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How To Make Wine From Grape Juice Bought from a Store


This page describes easy to follow, step by step instructions on how to make Wine at home from Grape Juice bought from a store. It is not as difficult as you might think so why not have a go - the results are very rewarding!

The method is simple! Basically all you need to do is to add sugar and yeast to the grape juice and then sit back and wait for the yeast to turn the sugar into alcohol.

Dont worry if you dont have any equipment you can get a Complete Starter Kit that contains all the equipment that you will need. Alternatively you can begin with a Basic Starter Kit  and build up from there as you gain more experience.

When you have read this page you may like to learn more about wine making. I recommend that you take a look at this book-

First Steps in Winemaking contains 150 detailed winemaking recipes, arranged in month-by-month order so you can make wine all the year round. As well as the recipes, the concepts and techniques of winemaking are explained in easy to understand terms. If you have to buy one book on homewinemaking this is the one!


You may prefer to watch my step by step video first but please come back here and read the following step by step notes for more details on quantities, tips and methods.


Step 1:

Make a Yeast Starter.

Boil some water and add to a tumbler.

Place into cold water until cool - ideally about 21 degees C. If it is too hot it will kill the yeast.

Add a tablespoon of sugar, a tablespoon of wine yeast and a pinch of Yeast Nutrientim6.

I used a general purpose Super Wine Yeast Compoundim2 .

Cover with clingfilm to prevent bacteria getting in.

After about an hour the yeast will start turning the sugar into alcohol. You will see bubbles rising from the bottom of the tumbler.




cling film

Step 2:

Get 4 One Litre Cartons of Grape Juice for every gallon you want to make.



Step 3:

Use a Hydrometer to measure the Specific Gravity of the Juice.

This will tell you how much sugar is in the juice and how much you need to add to get the desired alcohol content.

In the photos I've poured the juice through a sieve and into a test jar and I have inserted my hydrometer.

You can see the reading is 1068 (see my how to use a hydrometer page for an explanation of how to use the reading).

There is also a table on this page. It shows two things:

1) One gallon of this juice will contain 1lb 13oz of sugar

2) If all of this sugar is converted to alcohol it will give an alcohol strength of 9.2%.

Now a good wine will have a strength of about 12% so we will need to add some extra sugar. Looking at the table, 12% requires 2lb 6oz of sugar. So I will need to add 9oz of sugar for every gallon of the juice.

sample jar




Step 4:

Weigh the sugar and boil it to disolve it. I used 300mL of water so that the 4 litres of juice, the sugar and the water gave 4.5 litres (one gallon) in total.

weigh sugar


Step 5:

Sterilise your Brewing Bucket then add the 4 litres of Grape Juice.

Then add for each gallon you make:

1 teaspoon of Yeast Nutrient

1 teaspoon of Pectolase (or Pectin Enzyme)

1/2 teaspoon of Grape Tannin

2 teaspoons of Citric Acid


Step 6:

Add the Yeast Starter to the juice

add starter

Step 7:

Put the cover on the bucket and leave for 4 days.

This stage of the process is called Primary Fermentation


Step 8:

Sterilise a demijohn and siphon tube using a Campden Tablet.

For red wine use a tinted demijohn. If you use clear demijohns then sunlight can cause the wine to oxidise, which turns the wine a brownish colour and can spoil the flavour.


Step 9:

Siphon the fermenting juice from the Brewing Bucket into the Demijohn using a syphon tube fitted with a trap.



Step 10:

Fit an Airlock and leave in a warm dark place until all bubbling stops. This could take several weeks.

This stage of the process is called Secondary Fermentation.


Step 11:

Sterilise a siphon tube and a second demijohn.

Siphon the wine into the second demijohn.

Fit an airlock and leave in a cool dark place until all bubbling has finished and the wine is totally clear.

This stage is called racking.



Step 12:

Wash and sterilise your Wine Bottlesim16 and your siphon tube.

Siphon the wine from the demijohn into the bottles.

clean bottles


Step 13:

Insert Corksim18 into bottles using a Corker.


Step 14:

Drink and Enjoy!



Step by Step Video


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