4 Tips For Adding Flavorings To Your Wine

LIqueur FlavoringsWe have been purchasing a peach flavored wine. Is there a way to take a white wine and add a peach flavoring to it to replicate a peach wine?Name: Mack T.
State: TN
Hello Mack,
Glad you asked! It just so happens we have liqueur flavorings that many home winemakers have been using with some success. I say some because you do need to play around with it to get it tasting its best — no differently than coming up with a brand-new wine recipe on your own.
These liqueur flavors were originally intended for making different flavored alcoholic mixers… everything from Frangelico/Hazelnut to Grand Marnier/Orange Brandy. But, by adding them to a wine you can enhance it’s flavor. In your case you would play around with the Peach Schnapps liqueur flavoring.
Here’s what I’ve learned over the years of toying with them:
  1. Don’t go overboard. One bottle to 5 or 6 gallons of wine is plenty. These little bottles have a lot of flavor packed in them. You can experiment with using a second bottle, but be very cautious. I would never add more than two bottles. The result can be a wine with a lightly bitter finish.
  2. Give the wine some time. Once you have added a bottle, let the wine sit for a day or more before tasting it. These flavorings seem to take time to mingle with wine. With a little time given, you will notice more fruity aroma and cleaner finish. 
  3. Get sweet with your wine. When adding an actual fruit flavor, such as the case with your peach, you will usually need to sweeten up the wine slightly to get the effect you want. Extremely dry wines are not capable of giving strong fruity impressions. Take the dry edge off with some sweetening, and you should experience the fruitiness start to open up. If you are dealing with a 5 or 6 gallons batch, maybe start by adding one or two cups of a sugar syrup mixture and go from there.
  4. Work with a sample. If you are just not sure about how much flavoring or sweetening to add, you may experiment on a gallon of the wine first. Add measured amounts to the gallon to establish a dosage for the rest of the batch. If you do take the gallon sample too far, you can add it to the rest of the batch and start all over. If you really messed it up, you can dump it and start all over.
Additional Notes:
  • The sugar syrup mixture can be made by adding 2 parts sugar and 1 part water in a sauce pan and gently heating until it becomes clear. Allow to cool before adding to the wine.
  • Remember: always add potassium sorbate when sweetening a wine to eliminate the chance of a re-fermentation.
Hope this helps you out,
Ed Kraus
Ed Kraus is a 3rd generation home brewer/winemaker and has been an owner of E. C. Kraus since 1999. He has been helping individuals make better wine and beer for over 25 years.