San Antonio Regional Wine Guild
Our Recipes

Dedicated to wine appreciation and amateur winemaking


SARWG differs from many winemaking clubs. Our members share their recipes. Here are a few worth printing out for further reference.

Best of Show (Medina County Fair)
White Niagara Wine

by Bob Wehner

For three gallons
  • 7 large cans Welch's 100% White Grape Juice Concentrate
  • 5 lb. granulated sugar
  • 2 Tblsp acid blend
  • 5 qts water
  • 2 1/4 tsp powdered pectic enzyme
  • 1 Tblsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 sachet Champagne wine yeast

Add sugar to 5 qts boiling water, remove from heat and stir to dissolve sugar. Let cool. Add all ingredients except yeast to 5-gallon carboy. After 24 hours, add yeast to 1/2 cup warm water and let set 15 minutes. Stir well and add to carboy. After about 10 days, rack into 3-gallon carboy and attach airlock. Rack wine three times in eight weeks adding 2 1/4 tsp pectic enzyme each racking. When wine is clear and no longer dropping sediments, add 1/4 tsp potassium sorbate and 5 tsp Glycerin per gallon. Bulk age two months and bottle. [Bob Wehner's recipe]

Best of Show (Kerr County Fair)
Pomegranate Dessert Wine

by Jack Keller

For five gallons
  • 1 gallon juice from fresh pomegranates
  • 2? lb. barley
  • 12 lb. granulated sugar
  • 4 lemons, juiced
  • 5 Valencia oranges, juiced
  • 3? gal. water
  • 2? tsp. yeast nutrient
  • 2 sachets Burgundy wine yeast

I began with one gallon of pomegranate juice from fresh fruit. Bring 1 gallon water to boil with the barley in it. Simmer for about 5 minutes, then strain into the primary with the pomegranate juice, sugar, and juice of the citrus. Stir well to dissolve sugar and add remaining water. When cool (70-75 degrees F.), add the nutrient and stir. Beginning specific gravity was 1.115. Add yeast starter. Cover and ferment until s.g. drops to 1.050, then transfer to secondary (do not top up) and fit with airlock. When fermentation slows, top up. Rack every 45 days, topping up and reattaching the airlock. When wine clears and fermentation has stopped of its own accord, rack and stabilize. Set aside 45 days, rack and sweeten to s.g. 1.030 with simple syrup (2 parts sugar dissolved in 1 part water). Reattach airlock and bulk age 1 year, checking fluid in airlock periodically. Rack into bottles and age another year. [Jack Keller's own recipe]

Best of Show Mango Sweet Wine

by Jack Keller

For three gallons
  • 25 small, fresh, ripe mangos
  • 6 11.5 oz cans Welch's 100% White Grape frozen concentrate
  • 2? lbs fine granulated sugar
  • 3 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 2 tsp citric acid
  • ? tsp grape tannin
  • 3 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 6 crushed Campden tablets
  • water to 3 gallons
  • 2 pkg C?te des Blancs wine yeast

Peeled and diced mangos, put in nylon straining bag and tied closed. In primary, squeezed mangos. Added frozen white grape concentrate, pectic enzyme, tannin, citric acid, yeast nutrient, and water to 2 gallons 7 pints. Measured specific gravity and calculated sugar to bring s.g. to 1.095. Stirred two minutes to dissolve sugar. Covered and set aside overnight. Added activated yeast. Stirred daily, squeezing bag, until s.g. dropped to 1.015 (9 days). Drip drained bag and squeezed pulp dry. Transferred to secondary and fitted airlock. After three days topped up secondary. After 30 days, racked into clean secondary containing three crushed Campden tablets, topped up and refitted airlock. Racked, topped up and refitted airlock each 60 days for six months (added 3 crushed Campden tablets during 3rd racking). Stabilized, drew off one gallon for sweetening, bottled remaining two gallons dry. Sweetened third gallon with 3? tablespoons sugar, stirred, refitted airlock, waited two weeks to watch for refermentation, then bottled.

