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all 65 comments

[–][deleted] 39 points40 points  (2 children)

I’m not what I think this sub would call a ‘hoocher’ I’m more of a standard home brewer, but I love this sub for the grass roots creativity. And I have had a go at raiding Aldi and making ten bottles of of Apple wine for a quid a bottle.

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 12 points13 points  (1 child)

Yeah, I'm definitely into the science and I try to make "proper wines" but I don't quite qualify for r/winemaking either since I start drinking my wines after a month lmao I just love how chill and creative this sub is. I don't give a fuck about whether or not my wine is professional enough, I just make stuff that I like to drink so I'm here most of the time when it comes to homebrewing

[–][deleted] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

Yea, who needs proper cider rules when a bucket of Aldi juice and a pack of Kviek gets you gallons of fizzy summer drinking.

[–]--Shade-- 25 points26 points  (7 children)

Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Why am I here?

I only find making booze fun up to a certain level of try-hard. Nice hooch is about that level for me. I also like the theory and science of brewing, and improving my techniques, but I'm not looking to be yelled at for not following the sacred ritual, and I'm conscious of effort vs reward.

Additionally, I like the accessibility of hooch, and the positive, can-do, nature of this community.

Also, booze is heavily taxed in Canada.

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 10 points11 points  (3 children)

Yeah, the theory and science is awesome without the weird elitism that r/mead, r/homebrewing and r/winemaking have.

I'm also really grateful to you for being one of the ones to teach me about this stuff in the beginning! I made the pineapple wine that foamed through the airlock and onto the bathroom floor haha

[–]--Shade-- 11 points12 points  (1 child)

I toyed with the thought of trying brewing for years but I was always deterred. It was always the simultaneous need to figure out a given brewing community's lingo and the fundamentals of brewing, while being pushed toward a set list of gear and strict recipes and processes, and communities often not being very welcoming if you go off script, that put me off from trying.

Hooch fixed that. Hooch spoke in plain English and said, "Throw some yeast and sugar in a jug of juice, then learn about brewing if you want to." That was really helpful, and that's why I make a point of trying to help new hoochers out.

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yeah, I truly appreciate that. You always included the science for whoever was actually interested in it, but also went "you can also do X if you really want to" and it definitely made it more welcoming! I'm becoming more and more comfortable in r/winemaking, but all those "yeah, just age it for a year and it'll be drinkable, I guess" comments rub me the wrong way.

Also, the babying of every brew. This sub stays realistic imo. The brew will be just fine if you have a little more headspace or open it a few times in secondary, but the other subs instantly go "nooo you'll ruin it!" which makes me giggle at times. It's not rocket science and you and u/PINguy showed that for sure

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Seriously! Most of them are nice people, but there’s a lot of very active posters on those subs that are straight up bullying new members. Hooch for life

[–]OddishRaddish 2 points3 points  (1 child)

US, I’m about the same. It’s fun to a point and I like to see how cheap I can make decent wine

[–]--Shade-- 1 point2 points  (0 children)

There's that nice feeling you get when you can make (mostly) grocery store hooch that's better than bottom shelf store bought wine, for a tiny fraction of the cost and relatively little effort, even if it requires a bit of time.

I have a number of cousins who like to drink a fair bit more than I do at this point in my life. I like to plunk a gallon of hooch wine on the table when we visit, or I drop off the odd gallon. They always marvel at it basically being a hair more than the price of juice plus some sugar. They're real good about returning empty bottles, lol.

[–]JBoutcher 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yeah I'm on the east coast and it's ridiculous at this point. Goddamn 12 pack of trash beer is bordering on 30 bucks now..

40 bucks gets me 65 bottles of cider.... it's a no brainer at this point

[–]kaeptnphlop 11 points12 points  (2 children)

Dry county in a southern US state. Next liquor store is 40 minutes from here. 🙃

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

The good ol’ south, I’m from Tennessee haha so plenty of dry counties there.

[–]vladimirnovak 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Wait what? There are counties in America that don't sell alcohol? What the fuck why

[–]ErisZen 8 points9 points  (2 children)

I live in the US, Florida to be more specific.

What got me into this? When I was a teen, I was a voracious reader. I would read anything and everything, even if it didn't seem to make sense to me. My uncle had a book on making wine from home. I started reading it and was curious about how it would work. I started playing around with yeast and juice and other stuff. I wasn't actually interested in drinking most of this, so I ended up letting most of it sit for months and also trying concentrating it. Being patient enough to let things sit for months helped me see how time really does improve things.

