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hepcat
03-02-2012, 11:18 AM
A couple of questions:

Is it recommended for use in a citrus melomel?

And if yes to that question, and I want to add prior to fermentation, does it matter how long before I pitch the yeast it should be added to the must or can you add it just before pitching the yeast. Thanks!

Chevette Girl
03-02-2012, 11:24 AM
My anecdotal experience with a multi-citrus JAO variation (and the fact that the pectin you buy for jelly making is made from citrus fruit) indicates that yes, it is a good idea to use pectinase for citrus.

According to Luc Volders's Wineblog when he did all kinds of testing with pectinase, it takes a really high amount of alcohol to inhibit it but it doesn't work well during an active fermentation.

Most of the books I've read suggest adding pectinase 24 hours prior to pitching, I usually give it at least 12 even when I'm in a hurry. The time I added it to the finished citrus JAO variant, it took a couple of weeks to do its thing and clear the haze.

hepcat
03-02-2012, 11:36 AM
Thanks so much CG, so, during that waiting period, is it necessary to keep stirring the must to keep the honey from settling out?

And just wondering if anyone has ever added it right before pitching the yeast and what happened/any problem with that?

Also, I have Crosby & Baker,L.t.d. brand (powder) and all it says on the container is:

"Add 1/2 tsp per gallon of fruit wine must before start of fermentation."

hepcat
03-02-2012, 01:12 PM
Looking at other threads there seems to be no general consensus so I'll try to add pectic enzyme at least a couple hours before pitching the yeast and since it will be a couple of days before there is any alcohol present, guessing it will have some of it's desired effect.

Chevette Girl
03-02-2012, 06:21 PM
Thanks so much CG, so, during that waiting period, is it necessary to keep stirring the must to keep the honey from settling out?

And just wondering if anyone has ever added it right before pitching the yeast and what happened/any problem with that?

Also, I have Crosby & Baker,L.t.d. brand (powder) and all it says on the container is:

"Add 1/2 tsp per gallon of fruit wine must before start of fermentation."

Well, the yeast needs its lag time but it's still best to give the pectinase a headstart. I'm sure people have done it, it will EVENTUALLY do its thing. I just work with whole fruit a lot and like to give it the best chance to break down any cells that might release juice before I take my OG reading.

And honey, once it's actually dissolved, shouldn't settle out, if you've got some that's settling, keep stirring it till it's dissolved, the pectinase doesn't care much either way.

brian92fs
03-02-2012, 06:31 PM
I'm making a one gallon test batch now using 100% orange juice - had A LOT of “spare” oranges from our tree out back. I used sulfite then pectin enzyme 36 hours before pitching. By the time I added the yeast, it had settled out crystal clear. Looked a bit odd actually. However, once the yeast got going, the CO2 release kept everything in suspension. They really got going too… took about 4 days to complete primary from a OG of 1.099. It should be finishing up with primary today. I’ll reply to this thread in a week or two to let you know how looked after the yeast dropped out.

Chevette Girl
03-02-2012, 08:24 PM
- had A LOT of “spare” oranges from our tree out back.

"spare oranges", huh... oh well. At least I can get crabapples here.

brian92fs
03-02-2012, 08:43 PM
"spare oranges", huh... oh well. At least I can get crabapples here.

The funny part is that it's not really my tree. Its my neighbor's tree, with half the canopy over my side of the fence ;D

hepcat
03-03-2012, 12:15 AM
I have only used whole fruit-fresh oranges too so far CG, and thanks again for your expert advice! I'll try to give the pectin enzyme at least a few hours before I pitch the yeast.

Loadnabox
03-04-2012, 12:54 PM
I accidentally added some pectic enzyme to my concord pyment minutes before pitching (I had already added earlier but completely spaced things when pitching the yeast)

It doesn't seem to have had much effect and the mead is still clearing very nicely.

fivecats
03-29-2012, 09:41 PM
What is the advantage to adding the pectic enzyme to the fruit before pitching the yeast?

And if it's not added that early, when should it be added? Or how late can it be added?

(I'm sooooo confused now.) ???

wayneb
03-29-2012, 09:46 PM
Pectic enzymes work best before there is any alcohol in the must. They slow way down in the presence of ethanol, so that's why we usually add them 24 hrs or so before yeast pitch. They will continue to work, although really slowly, even if fermentation is complete, so you can safely add them at any time in the process - even if you already have a finished mead that is clouded by pectin haze.

fivecats
03-29-2012, 10:09 PM
Pectic enzymes work best before there is any alcohol in the must. They slow way down in the presence of ethanol, so that's why we usually add them 24 hrs or so before yeast pitch. They will continue to work, although really slowly, even if fermentation is complete, so you can safely add them at any time in the process - even if you already have a finished mead that is clouded by pectin haze.

So, if it's Thursday night now and I'm planning on brewing sometime Saturday morning, adding the pectic enzyme to my fresh squeezed OJ and zest topped with more OJ NOW would be a good idea. Right?

wayneb
03-29-2012, 10:49 PM
Yup. And it also works best at near room temp, so if you add it and then refrigerate the juice, it won't start working until it warms back up. If you're concerned about infections in your OJ developing before you pitch your yeast, you can dose the juice with metabisulphite. A little SO2 will keep nasties from growing in the juice, and if you add an amount similar to what you'd do to stabilize a finished mead it will dissipate between now and Saturday, so once you mix in your honey & water and then pitch the yeast, there won't be enough SO2 to interfere at all with the start of fermentation.

fivecats
03-29-2012, 10:53 PM
Yup. And it also works best at near room temp, so if you add it and then refrigerate the juice, it won't start working until it warms back up. If you're concerned about infections in your OJ developing before you pitch your yeast, you can dose the juice with metabisulphite. A little SO2 will keep nasties from growing in the juice, and if you add an amount similar to what you'd do to stabilize a finished mead it will dissipate between now and Saturday, so once you mix in your honey & water and then pitch the yeast, there won't be enough SO2 to interfere at all with the start of fermentation.

Right.

Er, um... so for 1 1/2 qts of OJ, how much pectic enzyme and metabisulphate should I be adding tonight?

wayneb
03-29-2012, 11:09 PM
Use the same amount of pectic enzyme that the directions tell you to use for 5 gallons. That way, when it is diluted with the rest of the must, it will still be at a concentration that will continue to break down pectins.

As for the sulphite, that should be added for the total amount of juice that you will have "macerating" with the pectic enzyme before you add the honey and water. So, since a quart plus a half is roughly 1/3 of a gallon, and a gallon is 1/5 of a 5 gallon carboy, if you would add 1/4 tsp metabisulphite to 5 gallons for proper antimicrobial action, you'll want to divide that by 15, and add 1/15 of 1/4 of a teaspoon. That's kind of hard to do if you try to do it as a dry measure!

But if you take that 1/4 tsp of metabisulphite powder and dissolve it completely in 15 oz of water, then you can add 1 oz of the sulphite solution to your OJ and that should be enough to keep the nasties away. Still, once you add it, I'd keep the juice in a tightly sealed container until you're ready to mix it with the rest of the must.

The sulphite addition won't interfere with the working of the pectic enzyme.

fivecats
03-29-2012, 11:20 PM
Done!

Thanks again, wayneb. It's much appreciated!