He does this all down in our basement storage room, outta daylight.
And now we have 25 nice bottles lining the wine rack…. I print up his labels and he saves the wine for very special occasions or special friends… So if you have gotten a bottle from him, you KNOW you are someone special!
(and if you didn’t … get in line for his next batch)