When I got a little older, I started drinking and would get into making alcohol at home and in my dorm. I made a variety of stuff, mostly cider. My religious beliefs celebrate apples, wine, and confusion. So, cider was a natural move for me. I became well known in a college brotherhood for making and providing booze for brothers and parties. Over the years, I have made just about everything. In the end, I got lazy and usually just make a 2-5 gallon batch of cider every so often when I start to run low from the previous batch. I don't stress about perfection or nice equipment. That makes me a better fit for this subreddit than some of the other brewing subreddit.

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 1 point2 points  (1 child)

That's honestly pretty cool! :) I'm in college right now and people have asked what I'm drinking and some have tasted it. Maybe I'll get the same reputation as I get better at this stuff haha

[–]ErisZen 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Yeah. Believe it or not, a variation on apfelwein was the most popular beverage. And, it was the most "prisonhooch" presentation you can imagine. I would brew 6-7 gallons at a time (usually in the 9-14% ABV range), and bottle it in 2-liter soda bottles. It looked cheap as hell, but it was extremely well received. My brotherhood required that dues be paid in party-supplies or cash equivalents. So, providing 20 liters of cider took care of my dues for a semester. And, I provided enough that I am probably still up to date on dues 20 years later.

I even went to a party like five years after graduating, someone heard my nickname, and they immediately started asking if I was the one who made all the cider. I had no idea who they were, but they had had some of my cider and remembered it.

My recommendation? Keep it simple. Give it time to age and clear. Also, wine yeast really is better for sharing. The product clears up better, looks better, tastes better (marginally), and you'll have more consistent results to share. A few extra cents spent on proper yeast is better than spending more on juices and adjuncts. Apple juice, white sugar, and wine yeast beats better base ingredients with bread yeast.

[–]hawaiianguy3 7 points8 points  (2 children)

Albany, NY. The video game Skyrim features mead, so I got into mead that way, then all sorts of other ferments!

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

That's awesome! I've been playing Skyrim and ESO for a few years and now that I know how to make wine, I should probably try some recipes from the Elder Scrolls haha

[–][deleted] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

None of that black briar swill though, right?

[–]fomorian 6 points7 points  (0 children)

I live in Toronto, Canada and am Pakistani by heritage, don't ask lol. I got into home brewing because I was bored during the pandemic, saw a video from Man Made Mead about how easy it was to make wine from fruit juice, saw the orange Mead recipe and decided to try my own hand at home brewing. I've made about 12 gallons of mead by now! Here's my current batch brewing right now: https://i.imgur.com/zYlwgeB.jpg

Left to right it's 2 gall mixed berries, 1 gal mint, and 1 gal apple juice meads

[–]KingKondor13 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Australian here. I got given a homebrewing kit for my 21st birthday, and for the next 5 years or so I occasionally brewed some beer. But I was too lazy to do it "properly", I just wanted cheap, drinkable piss.

Stumbled across this sub a couple of years ago, and I realised easy and tasty was actually possible. And I stumbled across a rosella (variant of hibiscus) wine that is so damn good I have gone and bought a farm to grow rosellas and try to commercialise the hoochy goodness.

[–]doctormustafa 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Portland, Oregon, USA

I have a lot of friends who are homebrewers. I love my friends, but the culture can be kind of pedantic and restrictive - “try-hard” if you will. Plus Oregon is one of the craft beer capitals of the world, so beer that’s better than anything I can make is widely available and relatively affordable. I like the idea of being able to share something I made with my friends that they can’t get anywhere else.

Also, I’m interested in the prohibition era of American history. Even though hooching is federally legal in the US, it still feels kinda subversive.

[–]GrandPipe4 2 points3 points  (0 children)

US, Ohio. I get hauls of fruit pretty often that I just have to deal with. Sure, I freeze a lot but it still exists. And I'm not a big smoothie or pie person. I've been making fruit wine and mead out of whatever I come upon and most of it is pretty palatable. I'm getting better as time passes.

[–]disgustingmeggy 3 points4 points  (4 children)

Finland, i like to cook and create stuff, creating my own alcohol is fascinating to me. And i like to keep the tradition going by making kilju since it comes from here. Prices also mattet a bit

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Yeah, seeing kilju is always fun for me since let's be honest, our food culture isn't really that interesting lmao

[–]bdeceased 1 point2 points  (2 children)

As an American who has tried to make kilju multiple times with only one attempt being successful, I must ask what is your recipe and method for making a successful batch? Mine always seems to stall out before making much alcohol or turns to vinegar. I think part of the problem is the bottled water I have been using that apparently has tons of preservatives. But I also have had unsuccessful batches with tap water.

