Liquid inside a bottle of wine needs protection from the environment. To prevent damage to any bottled wine, seal wine with beeswax; you can inhibit your wine from turning to vinegar due to overexposure to the oxygen in the air. There many different colours of wax to choose from. You can even imprint the hot wax with your own insignia. When you make a wine bottle air tight, you are guaranteed to increase the longevity of the wine protected inside.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Oven glove
- Empty metal vegetable can
- Wine bottle
- Stamp (optional)
- Water (four cups)
- Measuring cup
- Stove (gas or electric)
Fill a measuring cup with water and empty the measured water into a medium saucepan until the pan is filled with four cups of water. Bring the pan to the stove. Place the pan on a burner that is larger than the bottom of the saucepan to guarantee even heating across the bottom of the pan. Turn the burner on medium high once the pan is on the burner.
Remove the paper label from a vegetable can. Break pieces of beeswax off a large block or roll of natural beeswax and begin to fill the empty metal vegetable can so that the can is filled to the top edge with hard, dry beeswax. Lightly tamp down the wax near the top of the can so that it does not fall out into the pan during the initial stage of melting.
Place the can filled with hard, dry beeswax chunks into the warming water in the saucepan and continue to warm the water around the can until the wax inside begins to melt. Keep watch over the melting wax and adjust the temperature of the water until it is hot enough to bring all the wax inside the can to a liquid state. Boiling water is the requirement to melt most bees wax, and lightly stirring both the water and the wax will melt the wax evenly before using it to seal wine.
Remove the pan from the stove using oven gloves once the wax is completely melted. Place the hot pan with the can of melted wax onto a towel or pot holder to protect the surface of the counter or table.
Clean the neck of each bottle before you begin to seal wine with beeswax. Use soap and water and a dry towel to completely clean and dry the glass around the cork. Do not wet the top of the cork when cleaning. Wet cork will not adhere to the wax after the wax hardens. Let the glass bottle and the cork dry. Insert the cork into the bottle's neck.
Dip the neck of the wine bottle into the melted wax so that the wax covers the top of the bottle where the cork is inserted and at least two inches down the neck of the bottle. A good way to know you have enough wax is to dip the bottle into the wax as far as the cork is plunged into the bottle neck. Most corks are two to three inches long and this is how far you should dip the bottle into the wax.
Turn the wine bottle right side up and let the wax dry completely. Now is the time to stamp an impression into the wax on the bottle's side, or directly on top. Be sure that the wax is thick enough to leave an imprint while not damaging the seal that the wax has on the bottle and the cork.
Tips and warnings
- Dip the neck of a wine bottle in wax more than once to achieve thicker layers of wax. Dip, cool and dip again until you have the amount of beeswax protection you think is best for you and your wine. Place the finished waxed bottle in the refrigerator to cool.
- Melted wax is hot enough to burn skin to the third degree. Protect yourself with eye wear, gloves and arm protection to avoid burning exposed skin during this project.
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