Why do grapes get all the glory when it comes to wine? Sure, nothing beats a good South African wine or a bottle of bubbly from France, but what about the lesser known cousins of the famous beverage. How about pineapple, blueberry or cherry?
1. Blueberry wine
Known as Lappish Love Potion, this Finnish wine is made using fermented blueberries. The process is said to be quite labour intensive which is why the wine isn’t mass produced on a global market, but it does have a substantial fan base. There are many recipes which explain the process of making it yourself at home and it is relatively simple, containing nothing more than blueberries, water and sugar. The clear red drink tastes like raspberries and is said to pair well with desserts as it is quite sweet.
2. Pineapple wine
This beverage has about an 11 percent alcohol volume and is predominantly produced in Hawaii and Japan using fermented pineapple juice. Often mistaken as a dessert wine because of its implied sweetness, this beverage tastes more like a dry white wine and goes great with meals of ham or pizza and even chocolate. It can also be served in a glass with pieces of chilled, fresh pineapple to enhance the flavor. Anyone who enjoys tropical flavours will enjoy this wine.
3. Dandelion wine
Some consider them weeds, but the common dandelion flower can easily be made into a great drink with a low alcohol level. This interesting concoction can be made at home using whole dandelion petals, yeast and a variety of fruits like lemon peel, orange juice or ginger. The fermented wine apparently tastes better with age and can be bottled for up to a year before being drunk. Serve it with a fresh summer salad or a baked fish dish.
4. Redcurrant wine
A high quality wine predominantly produced in cooler areas that have trouble growing grapes, redcurrant wine takes patience to make and needs to be aged properly before being served, as it tends to mellow into a better tasting wine with time. The ruby red wine is said to have a tart flavor and if not made correctly, can be quite high in acidity. Find a recipe that suits you and get started today to enjoy it in a year.
5. Cherry wine
Also known as Kijafa, this Finnish wine is manufactured in the country but can be bought online. There are ways to make it at home, however, and as with most other fruit wines, you simply need a reputable recipe. It is described as cider-tasting and has a bright cherry colour with a rich aftertaste. Enjoy it on the rocks.
Others have experimented with a host of other fruits to make wine with and there are literally hundreds to choose from, some available to buy and others which you can easily make at home. The best thing to do is experiment and design a wine that suits your tastes – getting suitably sloshed in the process is half the fun.