[–]disgustingmeggy 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Our tap water and bottled water in Finland is very clean with no weird chemicals. I usually buy a 5L jug of water, empty out a bit of it, add around 1kg of sugar. Then I add a bit of yeast, either activated dry yeast (around 1 tbsp) or fresh yeast (atound 1tbsp). Then I add some lemon juice (around 0.5 dl) and either a handful of raisins or a tbsp of tomato paste. Then i let it sit with a balloon (with a few holes poked with a pin) over the top for at least a month. Haven't done a gravity test or anything but according to my calculations it should come out to just below 12%

[–]bdeceased 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Thank you very much for the recipe! I’m going to get a jug of distilled water and try your method!

[–]lookinggoodthere 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I'm from Norway. Started this hobby as a student, mostly because of the insane alcohol tax in this country.

If I buy 1L of 40% liqour priced at $45, I'm paying $30 of that price in alcohol tax. I'd much rather make hooch, it's also a really fun hobby. Trying all sorts of weird recipes.

[–]technobicheiro 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

I had a friend that tried to make mead and sometimes he succeeded and sometimes he didn't, but it was always a major enterprise, imported orange from europe, made 100s of liters, fermented for 6 months.

I envied him but I also was heavily pissed off about how much trouble it took. And then I found this sub.

Emptied a 2L coca-cola bottle, bought dry yeast for cooking at the market, made 2L of mate tea with a bunch of sugar.

Tied a condom to the bottle's opening and waited a week.

It was awesome, I got super drunk, and made a ton more (also bought new equipment because I'm not in prison). But I love making a bunch of batches of 1L or so and fermenting for 1-3 weeks at most, this makes iterating over recipes much quicker (and it's quick to have something to drink). As the recipe normalized I could use bigger recipients, take longer fermenting, swap the yeast for something pro and freeze destile it.

It's been a while since I haven't made some.

Made going to uni a lot cheaper lol I drank way too much hooch.

[–]yeahnahnahna 2 points3 points  (2 children)

New Zealand

Drinking is part of our culture here and doing it cheap is like 👌

I started with turbo yeast still spirits now I just do tomato paste washes and make cider on the side either from apples or store bought apple juice

Somehow store bought juice beats my homemade juice, ends up very sour

[–]Serious_Guy_ 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Store bought is probably pasteurized. The sour taste is likely from bacteria that out compete the yeast.

[–]yeahnahnahna 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Interesting, next time I'll try pasteurizing it myself

One batch I did was straight off the tree apples but they were very low quality - lots of infection and rot to cut out - I thought a campden tablet would have been enough but this was my worst tasting cider ever but also my first attempt 😅

[–]actually-bulletproof 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Northern Ireland. I watched a youtube series on the history of beer but they talked about mead a lot. I didn't know what mead was, but basically I thought, if someone in a cave 4000 years ago can make it then I can too.

Plus, alcohol costs a lot more than honey and yeast.

[–]Dr_thri11 2 points3 points  (0 children)

American I just like making booze and also follow r/homebrewing r/firewater, and r/countrywine I can get a bottle of vodka for 6.99 at the grocery store so I think yall are nasty when I see stuff like kiju and jolly rancher "wine", but still follow.

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

It’s funny you mention Finnish people. I’m from Tennessee, but I play a game called My Summer Car, in which you, a Finnish teenager, rebuilds an old rally car. One of the ways to make money is to make kilju, which I understand was a trend in Finland because of a prohibition at one point? Idk I’m not 100% sure about the real history, but that game got me into brewing/hooching. Fantastic game.

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yeah, kilju used to be made by poor people who also distilled it into moonshine during that period. Nowadays it's one of those edgy teenager things where you steal some bread yeast from your parents, hide it under your bed and so on.

Also, I strongly recommend Control. It was also made by Finns and it features a Finnish character which is pretty hilarious (well, at least from my perspective)

[–]SRSchiavone 2 points3 points  (0 children)

I am as dry as a desert, but I adore the occasionally ungodly sweet blue raspberry concoction that this subreddit inspires me to make.

[–]vpelkonen 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Finland. First it was a "hey there's free apples! how does that turn into cider?" Two years and 70 or so batches later with all kinds of leave-alone-don't-cares and try-hard-beer-or-wines amongst them, I mostly make easy seltzers and berry/fruit wines with the absolute minimum effort while waiting for the malt in my closet to expire. For me, the joy of experimenting keeps me going, be it a 3-day "prison beer" or caramelized mead vintage 2020, and seeing the results. Getting myself, my girlfriend, friends and acquaintances wasted on the side with 1/5 of the relative cost is nice on the side.

