River Cottage Australia



Try this recipe for delightful Lilly Pilly Champagne by Paul West from River Cottage Australia.


  • 4 litres hot water

  • 1kg sugar

  • 700g lilly pillies

  • 250ml freshly pressed apple juice

  • Juice and zest of 4 lemons

  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar

  • 1 tsp yeast nutrient

  • 1 tsp pectinase

  • 8g premium wine yeast


  • 1.

    Place hot water and sugar into a large saucepan or container. Stir until the sugar dissolves, then top up with cold water to make 6 litres of liquid in total.

  • 2.

    Crush lilly pillies with your hands in the bowl, squeezing out as much juice as possible and keeping crushed pulp and juice.

  • 3.

    Add to the warm water the lemon zest and juice, vinegar, crushed lilly pillies and juice and stir gently.

  • 4.

    Cover with clean muslin or cheese cloth and leave to ferment in a cool, airy place for two days. Take a look at the brew at this point, and if it's not becoming a little foamy and obviously beginning to ferment, add another pinch of yeast. Leave the mixture to ferment, covered with muslin, for another four days.

  • 5.

    Strain the liquid through a sieve lined with muslin and decant into sterilised strong glass bottles with champagne stoppers, Grolsch-style stoppers, or sterilised screw-top plastic bottles.

  • 6.

    Seal and leave to ferment in the bottles for at least a week before serving, chilled. The champagne should keep in the bottles for several months. Store in a cool, dry place.

Nutritional information

Nutritional analysis per serving (6 servings)

Note: The information shown is Edamam's estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist's advice.

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* Special care must be taken when making your own alcohol. Do not attempt this recipe without taking proper precautions. Alcohol must only be made and consumed by people over the age of 18 in Australia. 

* To avoid explosions, use strong bottles and strong seals. A really active mixture can produce lots of gas if left for a long period, so do remember to let it off regularly to prevent explosions.

* When placed in water, the bad fruit sinks because its internal airsack disappears with age. Use only floating lilly pillies.

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Posted by Lisa3322Report
Hello from the other side of the world. I tried your recipe and was hoping for champagne, what i got - was vicious vinegar :-)
What happened?
I added yeast, which they user here for making wine (of grapes). When do u add the first pinch of yeast? In you recipe it just mentions 4....add another pinch...
Any suggestions?