Wine Cap

Common Names

Nicknames like King Stropharia, Garden Giant, and Godzilla Mushroom should tell you a little about this unique winecap mushroom. As implied by its nicknames, the winecap is known for it’s large cap.

Characteristics

The veil of the winecap mushroom covers the gills and slowly breaks apart as it ages. The large cap will grow anywhere from 1.5” and 5” in diameter and turn a reddish-brown tone as it grows to age. Winecap mycelium is thick, strong, and long.

History

The winecap mushroom is very popular in Europe.

Habitat

Hardwood forests in the Middle Atlantic States are conducive to the growth of winecap mushrooms. Other such environments include Europe, New Zealand and Japan.

Natural Cultivation Methods

Winecap mushrooms favor compost piles, sawdust and straw. Assemble beds with douglas fir and alder woodchips inoculated with sawdust spawn to achieve the greatest naturally cultivated winecaps.

Fruiting Cycles and Yield Potentials

A garden kit typically fruits two times with three to four weeks of dormancy in between crops.

Substrates

It is recommended for consumers to use pasteurized straw or sawdust substrates while covering with a coating of microbially rich soil.

Cooking with Winecaps

Using winecap mushrooms in dishes is especially delicious when cooked in lemon juice, wine, nutmeg and fennel.