Adapted Inmate Wine - Ready to Drink in 1 to 3 Weeks.




Introduction: Adapted Inmate Wine - Ready to Drink in 1 to 3 Weeks.

About: Very playful and fun loving - young for my age. Live life to the fullest.

If you are a Wine Connoisseur, this project may not appeal to you, but if you like wine and want to try making some at home in an easy inexpensive way that produces a pretty decent wine with equiptment you have around the house, then have a try with my instructable.  Adapted Inmate wine is just what it says, people have taken the idea from how prisoners made it in their cells and adapted the method to be more sanitary since we have better conditions than they have in jail.  The cool thing is that many of the sanitzing steps used in regular wine making are skipped using this method, because you make the wine in the same container of juice that you buy at the store which, is already sanitized when it's bottled.  The only things that you need to sanitize are your measuring tools, funnel, and cap that has been drilled and converted into an airlock.  That is optional as you will see in the following steps as you can use a sterile condom as an airlock as well.  This wine will reach maturity in 1 to 3 weeks and can be refrigerated and is drinkable at that time.  Let's get started.  

Step 1: Adapted Inmate Wine - Ready to Drink in 1 to 3 Weeks.

List of what you will need for one 3 liter bottle of wine:

1 - 3 liter bottle of 100% juice with no preservatives other than citric acid. Check the label ingredients.
1 to 2 cups of cane sugar (if you like a dryer wine use 1 cup or sweet use 2 cups - also the more sugar the higher alcohol percent)
1 teaspoon of bread yeast. You can use wine yeast but most people use the bread yeast to stay in the spirit of this type of wine.
1/2 cup of either, raisens, figs, or other dried fruits without preservatives other than citric acid. (to make a yeast nutrient.)
1/2 cup of some of the juice that you poured out of your juice bottle in order to make room for the sugar and homemade yeast nutrient.
fork or garlic press to smash up the dried fruit.
1 small saucepan to cook the yeast nutrient (dried fruit and juice this gives the yeast something fresh to feed on speeding up fermentation
measuring spoons & cups
1 Tablespoon of household bleach - without added fragrance
1 gallon of water
1 empty spray bottle (that has not been used for anything but water in the past)
clean paper towels or a clean towel to place sanitized impliments on.
1 new sterile condom without spermaside.
1 sewing needle
1 dark cloth big enough to rap around the juice bottle during fermentation.

Optional - extra bottle lid that will fit your juice bottle, 1/2" drill bit, a 3/8" (interior measurement) rubber grommet (from hardware store or online) 1 plastic airlock can be purchased from local homemade wine or brewing suppy store or online @ Amazon or Ebay. If you chose to make an airlock out of the extra lid, use the drill bit to drill a hole in the center of the lid., insert the grommet into the hole you made then push the airlock into the grommet. sanitize the whole unit in the bleach water then it can be screwed onto the juice bottle instead of the condom. After attaching it - remove the snap on lid of the airlock and add water to the fill line -then replace the snap on lid. It should begin to bubble shortly. See photos below on the homemade juice lid airlock.

Step 2:

Make your sanitizer solution by taking 1 gallon of water and adding 1 Tablespoon of bleach to it. You can pour some of the solution into a clean spray bottle that has never contained any chemicals in the past other than water. The spray bottle can be used to sanitize your implements such as the measuring tools and funnel etc. that have been pre-washed with dish detergent. Use a clean towel or paper towels to sit your sanitized impliments on to dry. Do not rinse off the bleach sanitizer - you will only introduce germs if you do.

