NZTCA Wine, Cider and Softdrinks Course, August 2018

What a lovely group of people to engage with for wine making and other brews!

The New Zealand Tree Croppers Association (“Tree Croppers”) are small farmers and orchardists and other interested folks keen on all things to do with trees – growing fruit, fodder, timber, soil, shelter, stabilisation, etc.  Many have their own orchards and were keen to learn other ways to use the glut of fruit they have throughout the year – there is only so much apple pie someone can cope with.

This course was the second we ran in 2018 for the NZTCA Wellington Branch, the first course we ran a few months earlier being oversubscribed.  We squeezed in 27 people into a commercial kitchen and ran them through the basics of making kiwifruit wine, cheats cider, real apple cider (with wild yeast), Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV), kombucha, kefir, blueberry fizz, sterilizing bottles and bottling.

We thought it might have been a challenge to keep so many people engaged, but they were all attentive throughout the afternoon and were a wonderful crowd to present to.  That’s another way of saying they laughed at our jokes.

Everyone was able to sample the drinks we were making as we went and many discovered a passion for trendy non-alcoholic brews they never had before, and didn’t realise how easy they were to make at home.  There was a rush on our surplus SCOBY’s to take home, and many enjoyed the different tastes of different plum wines with a mind to do their own experiments.  Lots of great questions, and many in the group had already experimented with their own brewing previously with varying levels of success.  We could see a number of ‘a-hah!’ moments during the afternoon as some worked out what they might do differently next time, or other recipes they might try.

There was strong interest from the group to make their own brews, and we’ve had a number of follow up questions already from the course.  Feedback was overwhelmingly positive.

We’re delighted that it was written up for the NZTCA Wellington newsletter, great publicity for IntoBrews.  Thanks NZTCA!