In the bible, one of Jesus's earliest miracles was turning jugs of water into wine. Let's assume that I need some wine - and it doesn't have to be good wine - but I need some wine for my guest. I have an unlimited budget and a lot of motivation. How could I turn water into wine in less than an hour using modern technology?
This website describes how to make wine in a pinch( I'm opening a wine bar, so full disclosure: I don't recommend this wine to anyone).
- Buy juice
- Add sugar
- Add yeast
- Shake shake shake!
- Plug with airlock
I am working on the assumption that acquiring the materials above is possible in your story for your characters. During the (modern-day) wedding in Palestine, you duck out to the fridge and put this together with stuff laying around?
So: Dehydrated alcohol is definitely a thing. Various flavourings are available in powdered form, and with a bit of patience and some hard work you'll probably be able to make a powdered wine that doesn't taste absolutely awful (unlike this powdered red wine for backpackers).
This has the advantage of being light, easy to apply to the water (ooh, magic), and utterly unrecognisable as 'alcohol' to anyone who doesn't already know the trick.
While it isn't strictly wine in a way that a wine connoisseur would recognise it, not much that you can make in an hour would be, and hopefully you'll be making it alcoholic enough that no-one would care.
Edit: A quick google for 'powdered wine' throws up a lot of results. Apparently some are quite good.
Edit 2: And powdered beer.
Gets out wallet
Take your jug of water into a back room and drink/spill half of it. Then add some low-sugar grape-concentrate and vodka. Shake well and return to the party.
Buy a simple Water To Wine magic trick kit that visibly makes a clear liquid become deep red.
Then use sleight of hand to exchange that for a bottle/glass of real wine before you serve.
Your problem falls into two categories:
A: You want to appear to change water into wine. This is a standard trick using a special jug that internally has two chambers. Which one drains when pouring depends on how it's held, small airholes covered etc.
You can also do some kind of sleight of hand, exchanging identical looking containers.
B: You need to actually make a beverage. This is a lot tougher. Alcohol plus flavourings. Not clear how to make a decent one. (By contrast, reasonable liquors using vodka or everclear combined with artificial flavours and colours can produce not terrible results.)
So to get a decent wine flavour, I'd start by doing a vacuum distillation of wine. Separate out the water, alcohol and everything else. I think this is in the range of current tech, but tax laws make no incentive for doing it.
Google synthetic flavor chemistry. Try vacuum distilation.