From Raisin to Wine: Making of this Ancient Beverage - Wine by hearts
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From Raisin to Wine: Making of this Ancient Beverage

Are you a wine lover, but tired of the same old grapes and flavors? Well, have you ever tried wine made from raisins? Yes, you read that right! Raisin wine is a unique and delicious alternative to traditional grape wines.

Not only does it offer a new taste experience, but it’s also incredibly easy to make at home. In this blog post, we’ll explore the process of making raisin wine and share tips on how to achieve the perfect flavor profile.

So, grab your favorite glass and get ready for an exciting journey into the world of wine from raisins.


a pile of raisins on a white surface

Wine can be made from a variety of fruits, including grapes, but it is also possible to make wine from raisins.

Raisins are dried grapes, and while they do not have the same level of water content as fresh grapes, they still contain enough natural sugars and nutrients to ferment into wine.

To make wine from raisins, the first step is to soak them in water to rehydrate them. After they have soaked for a few hours, the raisins are mashed or blended into a pulp, and then combined with additional water, yeast, and sugar to start the fermentation process.

During fermentation, the yeast consumes the sugars in the raisin pulp, producing alcohol and carbon dioxide. The wine is left to ferment for a few weeks, after which it is racked (transferred to a new container, leaving behind any sediment), and then aged for several months to improve its flavor and texture.

The resulting wine made from raisins can vary in flavor and body depending on the specific type of raisins used and the fermentation process. It can be enjoyed on its own or used as a base for cocktails and mixed drinks.

History of Wine from Raisins.

selective focus photography of blackberry fruit during daytime wine from Raisins

The history of raisin wine can be traced back to ancient times. The Greeks and Romans were known to make sweet wines by drying grapes in the sun before crushing and fermenting them. In fact, the name “passito” comes from the Italian word “passare,” which means “to pass” or “to dry.”

The technique of drying grapes to make wine was also practiced in many other regions around the world, including Spain, Portugal, France, and the Middle East.

In some regions, the dried grapes were pressed immediately after drying, while in others, the grapes were soaked in water to rehydrate them before pressing.

During the Middle Ages, raisin wine became popular in Europe, particularly in France and Italy. The wine was often made from white grapes, and the drying process was typically done on straw mats or racks, as it is today.

In the 19th century, the phylloxera epidemic devastated vineyards across Europe, causing many winemakers to switch to other crops.

However, the tradition of making raisin wine persisted, and today, it is still produced in many regions around the world, including Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, and the United States.

Raisin wine continues to be a highly prized product, with a rich history and a unique flavor profile. The labor-intensive process of making this wine has been passed down from generation to generation, ensuring that this ancient winemaking tradition continues to thrive.

What You’ll Need To Make Raisin Wine Raisin wines?

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To make raisin wine, you will need the following equipment and ingredients:


  • Raisins: Use high-quality, fresh raisins with no added preservatives. The amount of raisins you need will depend on the size of your batch of wine, but generally, you will need around 3-4 pounds of raisins for each gallon of wine.
  • Fermentation vessel: This can be a food-grade plastic bucket, a glass carboy, or a stainless steel tank, depending on your preference.
  • Airlock: This is a device that allows carbon dioxide to escape from the fermentation vessel while preventing air from entering.
  • Yeast: Use a wine yeast strain that is suitable for the type of wine you want to make.
  • Hydrometer: This is a tool used to measure the specific gravity of the wine during fermentation, which can help you determine when the wine is finished.
  • Siphon hose: This is used to transfer the wine from one vessel to another.
  • Bottles: Choose dark-colored bottles to protect the wine from light damage.
  • Corks or screw caps: Choose closures that are appropriate for the type of bottle you are using.

The main ingredient you’ll need to make raisin wine is, of course, raisins. Here’s a list of the basic ingredients you’ll need:

Dried grapes (raisins)

Optionally, you may also want to add sugar to increase the alcohol content of the wine, or acid blend to adjust the acidity level. Some recipes may also call for tannin or other additives to enhance the flavor and body of the wine.

It’s important to note that the specific quantities of each ingredient will depend on the recipe you’re using, as well as your personal preferences and the desired final characteristics of the wine.

For example, the amount of sugar you add will affect the alcohol content and sweetness of the wine, while the type of yeast you choose can influence the aroma and flavor profile.

Before you start making raisin wine, be sure to carefully read and follow a reliable recipe. It’s also important to sanitize all of your equipment thoroughly to prevent any contamination that could spoil the wine.

With a bit of patience and attention to detail, you can make a delicious and unique wine that showcases the rich, concentrated flavors of raisins.

