As much as I try to carefully document my wine work, every now and then I get some surprises. Such a one came Monday.
I saw in my planner that I needed to rack a couple of batches of last spring’s birch wine and check them for possible bottling. According to the recipe I use, birch wine started in March and April should be ready to bottle by August. For that reason, I grew curious why I had scheduled these two particular batches, even though I had done nothing with the ones that came before.
A quick review of the wine diary showed me that I’d missed scheduling some of the previous batches. So, that rainy morning, I discovered I had five gallons of birch wine to rack and bottle!
It took longer than usual to finish the job, but it was well worth it. I have to say, these batches are nearly perfect. I tasted each one and found it ready to bottle. They all proved delicious, even the last in line, which was noticeably drier than the others. To remedy that, and even out the batches, I combined them and bottled them all as one batch, now officially recorded as Birch Wine 2016.
I feel like a rich man! Our birch wines are among the best we make. We’ll enjoy them through the autumn and winter. With this many batches combined to one, and another 3 gallons to be racked, tested, and, I assume, bottled at the end of this week, we may even have some to fortify us as we begin tapping the trees again next spring.