Step 1: Remove the lid of your juice and pour out about a 1 1/2 cups of juice (use the 1/2 cup to make the yeast nutrient by pouring it into the saucepan.) Reserve the other cup of juice to bring juice level up to about where it was when you opened the botte prior to adding the sugar and yeast nutrient that you will make.
Step 2: Measure the sugar (to your preference of dry or sweet wine) and add it via the funnel into the juice bottle.
Step 3: Screw the lid back on the bottle and shake it vigorously to melt all the sugar crystals.
Step 4: Mash with a fork or use a garlic press on the dried fruit to help mix with the juice in the saucepan. Heat it to simmer for a couple of minutes then remove to cool down to where you can touch the pot without getting burnt.
Step 5: Add the Yeast Nutrient that has cooled down by pouring it through a strainer in your funnel so you only get the infused juice and no solid fruit into your juice bottle.
Step 6: Add the 1 teaspoon of yeast to the Juice bottle.
Step 7: Screw the lid back on the bottle and shake it vigorously to mix it well.
Step 8: remove the juice bottle lid and carefully unroll the sterile condom and stretch it over the top of the juice bottle until the rubber band part is below the lowest ring on the bottle neck. Altrernative method is to screw on the airlock lid that I made instructions for instead of using the condom.
Step 9: if you used the condom - Using the sanitized sewing needle poke a hole into the very top of the condom. Do not leave to do other things until the condom inflates as you may need to poke more holes into the top depending on how actively it's producing carbon dioxide gas. You don't want it to get so tightly expantded that it flies off the bottle. I had to poke 7 holes in a couple of the bottles that I started. Make sure that you only poke holes at the very top of the condom, Just like a tire if you get a hole in the side wall it's gonna blow and you can't fix it. The tip has extra strength and can take the abuse of the extra holes. lol
Step 10: Wrap a dark cloth that is big enough to cover the bottle below the neck. This aids fermentation and helps to retain color.
Step 11: Put your bottle in a room that the temperature isn't below 65 degrees f.
Step 12: When the condom deflates or the airlock stops bubbling - your wine is finished fermenting.
Step 13: Remove the condom or airlock and re-attach the juice bottle lid.
Step 14: Place your completed wine into the refrigerator to prevent further fermentation.
Step 15: Get a wine glass, pour in the fruits of your labor and enjoy. Your wine is ready to drink. When you pour it - let it breath for a couple of minutes and you won't smell the bread yeast as strong. Fair warning - If you used the 2 cups of sugar - it's going to be pretty potent in alcohol content. like over 12% I like mine that way.

I hope you had as much fun making it as you will drinking it. Below is a photo of some Blackberry/Pomagranet that I just made. Don't worry if your wine is a bit cloudy - it's just the extra yeast. Try not to shake the bottle now as the dead yeast will fall to the bottom of the bottle in the refrigerator. You can also freeze it and then put it into the refrigerator - that helps to clear it as well as to stop fermentation. Enjoy - Cheers!!

Here is a video that I made of my first batch last year.

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    4 Discussions


    6 years ago on Step 2

    This is great, and you are very funny! I love the use of the condoms as an airlock!


    Reply 6 years ago on Step 2

    Thanks for your comment, Yes they are rather humorous looking, all standing at attention. lol Please vote for me in the contest.


    6 years ago

    Great job. Love the mix and match experimentation. I watched your video. I would like to comment on some details.
    Yeast- the more you put in the faster the start but that does not mean more alcohol. Every 20 min yeast cells divide. 2-4-8-16, after 24 hours there are lots.
    Bleach- does not make great wine. Try using potassium metabisulphite the same way. It won't hurt the wine.
    You can drink wine at any stage and fermentation is usually done after 2-3 weeks but a clear product is a nicer product.
    Keep trying new mixes and have fun.


    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Yes, you are correct on all counts, the yeast only plays a part as bread yeast only can reach a certain level of alcohol content, if you want a higher level you must use something like Champaign yeast which will go to like 18% vol.. Sugar plays the other roll. That is why in formal winemaking you employ the use of a hydrometer to get the specific gravity prior to adding the sugar. That way you can gauge how much sugar is needed to reach the approximate alcohol level that you want to achieve. The object in making Adapted Inmate wine, is to keep it as simple as possible, and still produce a drinkable product. I do all the bells and whistles when I make my 5 gal batches of Blackberry wine, using Campton Tablets in solution to sanitize, but when you just are just making this simple wine in a bottle, the object is to use what is available at home without too much expense. That is why I suggest just spritzing the impliments like the measuring cups and spoons and allowing them to air dry prior to using them. The Bleach doesn't hang around too long in minute quanities like that. You only need to sanitize in winemaking not sterilize anyway. From all the Inmate wine info. that I have seen and read, most don't even hardly measure the yeast. They kind of guestamate how much to put People who would be making this type of wine - would be looking for a fast drinkable, inexpensive result, rather than looking for quality. lol I must admit that it was a precurser to my getting into the winemaking in a more in-depth way. I have 5 gallons of Blackberry fermenting now that was done with all the bells and whistles. I have all the equiptment necessary to make a good batch of wine. The only thing that I don't invest in, are the bottles that require corks. I save the screw top wine bottles and sanitze them to use instead and they work quite well. I now purchase actual yeast nutrient and champaign yeast as well. I have found that Knox gelatin works very well to clear my formal wine - and is inexpensive. My goal here was to inspire some people to try this, and maybe see how much fun making wine could be Then they might want to get into it in a more formal way like I did. Thank you so much for your comments, and I'm glad you liked the video. I had fun making it, and the wine. lol