Schmitztech Plum Wine

2019 Plum Ferments

This year we had a huge harvest and ended up with 14 gallons of crushed plums. 4 gallons we fermented for vinegar, so we added no campden tablets.

A day after pitching the yeast the solids rose to the top and we scooped them off.

We added campden to the remaining 10 gallons and waited 24 hours before pitching the yeast. We followed the 2016 recipe, but added less sugar, but we also aimed to reduce the tartness by removing the skins earlier. The plums have about 10 oz / gallon sugar naturally, and we added 18 lbs of sugar to increase this to 39 oz sugar / gallon while expecting 33 oz sugar / gallon to ferment (14% ABV). We removed the solids/skins/pits as soon as possible, which was a day after pitching the yeast once fermentation bubbles rose the solids to the surface.

  1. To the 10 gallons we added 3 T yeast nutrient, 3 T acid blend, 3 T pectic enzyme, 8 lbs sugar, 2 packages cotes de blanc.
  2. After a day, skimmed the solids.
  3. To the remaining 7 gallons we added 6 lbs sugar and 4 T yeast nutrient, 1/2 tsp acid blend, 1/2 tsp pectic enzyme.

Next year we would add the yeast nutrient, pectic enzyme, and yeast and let it ferment for a day to make it easier to remove the pits and skins. Once the debris rises to the top, we would skim it off and then add the sugar and acid blend (measured against the remaining liquid).

2016 Plum Wine

Our previous plum wine was delicious, but quite tart–particularly in the aftertaste. Because of this, we added more sugar, which should increase the alcohol to the maximum (~ 14%) and the sweetness slightly.

Tasting notes: the plum wine still has a tart aftertase, but also a pleasant sweetness–much more akin to what you would expect from a plum wine but without restricting itself to a desert wine. While we’re not smitten, we have confidence it will age well. Sara is a huge fan–it reminds her of her childhood.


On Whidbey we have a huge Shiro plum tree. It produced around 15 gallons of plums this year. We make plum chutney with many of the plums, but that’s not nearly enough. This year we tried a couple of plum wine recipes.

First Recipe

We made a triple batched (all ingredients multiplied by 3).

Second Recipe

We tried a recipe with no added water.