What Vintners Do

They make wine, of course. Well, they don’t just “make” wine, they produce a unique product spawned by their love of the art and curiosity. We were fortunate to know someone who had a prolific pear tree and welcomed others to take pears off of his hands…and his lawn. Three of us went to load up on the bounty. We spent about an hour or so knocking pears out of the tree and then picking them up off the ground. Some were usable, some were not. I came home with around six bags and buckets of pears.

Last year we made pear wine from the fruit of the same pear tree. We, I should say Deacon (he’s the vintner). I am the helper. We did a small batch that produced around six bottles. Summer of this  year we popped open a bottle to try it out. This was the first attempt at Pear wine. It was surprisingly wonderful! A dry, fruity wine, much like a Chardonnay. This was exciting.

Pear Wine 2014

We had an abundance of pears…more than enough to produce 24 bottles of wine. This year the vintner wanted to experiment. In a small batch he added Sumac berries which grow wild on our property and were harvested about the same time. He produced three batches of Pear and Pear Sumac in all using different yeasts as well. We peeled, cored, and chopped pears for what seemed like hours. It’s messy business.


The exciting stuff is the fermentation. The house fills with the aroma of fermenting pears and we anticipate the final product. It ferments for several weeks before being bottled.


Bottling is the fun part. Of course we taste each batch along the way. We were not terribly impressed with the Pear Sumac. The second batch was mediocre but the third one was excellent already. It will be interesting to see how they change after aging for six months.

We have a lot of fun with wine making but this time we decided to take it a tad more seriously by documenting the process. We created batch numbers and labels which indicate the type of wine,  ferment date, yeast used, brix, specific gravity, and potential alcohol. It’s getting real now!


We bottled the Pear and Pear Sumac wine this weekend and will taste the final product during the hot days of summer when a cool, crisp, white wine will be a perfect end to a long, hot day. Cheers!


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