Isn’t cherry wine is supposed to be red?
I mentioned white cherry wine in passing here, but most people think of cherry wine as a red. The only commercial cherry wine I’ve tried is a red – crushed, fermented on the skins, then pressed. Every recipe I’ve seen involves either fermenting on the skins or fermenting red juice. When I first made cherry wine, last year, I wanted to make it like a conventional grape wine rather than a “country wine” (4-6 lb of fruit per gallon, with added water, sugar, and acid). I made a red cherry wine. In fact, it never occurred to me that I might make a white.
So why a white cherry wine?
There’s a story about white Zinfandel, and how difficult it was to get it accepted. Reviewers reviewed harshly and judges judged skeptically because everyone knew than Zinfandel was supposed to be red. Eventually this new white was judged on it merits and has become a popular wine. Now, I’m not sure if this story is actually true (anyone out there know?), and I don’t even drink white Zin, but why not a white cherry?
How do you make white cherry wine?
Two of the cherry trees I grow, Montmorency and White Gold, will produce fruit with clear juice. I was looking for that specifically, because I wanted to make white wine from them. The idea is to keep the process as close as possible to a conventional white wine from grapes. Crush and press the fruit, adjust the sugar and acidity of the juice, then pitch the yeast. I’m open to diluting with water if the acidity is too high, but I’m hoping that won’t be necessary. I’m also willing to be flexible about what “too high” is. If the acid profile looks like Riesling, I may just treat it like one rather than “correct” it to more normal levels. If I get enough fruit from each tree, I’d like to ferment them separately. That way I can see how each tastes on its own, then try different blends. Plenty of ideas, not enough cherries!
Was this helpful?
If you got something out of this article, why not spread the word? You can click any of the icons below to give this page a +1 or share it on your favorite social media. Everyone likes a pat on the back - even me!