Recipe: $21 for 5-gallons of red wine in 10 minutes

What does wine have to do with rewilding you ask? Well let’s ignore the fact that ancient man discovered wild yeast and fermentation as a means of preserving things millennia ago. Let’s focus on two things: time and money. I’ve argued in the past that time is the main thing holding us back from rewilding. Let’s also consider money for a moment. If you are already spending money buying alcohol in your grocery budget, this will save you a lot of it over time. How much you ask? Let’s run the numbers:

First we need to convert from liters to gallons. This recipe creates about 5 gallons of wine. There are 3.78541 liters in a gallon, so we are making 18.92 liters of wine. Assuming this recipe I am sharing with you totally sucks and compares to cheap wine at about $6 a bottle, you have made $113.56 worth of wine. Let’s hope you like this better than a cheap wine. I do! The ingredients in this recipe will cost you about $21 total. How is this possible you ask? One word, GOVERNMENT.

Remember those people whose ideology and behavior descended from the feudal lords and petty kings who enslaved our hunter-gatherer ancestors? Yea, those guys. Liquor is considered a sin to some, so government sees it as an easy target for their taxation schemes. The cost to produce alcohol is stupid cheap when you take out the sin tax. You can legally avoid this taxation system by making your own wine here in the US. If you’re outside the US, check to make sure it is legal to make homebrew. If you’re good to go, you should switch all your alcohol consumption to homebrew. Doing so starves the systems used to keep us domesticated by denying them tax revenue. It also saves you money and gives you more control over what you drink. You can use this recipe to get you started, but you will soon want to branch off and create your own recipes.

DISCLAIMER: If you are a homebrewer, this is probably going to bother you a bit. I am keeping everything simple to make a 10 minute wine. Steps are skipped and ingredients are not optimal. I KNOW! The finished product is still good, and it only takes 10 minutes.



  • 6 bottles of grape juice from Costco (juice must contain no preservatives except for citric acid)
  • 1 packet of Pasteur Blanc wine yeast which you can get here for 80 cents when you buy 10
  • 2 cups white sugar

Materials Needed:

Total cost for materials – $77.46

Yea, that’s less than the money you would save on your first batch!


You can sanitize your equipment with a product like Star San, but this is 10 minute wine, and I have never had any problems with wild yeast somehow overcoming the billions of Pasteur Blanc cultivated yeast we’re pitching. It just doesn’t seem to matter as much as we think it would. I just rinse everything in warm water. The juice comes pasteurized, so no need to heat if it is unopened. Again, we are going for fast, easy, and pretty darn good. You won’t be making a $200 bottle of wine. What you will make is something you could enjoy with dinner after work one Thursday.


  • Rinse bucket with hot water
  • add 2 cups sugar to 2 cups water and heat on stove to dissolve sugar
  • Once sugar is dissolved, dump three containers of grape juice into bucket, then dump half the sugar water and the remaining three jugs of juice
  • In a separate, clean container mix the remaining sugar water with an equal part filtered water. When the water is less than 100 degrees, Pitch the dry yeast in and stir well with an egg beater
  • Add yeast to bucket 10 minutes later and cover with lid. Attach airlock
  • Store in a room temperature environment for three weeks
  • Use your racking cane to transfer to glass carboy, being careful not to pick up any sediment from the bottom
  • Attach bung and airlock to carboy
  • Allow to sit and age in glass carboy for one month
  • Rack off any sediment and bottle

There you have it! Expect to spend about 10-20 minutes total getting your fermentation started. Racking will take about the same time, but bottling might take 30-45 minutes. For $21 you will get $113+ worth of wine that took you a little over an hour to produce. For an easy variation on this, double the sugar. You will get a higher percentage of alcohol in your finished product. Please comment and let me know what you think. Also feel free to share your own recipes!


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