I am an amateur in the topic, so I was wondering, can all edible fruits be turned into a fruit wine? Why have grapes historically become the main fruit for wine making over other fruits?

  • 1
    What do you mean by "wine", and what do you mean by "all fruit"? You can, of course, dissolve sugar in water and ferment that (the Finns call this kilju), flavoring it with whatever juice you want. If you mean fermenting the pure juice, lots of fruits won't work because they don't have enough sugar. – David Jul 6 at 21:27
  • @Ken Graham you can't just change the nature of the question. The OP said "all fruit" not "all edible fruit". Of course you can make wine from just about anything, toxic or inedible with some water and sugar. That brings up the question of what is "wine" but that's a different question! – farmersteve Jul 31 at 13:20
up vote 6 down vote accepted

Yes, wine can pretty much be made from all edible fruit, including tomatoes. But the reason we make wine out of grapes is three fold. Sugar, tannins and acids.

  1. Sugar. Grapes produce the highest naturally occurring amount of sugar of any fruit. Almost no other fruit comes close. Grapes have the ability to make wines that are anywhere from 10-18% alcohol and even higher in the case of late harvest grapes that have too much sugar to finish alcohol production.
  2. Acid. Grapes have a very high naturally occurring acid levels coming from Tartaric acid. Acids help preserve wine and keep the nasty bugs from eating the sugar. They also make it more drinkable. Wine without any acid is flat and awful. It's like beer without hops.
  3. Tannin. Red and white grapes contain tannin in both the skins and seeds. These are a natural antioxidant that help preserve the wine for long term storage.

Since grapes have such natural high sugar levels, they also have large colonies of yeast on the skin (aka the bloom) and because of this, grapes are a complete package requiring nothing else to make a high alcohol beverage that can be stored for a very long time without spoiling. No other fruit has the right combination of attributes to do this on it's own.

  • All nontoxic fruits that contain reasonable sugar levels and can be juiced. Which is a far cry from "all fruits". But still +1 for why grapes are the perfect fruit. – David Jul 5 at 15:50
  • Added edible fruit – farmersteve Jul 5 at 15:58
  • Grapes are roughly 16% sugar, and of course they work. Highly doubt limes or cucumbers at <2% will work without first adding external sugar and for limes correcting acidity. Also, good luck with avocado, where even if you can get a "juice", contains basically no sugar to ferment. – David Jul 5 at 16:10
  • Sorry, 16% sugar in grapes would be on the very low end. Typically 18%-28% sugar in grapes. Late harvest could go over 30%. – farmersteve Jul 5 at 18:12
  • 1
    We use apples without any additions and they are pretty low sugar. They just happen to have a high level of Malic acid. The question is can all fruits be turned into wine and of course the technical answer is no. But let's assume the OP meant your typical fruit at the grocery store. Then yes, most can with the addition of sugar and acid. Only apples and grapes pretty much have everything needed to make an alcohol beverage without cooking or additions. – farmersteve Jul 6 at 0:42

If they can make wine out of durian fruit, then one can make wine out of any fruit.

Most people find the taste or flavor of this fruit disgusting.

In fact durians are not allowed on the Singapore subway or on many commercial flights at all.

Sign informing that Durian fruit is not allowed inside the Singapore subway

Sign informing that Durian fruit is not allowed inside the Singapore subway.

Yet durians can be made into wine and what is great about it, is the fact that the durian wine is devoid of its' pungent smell.

It's a formidable feat pulled off by a team of student researchers at the National University of Singapore who hope to commercialize their durian wine and see the product on store shelves.

Known as both the "King of Fruits" and the world's stinkiest fruit, the durian is likewise perhaps the most polarizing food with people who either love it hate it.

After testing out different fermentation methods, the end result is a wine of 6 percent alcohol which is devoid of the fruit's pungent smell.

World's stinkiest fruit is turned into wine

Contrary to the others, I'll say no, at least if you're going to have some reasonable definition of the word "wine". Fruits which will produce no fermentable juices are simply not going to work. If you have to treat the fruits in such a way as to convert starches in order to get sugars to ferment, can you really call the product a "wine", even in a loose sense?

You are going to struggle mightily to produce wine from avocados or eggplants, for example... even limes are so low in sugar and high in acidity that even after neutralizing some acid you will have to add a bunch of sugar to have anything to ferment... in this case, you're really making a flavored kilju, rather than a wine.

And if you want to get technical about fruits, then "all fruits" is actually a very broad category. Brazil nuts, maple keys, and even carrot seeds are all fully-fledged fruits that are going to be very difficult or impossible to extract a fermentable juice from.

Of course, you could probably use a koji to first saccharify your initial base and produce something like a sake, but despite the colloquial misnomer "rice wine", if you're going to call this a wine, then you can do it with nearly anything: why limit yourself to fruits? Then is there really a further difference with kvass or even kumis. Is beer now wine?

This is completely discounting the whole classes of toxic fruits that you might be able to produce something technically alcoholic but definitely nondrinkable from, e.g. belladonna and other toxic nightshades, baneberries, etc.

  • 1
    Nobody is talking about toxic fruit. You brought that up. I'm sure the OP meant commonly available in a store type fruit. – farmersteve Jul 6 at 18:34
  • 1
    Question literally says "all fruit". In any case, that point was tangential, as is clearly implied by "This is completely discounting..." verbiage in the last paragraph. If you want to stop after the first two paragraphs, fine... the answer is still "no". No issue with your answer to the "why are grapes best" question. – David Jul 6 at 21:16

Your Answer

 

By clicking "Post Your Answer", you acknowledge that you have read our updated terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy, and that your continued use of the website is subject to these policies.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.