How To Make Pear Wine

Known as “the fruit of the gods” in "Homer’s Odyssey," pears have been a favored fruit that has been used in countless recipes over thousands of years, including how to make pear wine. Pear wine comes in two main varieties: pear wine and pear mead (or perry). The pear itself affects the wine recipe due to the different kinds of pears and what they are best suited for. The hardness, texture and acidity of the pear will greatly change the way your wine will taste; thus, it will take many practices to produce the perfect pear wine.

To make pear wine, you will need:
  • 6 pints of chopped pears
  • 1 lb. of raisins
  • 3 lbs. granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. acid blend
  • ½ tsp. pectic enzyme
  • 1/8 tsp. grape tannin
  • 1 packet wine yeast (Preparing the yeast packet can take hours, so read the directions on packet.)
  • 1 tsp. yeast nutrient
  • 1 gallon of water
  • 1 Campden tablet (A sulfite that prevents wild yeast oxidation and promotes cultured yeast growth.)
  • Primary fermentation container (four-gallon heavy plastic container with lid)
  • Secondary fermentation containers (2 or 3 one-gallon glass jugs)
  • Airlock
  • Large nylon mesh straining bag
  • 5 wine bottles for one gallon of wine
  • Corks (size #9 fits standard wine bottles)
  • Hand corker
  • Bung (This is the closure for the airlock and the fermentation containers.)
  • Clear, flexible half-inch diameter plastic tubing
  1. Water and pears. Place the water on the stove to boil. While you are waiting for that, prepare the pears.  Pears will need to be chopped, cored and de-stemmed with absolutely no seeds. Place the pears and the raisins in the straining bag and mash the fruit with a potato masher or wine bottle.
  2. Combine ingredients in fermentation container. Combine the fruit, sugar, tannin and acid blend in the fermentation container, then pour the boiling water over the mixture. Continuously stir the mix until sugar is fully dissolved.
  3. Let the mix cool before adding the pectic enzyme. The mix should take approximately one hour to become room temperature. When that is achieved, add the pectic enzyme and stir. Let this new mixture sit for one day.
  4. Add yeast and yeast nutrient. After one day of letting the mixture sit, add your prepared yeast (as per packet instructions) and yeast nutrients. Test the mixture with hydrometer for sugar content and add more if needed. The hydrometer should read between 22 and 24 brix, which means alcohol percentage is eleven percent.
  5. Cover and place in warm dark location. Continually stir the mixture every day for one week. Then take out mesh bag and let the mixture drip drain. Do not squeeze the fruit, only drip the juice.
  6. Place into secondary fermentation container. Use the tubing to siphon the clear wine into the second jug. After you have placed the liquid into a secondary container, seal with bung and air lock. Repeat this process with another container in one month.
  7. After three months have passed, add Campden tablet. The wine should no longer be fermenting or producing dead yeast cells. If it is, continually change the fermentation container ever 30 days until wine is clear.
  8. Rack into bottles and let sit. If wine is clear and no longer fermenting, rack into your bottles and let mixture sit for a minimum of six months before tasting white wine. Waiting six months to one year for your wine to sit will add a better taste to the wine.
Tips & Warnings:
  • If pears turn brown within the first fifteen minutes after cutting, add a pinch of powdered vitamin C to the ingredients in step two.
  • Mash the fruit directly into the fermentation container to preserve as much fruit juice as possible.
  • Pear wine tastes better with a maximum alcohol percentage of twelve.
  • Make sure your mixture is air locked to prevent oxygen from leaking in and turning your wine to vinegar.
  • Wine kits are available in select stores, which provide all the tubing, bottles and other items needed for your wine making.
  • Beginners should start with grape wine before trying other fruit.
  • When changing containers, be very gentle to not mix the sediment you are trying to ferment away from the wine.
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