Last year was my first foray into making home made booze. Elderflower sparkling wine is about as easy as it comes; the only equipment you need is a food grade bucket. I managed to get 35 bottles out of the bush I had only planted the previous year.
This year, after a heavy pruning in winter, the elderflowers were back with a vengeance and even after giving about a third of the crop away to a herbalist friend, I still managed to make 58 bottles!
I decided to try out a few new flavours this year. The berries are just coming into season so I added about 6 cups of raspberries, blitzed in a food processor to one batch, and six cups of blackberries to another. To balance the added acidity, I left out two of the lemons I would normally add, and just tasted the mix to make sure the balance of sugar and acid was ok. Apart from the additional fruit, the wine was made in exactly way using water, lemons, sugar and the elderflowers.
Elderflower wine, raspberry elderflower wine, and blackberry elderflower wine. Although both berry types look the same by the time they are watered down in the batches, you can really taste the difference in flavours.