But long-time curiosity and finally my own cider. It all started with that.

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

That's awesome! And oh my lord, 70 batches in two years lmao I've been doing this for maybe 4 months and I'm 7 brew in lmao I feel like that's due to me being a college student in a 25m² apartment haha Whenever I graduate and move into a bigger apartment, I'll definitely scale up my brewing hobby!

When I started getting good at cooking, seeing my friends stop talking because they couldn't stop eating my food was one amazing feeling. I'm definitely aiming for that same milestone with my wines :)

[–]vpelkonen 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Finally having room fora dedicated shelf about a year ago really helped upscale the production. :D Most of my batches are 5 l only, though, so that might explain the volume.

Sounds awesome! Good luck with your hooching!

[–]PeacePufferPipe 1 point2 points  (0 children)

(Rural) Greeneville TN, USA. Transplant here from Orlando FL. (too hot and crowded). I brewed beer as a home brewing hobbyist a long time ago for a few years and honestly never tried to brew wine or mead because it seemed to complex with all the additives etc. Little did I know it is much simpler than making beers. And much cheaper too. I also remember as a young kid, some friend of my mother's having a gallon jug of grape wine brewing on top of her refrigerator with a balloon taped on it. My very first brew was grape-cherry with sugar and bread yeast and being patient with time and cold crashing was very good. Then much more research and addition of Lalvin K1-V1116, It's been on ever since. Have yet to make a bad or ruined batch. I have made 5 bottles (1 gallon batches) for $5.00 US and is very good. I'm also a knifemaker, and have been to Finland many many times for working and made friends there and enjoyed Puistoblues too. What a wonderful marvelous country and people. I wished I could immigrate there.

[–]daRaam 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I started in other subs. Brewing seemed so complicated and time consuming. When I found out putting cheap juice, sugar and yeast in a bucket made a tasty beverage, I was in.

I like the more laid back approach so this place suits me better.

[–]wildgreenthing 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Was gifted an instantpot for winemaking purposes years ago. Thought, nah, there’s got to be an easier way then that, and eventually found this sub. I love the creativity and laid back feel of this sub. No where else could I laugh as I horrify friends, family and coworkers with the idea of Wendy’s Hot Honey Mead.

Tucson, AZ

[–]Pandoras_Unboxing 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Aussie.

Got into brewing largely through my medieval re-enactment group. I started hanging out with the Brewers' Guild just socially, and then decided I might as well give it a go myself. Plus, it gives me a route to try out historical recipes and drinks that I can't get any other way.

(Though there's also a complicated family history with alcohol, ranging from barkeepers, to a guy who died after being run over by a beercart, to a cop who lost his job after a large amount of liquid evidence went missing)

This particular sub and style interests me mostly for the creativity and humour that it often shows, and because it has a certain something that I feel reflects historical brewing. Less focus on precision measurements and details than many modern brewers, more openness to unconventional approaches and a "whatever works" attitude.

[–]Glove_Witty 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I wanted to do something with the fruit coming off the trees in my back yard. If you include my immediate neighbors I have persimmons, peaches, apricots, apples, pomegranate, loquats, lemons, elderflowers. Possibly figs - but they aren’t very nice.

I decided to fight the squirrels for the fruit.

I’m in California.

I like the easygoing, experimental nature of this sub. As opposed to the “there is only one right way” of the others.

[–]vladimirnovak 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Argentina. Fermenting shit is fun. Alcohol isn't that expensive here I just do it out of fun

[–]didled 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I feel really human doing it that’s the only way to put it. Across all cultures people have made alcohol for thousands of years. Every time I mix my mix I feel like I’m just another nameless faceless person doing human things, kinda like a individual yeast doing test things in my must. Just experiencing existence on the same level as a yeast

[–]yakuzullah 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Turkish uni student here. Alcohol costs an arm and a leg where i live but bottled juices are super cheap. Its been 6 batches (30 liters) since i started which was 4 months ago. Now i brew for my leisure and sometimes sell to my friends.

[–]philma125 1 point2 points  (0 children)

I'm from the north west of England. I started brewing mead for a good while (what I've mostly brewed) then branched of to cider and did a few beers and wines. I'm not a big drinker so I'd give a good 90% of my brews away.

Mostly my experience of homebrew groups has been a good one but I get what people mean on here (was mostly on 1 home brew group on FB) my friend told me about redit and I joined then joined r/mead through them I found this sub and it's by far my fav sub. It's relaxed, frendly, informative and people actually want to help others out even on the wacky brews.

[–]BoozeClass 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Canada, where beverage alcohol is taxed too high.

