According the latest and greatest of my blogging schedules, today is meant to be Writing Wednesday during which I share with you my writing world, offer up writing advice, or present some other writerly type of babble.
Unfortunately, this week, other than plodding my way through the second draft of The Maze (the third book in my Osteria Chronicles series), there’s just not much going on in my literary life. However, there has been an exciting event in another realm of my existence, so instead of Writing Wednesday, I’m taking a turn for the boozier and making this Wine Wednesday.
As you may remember, a few months ago I thought I’d make use of my garden’s overabundance of grapes by trying my hand at winemaking (if not, read all about it here). Since winemaking instructions tend to be either completely vague or overly technical and since I only had enough grapes for one batch of wine, I decided not to waste my juicy little orbs on my first attempt at being a vintner.
Instead, I bought some pears from the local greengrocer for my first gallon of Dionysian wonder. Cobbling together the few instructions that made any amount of sense, I managed to get through all the many stages of fermentation, transferred the wine into a jug for more fermentation, transferred it again and again to keep it pretty, and then waited and waited and waited.
Three months had finally passed and I figured Baby was grown up enough to move out of its jug and be separated into bottles. I don’t know how my wine felt about it, but I was scared. My tastings during each transfer (not always voluntary as I am a bit of a spaz with getting the siphon started) revealed that the stuff was turning out REALLY good. What if I contaminate it when I put it into the bottle? What if the bottles explode and I lose all my wine? What if the corks rot and ruin my batch of boozey goodness?
I read some more about the bottling process – again cobbling together information from instructions that ranged from lackadaisical simplicity to rocket-science complexity. None of this made me feel any better about the process, but it had to be done at some point. I cleaned my bottles, bleached them, and then cleaned them a couple more times just for good measure. I gave my corker a test run and figured I might as well go for it.
The bottling went surprisingly smoothly. And let me tell you, hammering fat corks into a narrow bottle neck is a great way to work off your frustrations…although I think I did scare the cats with all the pounding.
It’s been a little over a week since bottling day and, so far, none of the bottles have exploded. They’ve now been turned on to their sides and are living in a chilly corner of my bedroom. It will be another three months of waiting before the final taste test. In the meantime, I’ll have to create some snazzy labels (a possible Sketchbook Saturday idea!).
I also need to get busy drinking some store-bought vino to create some empty containers for my grape wine that is now waiting its turn to be bottled. Put that on the To-Do List!
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TAMMIE PAINTER IS THE AUTHOR OF THE TRIALS OF HERCULES: BOOK ONE OF THE OSTERIA CHRONICLES AND AN ARTIST WHO DEDICATES HERSELF TO THE TEDIUM OF CREATING IMAGES WITH COLORED PENCIL. YOU CAN FIND HER WORK AT TAMMIE PAINTER’S BOOKSTORE & GALLERY.