• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

What Should I Do With Homemade Wine Leftovers?

 
Travis Philp
gardener
Posts: 965
Location: ZONE 5a Lindsay Ontario Canada
8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've filtered my wine and there's about a gallon of 'lees' aka the dead yeast and other solids left over. The alcohol content is about 13-15%. It's too thick and bitter to drink. I tried once and it gives a really bad hangover. It'd be a shame to just dump it down the drain. I get a new batch of wine every few months, and hope to up that productivity, so I'd really like to find a use for the lees. Any ideas?

I thought about dumping it in my basement worm composter but wondered if the alcohol content would harm them. Same with dumping it on my garden beds. There's gotta be some way to give this stuff a second purpose.

***I posted this in the permaculture forum because I'm trying to turn waste into resource, and come up with multiple uses for an element in my zone 0 system. I hope thats appropriate.
 
Joel Hollingsworth
pollinator
Posts: 2103
Location: Oakland, CA
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I think chickens would enjoy it: do any neighbors keep chickens?

I think you're right to worry about the alcohol being bad for the worms. Soldier flies are OK on a boozy diet, but I've read most compost worms & earthworms aren't adapted to so much alcohol.

A quick google search turned up a recipe for bread made with wine lees:

http://www.ehow.com/how_6876097_make-bread-wine-yeast.html

You might also try using it to make a mustard sauce of some sort (very easy, but might take experimentation to get the flavor you want):

http://honest-food.net/2010/10/18/how-to-make-mustard/

If you decided to compost it, mixing it with some compost "browns" would probably help a lot. Even if you're doing sheet composting, mixing it into some shredded leaves will probably make it safe to have around the garden bed.

It would probably be a good attractant in a bottle trap, if you have problems with mosquitoes, fruit flies, etc. You might need to add some flour and water for it to work on mosquitoes, though.
 
tel jetson
steward
Posts: 3360
Location: woodland, washington
77
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've heard of folks cooking and baking with lees from beer, cider, and wine.  I've used it in soups and it worked relatively well.  I imagine there is some good stuff in all those yeasties.  I don't have any recipes to offer, though.
 
                          
Posts: 140
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I wonder if you could distill the alcohol out of it?  Freeze it to about 22 degrees and you should have a slush.  Strain the liquid out and it should be nearly pure alcohol.  Add it back to some good wine to make brandy.
 
Joel Hollingsworth
pollinator
Posts: 2103
Location: Oakland, CA
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Tinknal wrote:
I wonder if you could distill the alcohol out of it?  Freeze it to about 22 degrees and you should have a slush.  Strain the liquid out and it should be nearly pure alcohol.  Add it back to some good wine to make brandy.


This is mostly a good idea, but the components of lees that cause a brutal hangover are not removed by freeze distillation.

If if it were legal to do so, vapor distillation would allow removal of the "heads" (methanol, which boils at a lower temperature than ethanol) and the "tails" (isopropanol, and other fusil oils, which boil at a higher temperature than ethanol) to be isolated by changing containers on the condenser as the brandy forms. But licensing for a still is expensive, and using one without a license is against the law.

Diluting the lees seems like a better idea to me.
 
                          
Posts: 140
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Joel Hollingsworth wrote:
This is mostly a good idea, but the components of lees that cause a brutal hangover are not removed by freeze distillation.

If if it were legal to do so, vapor distillation would allow removal of the "heads" (methanol, which boils at a lower temperature than ethanol) and the "tails" (isopropanol, and other fusil oils, which boil at a higher temperature than ethanol) to be isolated by changing containers on the condenser as the brandy forms. But licensing for a still is expensive, and using one without a license is against the law.

Diluting the lees seems like a better idea to me.

Damn it man. I've had a hangover before! 
 
Travis Philp
gardener
Posts: 965
Location: ZONE 5a Lindsay Ontario Canada
8
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Thanks for the ideas all. I'm leaning towards feeding it to chickens. Even chickens need to unwind once in awhile. I thought about cooking it but its rhubarb wine which is extremely bitter and sour. Not sure my iron chef skills are strong enough to make that taste good.
 
                    
Posts: 0
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Brewer's yeast (or vintner's yeast) is rich in protein and b-vitamins. If you can dry it, it can be added to an animals diet. We used to use dried brewer's yeast (sometimes called 'nutritional yeast' as a spice for popcorn. If you can't dry it or use it before it spoils, dilute it and return it to the soil or just dump it on your compost pile.
 
Joel Hollingsworth
pollinator
Posts: 2103
Location: Oakland, CA
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Travis Philp wrote: rhubarb wine...is extremely bitter and sour. Not sure my iron chef skills are strong enough to make that taste good.


It might make for a tasty mustard.
 
Joe Skeletor
Posts: 113
Location: Blue Island, Illinois - Zone 6a - (Lake Effect) - surrounded by zone 5b
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Travis Philp wrote:
Even chickens need to unwind once in awhile.


HA! 
 
Wink, wink, nudge, nudge, say no more, it's a tiny ad:
Learn, Design, Teach, & Inspire with Permaculture games.
FoodForestCardGame.com
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!