Wine Recipes c.1803

Celebrating National Wine day.

Wine Recipes of the Early 1800s.

Happy National Wine Day! This post is completely self-serving. It’s a way for me to index a very curious list of wine recipes to be able to easily go back and check them out later.

Let’s dissect:

Gooseberry Wine was popular because it was the closest to tasting like an actual wine made using vinis vinifera, same goes for raisin wine and orange wine with raisin, which **should** turn out something like a nice sherry. I hope. There are 3 gallons of this sitting in my kitchen fermenting away – and I’ll know in about 8 months how they turn out.

Balm wine, birch wine, mountain wine, and shrub wine are curious oddities. I’m not sure about trying out these recipes. There’s some tickle in the back of my mind about a few of these recipes being toxic – anyone know about this? Maybe I’m making it up…

All of these wines would have been consumed immediately after making them. The lady of the working-class house (or butler, if it were a large house) would have been charged with making wines and ensuring there were sufficient wines for the household. I’m totally behind this chore, as long as I can delegate dishes and laundry.

We know that this book pre-dates the hydrometer that allowed for more precise measurement and regulation of fermentation. The process would be to add fruit, sugar, and water to a large crock and cover it with a cloth. After a week or so, that would be poured into a barrel – or another large crock – and bunged up. It would magically transform in about 6 months into something alcoholic.

Not a lot of exactitude here.

Which is why I’m particularly interested in the last three entries: To recover wine; To fine wine; To clear wine.

Curious to read more?

Check out a link to the book here.

(There’s the whole preserving/pickling section, too – also fun to explore.)

More Fun Discoveries from Antique Cookbooks


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