Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Strawberry Wine

I've been making wine for 4 years now and every year I try to make a new kind.  Each year I make wine berry wine from berries James picks back in the Jefferson National Forest behind our cabin.  I think the second year I added a blackberry wine, then paw paw.  Last year I tried my hand at beet wine and yes, it was very good - and gone, I might add.  Yesterday and today James picked 17 lbs of strawberries so I can make 5 gallons of strawberry wine.  I'm kind of surprised I haven't tried it before because he grows strawberries every year.  Maybe he was just too tired of freezing them or making them into jam.  He isn't much of a wine drinker so you might appreciate how generous it is that he grows and picks the fruit so I can make wine.  He even removed most of the stems for me.  I think it's going to be good.  I'm definitely going to make beet wine again this year.   If our orchard produces well maybe I'll make some peach or apple wine.  I did attempt pear one year and it was probably my least favorite.  At least I only made one gallon of it.

On a more sobering note.  Today I had to put down our rooster.  Remember he was attacked along with 5 hens a week ago.  I've been keeping him in his coop till he recovered.  He had begun crowing again a few days ago and seemed interested in going outdoors so this morning I opened the door for him.  He stood proud in the doorway, flapped his wings and then did a somersault onto the ground.  He quickly recovered.  I had decided today that I was going to name him Stevie after Stevie Wonder because he swayed back and forth like him.  He pretty much stayed in one spot but I saw him nibbling on some oats I threw on the ground for him.

I had errands to run today and was gone for several hours.  When I got home I saw Stevie standing close to the same spot I left him.  I got a camera so I could video him for my blog tonight and announce his name.  I was sickened to find him missing all the feathers on the top of his head, his eyes damaged and flies flying around his face.  He still stood and swayed.  I'm pretty sure The Imposter (our newer rooster) attacked him.  I was sad and wished I had kept him in the coop but I kind of had a feeling he wasn't ever going to fully recover. 

I cried just a little bit as I buried him and pondered why I tried nursing this rooster back to health and felt sad about losing him when just Saturday I butchered 4 others to put in our freezer. 

I said goodbye to Stevie, told him he had been a good rooster, washed my hands and poured myself a glass of store bought wine. 

1 comment:

  1. Any chance of you doing a post on how you make your wine? Perhaps you have done one already, but I just started following and haven't had the chance to go through old posts yet. Goodness knows, we have enough blackberries on our property.

    Sorry about your roo. We just identified our first roo (we think) and the next day he started limping. It's his 3rd day of injury, and we finally brought him inside in the hopes of nursing him back to health. We were just talking, too, about how any roo would likely be named Stewpot. If this guy (we think) makes it, I don't know if I'll be able to surrender him. I know I'll be very sad if his condition goes downhill.