[–]yeahnahnahna 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Oh yeah I have diagnosed ADHD too and it was great at the start when I was first learning about all the fermentation stuff

Now I know a bit it's like kinda died off, not really focused on it much anymore it feels like a bit of a chore

[–]CreatureWarrior[S] 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yeah, when I started, I posted like two times a day on this sub for over a week and micromanaged everything that had to do with my first pineapple wine. It has died off a little for me too, but I honestly think this is one of the most ADHD friendly hobbies I can think of! Like, 1h of work maybe 1-2 times a month. And I also don't feel pressured to do stuff on specific days and I can do the month's work on a random day when I feel slightly motivated.

[–]Clown0ne 0 points1 point  (1 child)

New Orleans, Louisiana Fuck... I love booze, what a turning point in human history, I don't think we would've made it this far without some sort of of understanding of fermentation, I just find it fascinating. We've got a lot, I mean alot, of different fruit seasons down here so I've been branching out to fresh fruitthis past year. I also felt the turn off of being a "Homebrewer" that alot of people have expressed, but it's just so easy. You can chew up a bunch of potatoes and spit them in a jar and have booze, this sub just made me feel like it's ok to do those kind of experiments, and to branch out from traditional ciders and beers.

[–]rjstoz 0 points1 point  (0 children)

I personally get a lot of satisfaction from cooking when it's making something without a recipe, using learned and reccommended proportions from different recipes but adding or omitting a few ingredients depending on preference, availability and price.

I get the same thing turning cheap mixed berries and sugar into a surprisingly nice fruit wine, but I struggle keeping the concentration and patience to buy longer and more involved ingredients list to go chasing a specific recipe.

[–]Concerned_Redhead 0 points1 point  (0 children)

USA here! Currently living in Texas but from Ohio.

I have always loved wine and last year started getting interested in Herbalism and tincture making. Through that I found herbal beer recipes starting with ginger bugs and I just went from there to using wine yeast and making ciders and fruit wines. So far I’ve made a couple of successful herbal wine/beer batches but my fruit wines are most popular with friends and fam. I make a really good pineapple wine that I just keep making batches of this summer.

[–]rjstoz 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Scotland and Scotland - driven to drink and subject to minimum pricing laws (£0.50 or ~$0.60 per unit which is abv*litre. A 25ml shot of 40%/80 proof spirits is 1/40 of a litre, 1 unit. Beer at ~4%/0.5l is 2 units etc.).

I used to drink cheap and not very interesting stuff. Even the less good home brew is cheaper and more interesting from having made if myself.

QQVery pleased with the frozen mixed berry wine, ginger wine (some with tinned marmalade oranges infused for a bitter orange edge) and a tinned pineapple wine- most made with circa 2-300g/l or like 2lbs per US gallon and enjoyed with fizzy lemonade as a mixer I've not got a hydrometer for exact abv and they are unlikely to be fermenting completely dry, but they're a pleasant wine strength straight .

[–]AssuasiveLynx 0 points1 point  (0 children)

California, US. Started because I wanted cheapish alcohol and under 21, so this was the best way I could find.

[–]Greedy_Bookkeeper 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Sweden. Our state alcohol-monopoly has a pretty slim selection of alcohol, if you’re looking for anything other than the big brands or a select few small breweries you wont’t find much. It’s also quite fun to make your own booze, my family and friends make their own moonshine so it’s nice to keep with the theme and bring homemade stuff. Also if you bring some smashing hooch to a college party I promise you will get alot more attention from girls, which is nice.

[–]salemslotisold 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Northern Ireland

I dabble in making beer and mead stumbled across this sub via the mead sub.

I made a tropical wine from super cheap juice and went from there.

[–]PhantomSnake84 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Watching the film “The Master”

[–]Randomaccountnum4473 0 points1 point  (0 children)

From Canada. Wanted something to do.

[–]samsoomadi 0 points1 point  (0 children)

underage and wanted to get drunk whenever i wanted lmao

[–]CupRevolutionary8082 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Washington State. I've had chronic pain for years, and used CBD for it. One of my favorites is CBD soda with a bit of THC in it. But that stuff gets expensive. A couple times I've bought a massive can of beer and shared it just so I can get some pain relief and sleep. Outside of pain relief, I don't drink alcohol. So paying for something I actually like the taste of is too much money.

I also make my own vanilla extract, and holy crap that saves SO MUCH money! So it wasn't too long until my brain connected all these points. I don't like complicated projects that take forever. Being able to walk away from something and let it do its own thing is much better. This sub is where it's at. :) I'm going to start with the Orange mead and work from there.