View Full Version : Dandelion Wine Question

10-12-2006, 19:26
I know this probably isnít the best place but I was wondering if anyone here knew anything about making Dandelion Wine. About 3 years ago I made a little bit with the recipe in the book 100 Proof and kinda forgot about it while it was aging in my basement. Iím wondering if it is safe to drink because all of the recipes Iíve looked at online and the one in my book say to age for 6 months and make no mention what would happen if you aged it longer nor could I find anything about possible dangers associated with making this wine. Iím assuming itís ok to drink but this has aged much longer than the directions say to age it for. The only thing that really bothers me is the yellow ring at the top of the jug, it was there before the first 6 months were up but now it is a lot bigger and brighter. From what I have read the sediment on the glass rocks is must (yeast, pigments, pollen, etcÖ) and is normal, the color of the wine also looks normal. Just figured I would ask here so I know whether or not Iím going to poison myself whenever I do try it.


(If your wondering, I only picked enough dandelions for enough wine to fill 1/2 the jug so I added thoroughly cleaned glass rocks to displace the wine just in case oxidation would become an issue. You need to pick ALOT of dandelions to make this stuff and you can only use the petals, none of the green should be used.)

10-13-2006, 00:06
I am not a wine maker. I have read a fair bit though, I am just to lazy to go to all the trouble of actually make it. But I can't see how it could be dangerous. The basic ingredients are edible after all. The only danger I can think of would be that it had turning into a very strong vinegar. The stuff you buy in the store is heavily diluted. But pure vinegar is unlikely to be dangerous. The smell of the hair burning in your nose should be enough to prevent you from drinking it...

Feel free to wait for others with more brewing experience to chime in, but my advice it to open it, pour a glass, nose it, and if it smells good, drink it.


10-13-2006, 00:10
Fermented beverages don't turn into poison when they go bad, they turn into vinegar, and your nose will tell you whether or not that has happened. Let your nose be your guide. It will tell you whether or not to get your mouth and stomach involved.

10-13-2006, 06:37
:lol: I too made dandelion wine, my bottle looked pretty identical (yellow ring, etc). I too forgot about it. I too was worried about trying it. To the point that I never opened it.

I would follow the others advice here, pop the top! Take a whiff, take a swig. I wish I would have many years ago, I'm still curious to this day if the contents were any good.

10-13-2006, 08:43
The first key to avoid spoilage is to eliminate as much air contact as possible. A tight lid or airlock will acomplish that and will minimize the chance of most of the organisms that can cause off flavors and aromas. If vinegar bacterii have never infiltrated your vessel, it can't turn to vinegar. It's good to get the wine off of the sediment (yeast and formerly suspended solids) within a month or so, but it's not a critical issue.

I would try to carefully rack it off those marbles which are holding the yeast and into a smaller container (some specialty dairies still use bottles in convenient sizes for your needs) and let the sediment settle to the bottom for a month or so before serving/bottling, but I'd taste it now to see if you have a satisfying product.


10-15-2006, 18:33
Thanks for the info guys. I racked 2 bottles but my hose wasn't long enough for the 3rd so I just poured it from the jug through a funnel. The first one is pretty much ready to go but the other 2 are going to have to sit for a while and be re-racked. It's defintely wine, it's got the wine smell and taste. I'm not a fan of wine at all, I just made this because I thought it would be fun. Here's some pictures of the (mostly) finished product:


I have one more question, how do I store this? Right now the bottles are sitting where I left the jug to age, do I need to refigerate this now? Thanks again!

10-20-2006, 05:08
I have one more question, how do I store this? Right now the bottles are sitting where I left the jug to age, do I need to refigerate this now? Thanks again!

Refrigeration will slow oxidation of the partial bottle, but if you want any further maturation to occur, cellar temperature is better for that with the full bottles. The one that looks to be thick with yeast will probably benefit from careful decanting off the yeast when it settles out, assuming it will.

Nothing dangerous will grow in your wine, and if there is no air, then you should have no trouble with vinegar. There can be other things that are unpleasant, though. As has been suggested, let your nose and palate be your guide.

Looks like a fun project.


10-20-2006, 16:49
Yeah, I’m going to let the two on the right sit for a while so that I can get rid of the yeast. I just checked them and the worst one has a little mountain of must at the bottom but it still needs to settle more.

Making the wine was kind of fun even though the bulk of what you do is wait. The first part, picking 2 quarts (or in my case, 1 quart) of dandelion petals (the recipe says not to use any other part of the flower/weed) is extremely tedious but once you get into it the task is somewhat meditative. Next you add them to some boiling water and let them sit for 5 days. Fermentation is the next step after you strain out the petals and simmer the liquid with some sugar and lemons; yeast is added after it cools and it’s left to sit again, this time for six days after which you put it in the jug with an airlock to continue the fermentation for a few weeks in your basement. Finally, the airlock is replaced with a cap and you can just forget about it for a while.

I pretty much just made this for the sake of making my own alcohol, I doubt I’ll drink much, if any, of it. Hopefully I’ll have some wine drinkers over so it doesn’t go to waste. I think next I’ll try my hand at making some beer next… to bad it’s dangerous/illegal to distill… :)

Thanks again to everyone for their help with this!

10-21-2006, 15:54
Well, it's not illegal to own one (www.coppermoonshinestills.com)...

Also, this is legal (http://www.atf.gov/pub/gen_pub/regulated/spiritsalc.pdf) as well...