How to Use Bentonite for Clearing Wine

by Judith Willson ; Updated September 28, 2017

Bentonite helps to clear homemade wine.

cup of red wine and piece of cake image by L. Shat from

Homemade wines often end up very cloudy. Although the cloudiness doesn’t necessarily affect the taste, it does make the wine look rather unappetizing. There are various ways to clear cloudy wine, including just letting the wine age a bit longer. However, some wines, especially plum and berry wines, are stubborn and remain cloudy long after the wine is ready to drink. One particularly effective clarification method is to use bentonite, a type of clay. Bentonite attracts the particles that cause cloudiness, thus producing a clear, clean-looking wine.

Measure one half pint of water and bring to a boil in a pan on the stove.

Put 1 1/2 tbsp. of bentonite in the mixing bowl. Slowly add the boiling water, stirring with the wooden spoon as you go. The end result should be a very thin, watery paste.

Leave the mixture for about a day, then stir once more.

Add three tablespoons of the bentonite mixture to each gallon of wine and stir thoroughly with a glass rod.

Stir at an hourly interval for a few hours.

Leave the wine for another day or overnight, at which point it should be a lot clearer and ready to drink.


  • Adjust the quantities depending on how much wine you need to clarify.

    Chilling the wine before, during and after adding bentonite helps with clarification.

Photo Credits

  • cup of red wine and piece of cake image by L. Shat from

About the Author

Judith Willson has been writing since 2009, specializing in environmental and scientific topics. She has written content for school websites and worked for a Glasgow newspaper. Willson has a Master of Arts in English from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.