Best of Show Sparkling Peach Wine

by Susie Higgins

For five gallons
  • 15 lbs fresh ripe peaches
  • 1 qt white grape concentrate
  • 8 lbs granulated sugar
  • 6 tsp Vinacid
  • 6 qts hot water
  • 2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1 tsp liquid tannin
  • 9 crushed Campden tablets
  • 7 qts cold water
  • Bentonite finings
  • 1/4 tsp sulphite crystals
  • 9 oz wine conditioner
  • 2 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 pkg Champagne yeast

Halve the peaches and remove the stones. Place the peach halves and white grape concentrate in primary. Add hot water, sugar and Vinacid. Stir well to dissolve sugar. Add yeast nutrient, pectic enzyme, liquid tannin, crushed Campden tablets, and cold water. Check specific gravity to ensure it has reached 1.095. Prepare yeast starter in separate container. Wait 24 hours and add yeast to primary. Cover and stir twice daily. When S.G. drops to 1.020, scoop peach halves into nylon straining bag and gently squeeze juice from pulp. Discard pulp. Siphon off sediments into sterilized seconday, top up and fit airlock. When S.G. reaches 1.000 or after 10th day in secondary, whichever comes first, rack, top up and refit airlock. After three weeks or when S.G. drops below 0.095, rack again and top up. Add Bentonite finings, refit airlock and allow to sit 10 days. Filter into clean secondary. Add 1/4 tsp sulphite crystals dissolved in 1/2 cup water. Finish topping up and refit airlock. After 30 days rack into primary, add 1/2 cup priming sugar, stir to dissolve, and bottle in champagne bottles, wiring corks. Wine will ferment in bottle with CO2 being absorbed into wine. Sediment formed in bottles may be left or drawn off using one of several methods described elsewhere for doing so.

Best of Show Blackberry Wine

by Russell Maxwell

For one gallon
  • 5 lbs frozen blackberries
  • 7 pts water
  • 2-1/4 lbs granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp acid blend
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 pkg Champagne yeast

Thaw and mash the berries into the primary and add the remaining ingredients. After 5 days, rack the juice into the secondary and press the pulp in a nylon straining bag to extract more. Fit airlock, wait two months, and rack again into a gallon glass jug you can seal. Taste for sweetness. Add about 1/4 cup of sugar for a sweeter wine. Refit airlock and check it daily. When you're sure fermentation has stopped, seal the jug and let the wine age another two months. Rack into bottles.

Russell buys his berries at the HEB frozen foods department. He says the quality is really good and he has won a lot of home wine awards using it.

Best of Show Cherry Wine

by Tom Wells

For two gallons
  • 3 16-oz cans "Oregon" Bing Cherries (pitted)
  • 1 qt Black Cherry Juice (unsweetened)
  • 3 qts water
  • 5 lbs honey
  • 1 tsp acid blend
  • 1 tsp tannin
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 pkg wine yeast

Heat water, add honey, bring to boil. Put cherries in nylon straining bag in primary and pour boiling honey-water over bag. When cooled to room temperature, add all remaining ingredients except yeast. Wait 12 hours for pectic enzyme to activate, then add yeast. After 5 or 6 days, rack the juice into the secondary and press the pulp in nylon straining bag to extract more. Add extracted juice to secondary and fit airlock. Rack when wine clears, and taste every two weeks until you think it ready. Then rack again into bottles.

This is a dry wine, beginning S.G. 1.095 and Brix 23.5 and ending S.G. 0.990 and Brix 0. If you want a sweeter wine, stabilize after final racking, sweeten to taste (with sugar-water), wait 7-10 days, then bottle.

Atascosa County Fair Grand Champion
White Mustang (Sweet)

by Jack Keller

For 3 gallons:

  • 28 lbs Black Mustang Grapes
  • 3-1/2 lbs invert sugar*
  • 1 tsp pectic enzyme
  • water to raise volume to 3 gallon
  • 2-1/2 tsp yeast nutrient
  • Lalvin 71B-1122 (Narbonne) yeast

Grapes were picked at height of ripeness (solid black, plump and juicy), washed, drained and destemmed. Each grape was then squeezed between thumb and forefinger until pulp and free juice were expelled into bowl (yes, this took about two hours). Pulp was pressed and juice evaluated. Specific gravity was exactly 1.050, total acid was 1.15%, pH was 3.4. Invert sugar* and water were added to bring volume to three gallons. Both TA and pH vastly improved and s.g. elevated to 1.094. Yeast nutrient and pectic enzyme added and volume transferred to secondary, which was covered with a paper towel held by rubber band. After 12 hours, activated yeast was added and secondary recovered. Fermented for 12 days and racked at s.g. 1.012. Airlock installed and wine set in cool cabinet. After 60 days, fermentation was complete. Bentonite added. Two weeks later gelatin was added. After 30 days, wine was brilliant and racked for bulk aging. At four months aging, wine was stabilized and one drop of tannin added. Ten days later one gallon was bottled dry, one gallon sweetened to 1.002 (bottled as a semi-sec) and the remaining gallon sweetened to 1.008 and bottled. The dry won 2nd place in the SARWG Fall Competition and the sweet won the Atascosa County Grand Champion. The semi-sec has not yet seen competition.

