Tag Archives: homemade wine

The art of cherry kefir juice

IMG_1582I’m becoming obsessed with making water kefir juice drinks these days. This is made from black cherry juice, and it should be ready to drink in a few days. It will probably taste like cherry coke, but with a hint of alcohol, more tart, and an overall stronger flavor.

I used the blueberry kefir recipe, but substituted black cherry juice for blueberry juice and added 2 tablespoons of water kefir grains to each jar instead of 1 like I did in the blueberry juice recipe(I have a kefir grain surplus). I also used 2 jars instead of 1.This may cause it to ferment even faster and we’ll likely end up with an even stronger probiotic drink. I will skip the secondary fermentation step this time to see what happens.

This cherry kefir juice may be one of the most ideal things a distance runner can drink after a long run. I’ve already posted how cherry juice can help speed recovery in “Exercise Recovery is Just a Bowl of Cherries“, but the fact that this is a probiotic cherry drink may make it even better. So many of us can’t eat much of anything after very long runs, and some of us may even feel nauseous. Yet it is important that we eat or drink something within 30 minutes after endurance training, otherwise we can’t refuel and recover properly.

This kefir cherry juice may help resolve this issue since as a probiotic it may stimulate digestion and allow you to eat something protein rich without causing digestive problems. You could even add vegan protein powder or soy milk to it to make a more easily digestible protein shake.

I realize that black cherry juice isn’t the same exact thing as tart cherry juice. Tart cherries seem to have more healing potential, but black cherries have similar benefits, even if their anthocyanin content isn’t as high. I used black cherry juice because it is cheaper.

Echoing my previous post, it is sometimes difficult to classify these vegan kefir drinks. Are they “beer”, “wine” or should kefir be its own category? Because it is based on fermented fruit this will eventually taste more like wine than beer.

If anyone has any questions or suggestions I would love to hear from you!

Homemade blueberry wine


Blueberry honey wine fermenting in my yard.

I don’t make honey wine or wine anymore and don’t drink it or any alcohol, but making this was a lot of fun. This is an old photo from years ago when I was a vegetarian but not a vegan. I love transformative processes like fermentation. It was so educational doing this a bunch of times. Learning to ferment food can better connect you with your food, and the environment, kind of like a gardener growing a lot of the food that they eat. Fermented food may also be good for your digestion.

This blueberry wine was so sweet and delicious. It was very fruity, bubbly and pulpy, unlike most commercial wine which is “over-refined” in my opinion, and often contains all sorts of additives(many of which aren’t vegan, but then again honey isn’t vegan either). The alcohol content was pretty low, so I wasn’t under the influence when I drank this. I don’t remember the exact recipe I used, I just remember using water, honey, and blueberries. I didn’t use any commercial yeast since yeast is in the air, so just leaving it open long enough will let in enough wild yeast.

Here is a recipe similar to the one I used: How to Make Cheap Wine

It is easier than you think. I believe this recipe is vegan, and you do not have to use yeast if you do not want to; the alcohol content will likely be lower and it will ferment more slowly without the yeast, but it is worth a shot. Some homemade wine enthusiasts will leave these things fermenting for years, letting it continue to evolve into something with a very robust, complex flavor.

Whatever you do, drink responsibly.