Firstly be 100% certain you know your trees. A beech tree produces young leaves in spring time. This is the best time to collect the leaves as they haven't got too much tannin when small. Later in the year beech wine will be too bitter for most people's taste.
So, in early May (in the UK) collect about 3 pints of young leaves from unsprayed beech trees. Make sure you have permission from the tree owner to do this.
A few months later you will have a rich, aromatic and tasty alcoholic drink which is similar to grape wines but is very much a unique experience.
This recipe will make 2 gallons of wine (about 12 bottles) This is the same recipe to use for oak leaf wine too.
In a large food grade fermentation bucket, steep the beech leaves, orange and lemon juice and chopped rasins together with 8 pints of water that is just off the boil. Boiling water will ruin the flavour, so just boiled water is better.
After 4 hours the water should be warm but no longer hot to touch. At this point add another 8 pints to bring to totalliquid up to 2 gallons.
Now add the yeast directly onto the leafy water. Place the lid on the bucket. By the next morning lift the lid and you will see the water is now covered with a thin layer of froth. Replace the lid.
Leave the bucket for a further 24-48 hrs. By this time the loud fizzing should have slowed to an ocassional bubble. The first fiery stage of fermentation is now over and a second slower phase will begin. At this point it is best to transfer the juice into 2 sterile demijohns with airlocks.
Now we only want the juice, not the leaves which have done their work by now. So, when you siphon the juice out of the bucket, do it in a way to leave the leaves and rasin bits behind. I made a trap to sit at the bottom of a siphon tuube from an old tea strainer.
The second fermentation will take about 8 weeks. After four weeks, transfer to clean sterile demijohn, leaving the sediment in the bottom of the first demijohns well alone.
After a further 4 weeks, as long as the fermentation has finished, rack off into bottles and leave for a further month before drinking as a young wine. If you leave it for at least a year, the flavours will have improved beyond all recognition.