* Invert sugar is made by mixing two parts sugar to one part water, adding two teaspoons lemon juice per pound of sugar. This is brought almost to a boil and held there for 30 minutes (do NOT allow to boil). This is poured into sealable jar, sealed and cooled in refrigerator. This process hydrolizes sucrose into glucose and fructose and speeds fermentation. Invert sugar should NOT be used to sweeten finished wine as it will encourage refermentation.

Best of Show Black Raspberry Wine

by Jack Keller

for one gallon
  • 4 lbs black raspberries
  • 1 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 2 lbs sugar
  • 7 pts water
  • 1 crushed Campden tablet
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 pkg Cote des Blancs yeast

Pick only ripe berries. Combine water and sugar and put on to boil, stirring occasionally. Wash and destem berries. Put in nylon straining bag, tie, put in botton of primary, and crush berries in bag. Pour boiling sugar-water over berries to set the color and extract the flavorful juice. Add acid blend and yeast nutrient. Allow to cool to 70 degrees F. and add crushed Campden tablet. Cover primary with plastic wrap secured with a large rubber band. After 12 hours, add pectic enzyme. After additional 12 hours, specific gravity measured 1.092. Add wine yeast and resecure plastic wrap. Stir daily for a week, replacing plastic wrap if it looks like it needs it. Remove nylon bag and allow to drip drain about an hour, keeping primary covered as before. Do not squeeze bag. Return drippings to primary. Continue fermentation in primary until specific gravity falls below 1.015, stirring daily. Rack to secondary, top up with water and fit airlock. Use a dark secondary or wrap with brown paper (from paper bag) to preserve color. Ferment additional 2 months, then rack into clean secondary. Refit airlock and rack again after additional 2 months. Wait a final 2 months, rack again and stabilze wine. Stir in 1/2 cup sugar and refit airlock. After 10-14 days, bottle in dark glass. Drink after one year. This is an excellent sweet wine, but you must ferment the full 6 months and age another year.

Best of Class (Novelty) Jamaica Blossom Wine

by Jack Keller

for one gallon
  • 1/4 lb dried jamaica blossoms
  • 2-1/2 lbs sugar
  • 7 pts water
  • 1-1/2 tsp acid blend
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 pkg Cote des Blancs yeast

Jamaica blossoms are Mexican red hibiscus. Dried whole flowers are available at the H.E.B. grocery chain in south Texas and are used to make a delicious tea. Combine water and sugar and put on to boil, stirring occasionally until sugar is dissolved. Tie flowers in nylon straining bag and put in primary. Pour boiling sugar-water over flowers and stir in all ingredients except yeast. Cover primary until water cools to room temperature. Squeeze flowers to extract maximum flavor and then discard flowers or use for tea. Add activated yeast, recover primary, and stir daily until active fermentation dies down (7-8 days). Rack to secondary, top up with water and fit airlock. Ferment 30 days then rack into clean secondary. Refit airlock and rack again after additional 30 days. Wait a final 2 months, rack again and stabilze wine. After 10-14 days, bottle in dark glass. May drink immediately, but improves in six months.

Pear Wine

by Charlie Suehs

For one gallon
  • 4 lbs pears
  • 6 pts water
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 2-1/2 tsp acid blend
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 1 crushed Campden tablet
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 pkg wine yeast

Wash pears, cut in half and remove core, and cut into smaller pieces. Press through nylon straining bag to remove juice, tie bag and place in primary. Add remaining ingredients except yeast and stir well to dissolve sugar. Cover and add yeast after 24 hours. Recover and stir daily. When S.G. drops to 1.040, siphon juice into secondary. Squeeze pulp to extract all juice and add to secondary. Fit airlock. Check S.G. in three weeks. When 1.000 or below, siphon into clean secondary and refit airlock. Rack every two months until wine clears. If it doesn't clear by sixth month, bottle it anyway (or use fining). The taste is so good that a little cloudiness is worth it.

