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Jim H
07-30-2013, 10:49 PM
I was wondering if anyone out there had used the vinter's harvest canned fruit bases or purees in their melomels. I'm wondering if they'd be good for a "first melomel"? I'm thinking that I don't want to get bogged down in processing the fruit for my first go at it.

Are these ok to use? Any success with them, out there?

loveofrose
07-30-2013, 11:00 PM
Look in the brewlogs at my "surprise" Blackcurrant melomel.
Worked very well for me and I did everything off the cuff!

fatbloke
07-31-2013, 12:43 AM
Just wondering.......

Because they're sold as "vintners harvest" brand and sold through HBS, do they not attract a "home brew premium"?

Or would it be just as cheap to go and get the same weight in frozen fruit from the frozen fruit/grocery/market type place ?

Midnight Sun
07-31-2013, 03:01 AM
One nice thing about Vinter's Harvest is having fruits available that aren't easily acquired locally in fresh or frozen form. Otherwise, FB's advice is spot on; frozen fruit is cheaper and not much harder (if at all!) to deal with.

Jim H
07-31-2013, 07:55 AM
What's the difference in terms of quantity or weight needed, between the frozen and the VH canned stuff? I imagine that the VH is a bit more concentrated.

loveofrose
07-31-2013, 08:02 AM
The vinters harvest comes in 96 oz (3/4 gallon) cans. In my case, I did not want to deal with punching the fruit down. Also, Blackcurrants are not available in my area. Win. Win.

I used 1 can for 5 gallons. You could use 2, but only for very light flavors like peaches. They all have some sediment, but nothing that floats and needs punching. I am sure fresh fruit is better, but I like easy.

fatbloke
07-31-2013, 12:47 PM
See I fully follow the idea, but how as the puree or extract been treated ?

Does it have pulp in it ? Or is it like a pure juice type ? Does it need pectic enzyme ?

Personally I'd aim for fresh or as LoR points out with them not being available fresh....then frozen. I'd have thought any local communities that have German or Polish links would have them frozen....

You know that they'd just need defrosting and adding, some pectolase etc and leave them in till they've sunk.....

If the VH stuff has pulp/puree in the can then the batch would likely need straining once done, whereas as extract or juice I'd probably be thinking along the lines of a high strength dry traditional batch that's stabilised once finished, then add the extract/juice and then taste followed by back sweetening to taste.....

loveofrose
07-31-2013, 12:59 PM
The vinters harvest does have pulp and is pasteurized. I did not add pectinase and it was clear. I also did not have to strain it as all sediment sunk. Just rack as normal.

No one in their right mind would argue that fresh/frozen fruit would not be better, but Jim (like me for this Blackcurrant melomel) just wants to try an easy melomel to see if it's worth the extra effort (it is by the way). I was just trying to answer his question. I am not in any way saying fresh wouldn't be better if you have the capability. That said, the Blackcurrant melomel I made with VH is damn tasty and I don't regret the simplicity.

fatbloke
07-31-2013, 01:28 PM
The vinters harvest does have pulp and is pasteurized. I did not add pectinase and it was clear. I also did not have to strain it as all sediment sunk. Just rack as normal.

No one in their right mind would argue that fresh/frozen fruit would not be better, but Jim (like me for this Blackcurrant melomel) just wants to try an easy melomel to see if it's worth the extra effort (it is by the way). I was just trying to answer his question. I am not in any way saying fresh wouldn't be better if you have the capability. That said, the Blackcurrant melomel I made with VH is damn tasty and I don't regret the simplicity.
That's bloody marvellous to read.

I was only alluding to fresh/frozen because generally it so much easier to remove the whole fruit debris as you go.

Bollocks! Who gives a toss eh ? If it's turned out good, then that's excellent.

Black currants are my fave summer fruit. Sharp little buggers fresh but a bit of sweetness and they're wonderful.

A taste of Europe in a corner of Texas. Brilliant.......

Jim H
08-01-2013, 06:44 PM
Ok, so this is developing into a plan for my next mead. Which one to get?

For absolute simplicity, I am thinking of using a Vintner's Harvest purees.
See here: http://www.midwestsupplies.com/using-vintners-harvest-fruit-purees.html

No straining, pre-sterilized. It looks like if one were going to make a 5 gallon batch, 2 cans of the 49 oz puree cans can be used. I'd be making a 3 gallon batch, so maybe I am aiming for one can.

Chevette Girl
08-01-2013, 07:30 PM
I have never regretted anything I've done involving raspberries... but if they had red currant I'd tell you to jump on that. It's one of the best wines I make and also works well as a mel.

Jim H
08-01-2013, 10:01 PM
I have never regretted anything I've done involving raspberries... but if they had red currant I'd tell you to jump on that. It's one of the best wines I make and also works well as a mel.

Unfortunately, no red currant. But, I was wavering between peach, raspberry and blackberry.

Chevette -- what's your take on blackberry or peach? I am guessing blackberry would be more tannic than others, and peach might be too weak?

What kind of honey would you reach for first to make your raspberry melomel?

I've never actually tasted a melomel, so I am trying to develop a mental-taste for it, to try to understand the kinds of flavors/scents that the different fruit bring. In fact, the only meads I've tasted at all are the two batches that I've made myself in the last year. I kind of like the scent that wildflowers bring to the traditionals I've made, but I don't know if that kind of honey would work best with a melomel.

Chevette Girl
08-01-2013, 11:05 PM
Blackberry is probably the fruit I have used most often in a mel, it's my favourite JAO variation. But I don't use all that much and am not sure how it would compete with honey.

Been meaning to try peach, just haven't gotten to it yet.

I don't have a wide local honey selection myself (clover and goldenrod and every now and then, wildflower) so I'm not sure what to suggest. They'll probably all make a nice mel.