A Guide To 5 Homemade Fruit Wines For A Very Merry Christmas

As we march on to December, households across India have already launched into their Christmas preparations. It’s a time of festivity, decadence and delicious excess, and that means feasts that people wait the whole year to enjoy. Part of the menu for many Christian communities including it East Indians, Mangaloreans, Syrian Christians, Anglo-Indians and Goans are homemade fruit wines, most often conceptualised and brewed in their own backyards.

Made with seasonal fruit and usually with a touch of spices like cinnamon, pepper and nutmeg, these wines are the essence of Christmas for many families. Though the tradition is dwindling as the years go by, many people still feel like Christmas is incomplete without a glass of homemade wine with a side of plum cake.

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Spread the festive cheer around your family with these 5 simple recipes you can make at home.

1. Grape Wine

The OG of fruit wines, you can find more than enough different varieties and vintages in any store, but nothing beats the taste, or the fun of making it at home. 


  • 1 kg black grapes
  • 650-800 gm sugar
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • 1.5 litres water
  • 1 tbsp wheat kernels


Wash and dry the grapes and then crush them with your hands into a large clay or porcelain jar. Store it in a dark spot for a week untouched and then stir it every day with a wooden spoon for the next 3 weeks. On the 24th day, strain the wine into bottles, refrigerate and serve.  

2. Apple Wine

More akin to a cider than a wine, apples make for a delicious and tasty beverage (after all who doesn’t love apple juice?). This easy ferment is naturally sweet and absolutely delicious, an irresistible Christmas treat. 


  • 3 kgs red apples
  • 1.3 kg granulated sugar
  • 400 gm raisins
  • 14 gm citric acid
  • White wine yeast
  • Yeast nutrient
  • 3.7 litres water


Simmer the chopped raisins for 10 minutes, cool and add in the sugar. Cut the apples and add them to the mixture. Pour the whole lot into a brewing bin and let it rest for 8 hours. Add remaining ingredients, stir, and leave for 5 days. Transfer to a glass jar or demijohn and store in a cool place for 3 weeks. Strain out and mature for a month before serving. 

3. Pineapple Wine

Tart and sweet, pineapples offer a unique and delicious type of fruit wine. The natural enzymes in the fruit help the fermentation process and result in a flavour bomb of a drink. 


  • 1.3 kg pineapple with skin and core
  • 900 gm granulated sugar
  • 400 gm raisins
  • Yeast nutrient
  • White wine yeast


Cut pineapple and raisins and add them into a brewing bin. Boil water, dissolve sugar, let it cool for 10 minutes and then let it sit with the fruit mixture for 12 hours. Top with wine yeast, citric acid, and yeast nutrient. Stir and leave for 24 hours. Pour into a glass jar, and store for a month in a cool, dark place. Strain into another jar, and leave to mature for 2 months. Repeat the process 2-3 times before consumption.

4. Strawberry Wine

When the season rolls around everyone want to load up on as many delicious berries as possible, but by turning them into wine, you can enjoy the flavour all year long!


  • 3 kgs strawberries
  • 7 liters water
  • ½ tsp lime juice
  • 2 tsp wine yeast
  • 2 kgs sugar


Clean strawberries and mash the strawberries in a jar. Pour over boiling water and cover it for 10 minutes. Add lime juice, stir for 3 minutes and then add wine yeast and let it cool. Cover with a linen cloth and let it rest in a cool, dark area stirring daily. After a week, strain through cheesecloth into a glass jar. Add sugar, and let it sit for another week, stirring daily. After the second week, pour into glass bottles and mature for 3 months. When no bubbling is heard, and the mixture is clear, it's ready to serve.

5. Banana Wine

Most good wine takes at least a few weeks to mature, but this simple banana wine can be made in just one night. Perfect for when you have guests coming and you want to whip out something special. 


  • 2 kg bananas
  • 1 kg brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 3 dried red chillies
  • 5 cardamom pods
  • 5 cloves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • Small piece of ginger
  • 2 litres of water


Boil two litres of water and let it cool. Crush and mix dried red chillies, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, and ginger. Peel and crush the bananas. Take a clean jar and add bananas, sugar, crushed masala mix, and yeast. Pour in the water, stir well, close with a lid, and set it aside overnight. Sieve the wine the next morning and store it in glass jars. Your special banana wine is now ready to be enjoyed.