Lomanto Grape Wine

by Greg Howard

for 5 gallons
  • 35-40 lbs destemmed Lomanto grapes
  • 3 gal water
  • 4 tbsp pectic enzyme
  • 5 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 tsp yeast energizer
  • 4 crushed Campden tablets
  • 1 pkg Champagne yeast

Grapes are picked when fully ripe, washed, destemmed, and crushed. I put grapes in gallon freezer bags for one month to aid in breakdown from solids to liquids and obtain additional color. Place grapes in fermentor bag and add all ingredients except yeast to primary. Use hydrometer to determine sugar required to attain 12.5% alcohol (this should yield a finished wine of 12% alcohol after losses due to racking). Add sugar and stir well to dissolve. Cover primary and add yeast after 24 hours. Stir at least twice a day (the more the better). Check the S.G. after a few days. When S.G. reaches 1.015 or less, remove the fermentor bag, squeezing to extract liquid. Siphon into secondary when S.G. drops to 1.000. Rack as deposits form. I normally rack my wines 6 to 9 times before bottling. If you have a filter this is not required. Oak chips (White Oak only) can be added during the aging process. Stabilize and sweeten to taste before bottling.

Watermelon-Peach Wine

by Jack Keller

for one gallon
  • 1/4 large watermelon
  • 2 peaches
  • 1/4 cup chopped golden raisins
  • 3 limes (juice only)
  • 5 cups sugar
  • water to make 1 gallon
  • 1 tsp acid blend
  • 1 crushed Campden tablet
  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 pkg wine yeast

Extract the juice from watermelon and peaches, saving pulp. Boil pulp in one quart water for 1/2 hour then strain and add water to extracted juice. Allow to cool to lukewarm then add water to make one gallon total and all other ingredients except yeast to primary fermentation vessel. Cover well with cloth and add yeast after 24 hours. Stir daily for 1 week and strain off raisins. Let stand additional 24 hours and rack. Pour into secondary fermentation vessel, fit fermentation trap, and set aside for 4 weeks. Rack and set aside another 4 weeks, then rack again. Allow to clear, then rack final time and bottle. Allow 6 months before tasting, but improves with age

Grapefruit Wine

by Dorothy Alatorre

for one gallon
  • 6 grapefruit
  • 3-1/2 quarts water peaches
  • 2-1/4 lbs granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp tannin
  • 1 crushed Campden tablet
  • 1 pkg Champagne yeast

Slice the grapefruit into quarters and crush. Strain the juice into the primary fermenter. Save the pulp and place in a nylon straining bag. Tie bag and place in primary. Add all other ingredients except yeast. Cover primary, wait 24 hours, add yeast. Check it daily and press the pulp to slightly to aid extracting juice. In 5 days press pulp ona more time and rack wine off sediments into a glass secondary fermenter. Fit airlock. Rack every 3-4 weeks as needed. It may be ready to drink in 2-3 months. Taste to see if the balance is right. If it needs sweetening, ass 1/2 tsp of stabilizer, then 1/4 lb sugar. Wait a few days and taste again. If balance is right, bottle it.

Elderberry Wine

by Richard LaVigne

for five gallons
  • 12 oz dried elderberries
  • 1 lb muscat raisins
  • 3 lb dark raisins
  • 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme
  • 10 lbs sugar
  • 5-1/2 tsp acid blend
  • 5 gallons water
  • 1 tsp acid blend
  • 3 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 pkg wine yeast

Mix all ingredients into primary fermenter. After 5-6 days, rack to a 5-gallon carboy and strain the fruit through a mesh bag and squeeze well. Discard pulp. Check it every week and keep adding a cup of sugar a week until the fermentation stops. Then stabilize, sweeten and adjust acid to taste.

Strawberry Wine

by Duane Howard

for six gallons
  • 37-40 lbs strawberries
  • 3-1/2 tblsp pectic enzyme
  • 14 lbs sugar
  • 3 gallons water
  • 6 crushed Campden tablets
  • 6 tsp yeast nutrient
  • 1 tsp yeast energizer
  • 1 pkg Champagne yeast

Freeze the strawberries for 3-7 days. Thaw in sterilized ice chest or other appropriate container. When thawed, remove green tops and crush by hand. Place strawberries in nylon mesh bag, add water and crushed Campden tablets. Let sit 24 hours, then add remaining ingredients, using a hydrometer to add correct amount of sugar to produce 12.5% alcohol. This will produce a finished wine of 12%. Stir at least twice a day. Check specific gravity after a few days and revove strawberries when S.G. is 1.015 or less. When S.G. reaches 1.000, remove balance of liquid to secondary fermenter. Rack as pulp and yeast form sediments (once a week for first four weeks, then once a month thereafter. When wine clears, rack final time, add stabilizer, and bottle without sweetening. This is a dry wine.

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This page was updated February 6th, 2007 by
SARWG's appointed webmaster, Jack Keller

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