How to Make your own Japanese Plum Wine - Umeshu (梅酒) - Adventures of Anette

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

How to Make your own Japanese Plum Wine - Umeshu (梅酒)


It is the beginning of July and we have just had the big season for plum wine (umeshu - 梅酒) making here in Japan. If you like the taste of plum wine you can even try to make your own, as starter kits are available in almost any of the bigger grocery stores here.

It is actually quite easy to make your own umeshu even without a kit, and it is said that it is hard to fail at making it, so even if you have any experience making drinks you could easily give it a try.


Below I'll give an easy explanation about how to make your own plum wine.

What you need:

●Plums 1kg
●Sugar Around 700g
●White liquor 1.8L
●A clean container (For instance a 5L bottle)

① First you leave the plums in a bowl of water for a couple of hours before cleaning them. It is important to remove all dirt from the plums to avoid any fungus developing during the period the plum wine is left to mature.

Dry the plums & remove the plum stems

Fill the jar with plums and sugar in layers one after the other. Be careful so that the plums don't get crushed.

⑤Pour the liquor carefully into the jar

⑥Once you have filled up the jar, leave it in a dark place. From time to time you can shake the jar carefully to make sure that the sugar is evenly mixed.

...And that's it! Now you only have to wait a year or so before the umeshu is ready (it is drinkable after three months or so, but the longer you wait the better it gets!)

Step 4: Plums and sugar

When can I make plum wine?

If you find yourself in Japan the best season for making plum wine is around May-June. This is also when you can find equipment and ingredients prepared for you in the stores. Apparently the best timing to use plum for wine making is 3 months after the plum flowers have bloomed, so you can time it depending on when the plums bloom in your country.

If you succeed with keeping the plum wine safely in a cool place it can refine in up to 20 years! Good luck!

Plum wine ready to be stored
Thank you for reading! Please feel free to leave any comments or questions below
Anette
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About Anette
Anette came to Japan as an exchange student in 2010, met the love of her life and got stuck. From her base in Tokyo she writes about her experiences as a full-time worker in Tokyo and about her travels in Japan and abroad. She's a free-spirited adventurer who'd gladly trade a trip to the shoppingmall for a hike in the forest any day.

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About Me

Adventures ofAnette


The classical story about a girl who went for a one-year exchange program to Japan, fell in love and got stuck there. Starting out as a student in Kyoto in 2010 I now work full-time in Tokyo as a hotel consultant, and write mostly about my travels, working life in Japan as well as a bunch of random stuff.
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