How to make wine from raisins?

wine from raisins, bottle of wine, red wine

Wine from raisins, also known as “passito” or “straw wine,” is made from grapes that have been dried, typically on straw mats or racks, to concentrate their sugars and flavors. The technique used in making raisin wine involves several steps:

Clean and sanitize all equipment.

Thoroughly clean all equipment that will come into contact with the wine, such as the fermentation vessel, airlock, and stirring spoon.

Use a food-grade sanitizer or a solution of water and bleach to sanitize everything. Rinse thoroughly with clean water and allow to air dry.

Grape selection.

The winemaker chooses the best quality grapes, often from specific vineyards or regions, that are suitable for raisin wine production. The grapes are typically left on the vine longer to allow for more sugar concentration before they are harvested.

Soak the raisins.

Soak the raisins in warm water for several hours or overnight to rehydrate them. Drain off the water and rinse the raisins.

Boil the water.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then remove from heat.

Add sugar (optional).

Add the raisins and sugar (if using) to the hot water and stir until the sugar dissolves.

Cool the mixture.

Allow the mixture to cool to room temperature.

Transfer to a fermentation vessel.

Using a funnel, transfer the raisin mixture to a clean and sanitized fermentation vessel, leaving a few inches of headspace at the top.

Add yeast.

Sprinkle the yeast over the surface of the raisin mixture and stir well.

Seal the fermentation vessel.

Attach an airlock and bung, or a lid with a one-way valve, to the fermentation vessel to allow carbon dioxide to escape during fermentation.

Ferment the wine.

Place the fermentation vessel in a cool, dark place and allow the wine to ferment for several weeks to several months, depending on the recipe and desired characteristics of the wine. Monitor the wine regularly to ensure that the fermentation is proceeding smoothly.

Rack the wine.

After fermentation is complete, rack the wine by siphoning it into a clean and sanitized secondary fermentation vessel. This will help to clarify the wine and remove any sediment or debris.

Let it age.

The wine should then be left to age, in order to develop its flavor and aroma. The aging process can take several months to several years, depending on the style of the wine.

Bottle the wine.

When the wine has aged to your liking, use a siphon hose to transfer it into clean and sanitized bottles. Cork or cap the bottles and store them in a cool, dark place until ready to enjoy.

Raisin wine is typically a sweet dessert wine with a rich, concentrated flavor profile. The technique used in making this wine requires careful attention to detail and a long, labor-intensive process, resulting in a unique and highly prized product.

Wine made from Raisins.

Wine from raisins

Raisin wine, also known as “passito” wine, is made by drying grapes, which concentrates the sugars and flavors, and then fermenting the resulting raisins to produce a rich, sweet wine.

There are many different types of raisin wines, each with its own unique characteristics and flavors. Here are some of the best types of raisin wine to try:

Vin santo’s raisin d’etre.

A traditional Italian dessert wine made from Trebbiano and Malvasia grapes that have been dried for several months. Vin Santo has a rich, nutty flavor and is often served with biscotti.

Recioto della Valpolicella.

A sweet red wine from the Valpolicella region of Italy made from dried Corvina, Rondinella, and Molinara grapes. It has a deep, ruby color and a complex flavor profile that includes notes of cherry, chocolate, and spice.

Amarone della Valpolicella.

It is a dry red wine made from a blend of Corvina, Rondinella, and Molinara grapes that have been dried on straw mats or racks for several months to concentrate their sugars and flavors.

Amarone is known for its rich, full-bodied character, with flavors of dried fruit, chocolate, and spices. It is often described as having a “raisiny” or “pruney” taste, due to the concentration of sugars from the dried grapes.

Tokaji Aszu.

A sweet Hungarian dessert wine made from Furmint, Hárslevelű, and Muscat grapes that have been affected by botrytis, a type of fungus that concentrates the sugars in the grapes. Tokaji Aszu has a honeyed flavor with notes of apricot, peach, and spice.

Rutherglen Muscat.

A fortified dessert wine from Australia made from Muscat grapes that have been partially dried before fermentation. It has a rich, caramelized flavor with notes of raisin, toffee, and orange peel.


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Making wine from raisins is a great way to make your own homemade alcoholic beverage. The process is simple and straightforward, and it doesn’t require any specialized equipment or ingredients that are hard to find.

You can also customize the taste of your homemade wine by adding different herbs, spices, fruits, or other flavorings to the must.

Whether you’re looking for an interesting hobby or a unique addition to your next dinner party menu, making wine from raisins is a fun and rewarding experience that anyone can enjoy.

Thank you for reading.