View Full Version : Extracting tannins from raisins

02-14-2005, 11:48 AM
How long should one leave raisins in to get the tannins? With one batch, I added raisins (about 20 chopped for a 1 gal. batch) to the primary, then siphoned them off when transferring to the secondary. I'm starting to think that wasnt enough time. Anyone care to share their thoughts or experiences?

02-14-2005, 03:09 PM
When I use raisins or other dried fruit I generally let my primary go about 3 or 4 weeks. That's usually plenty of time to get sufficient extraction. But it's not just the tannin you're after, the concentrated grape flavor and high sugar in the raisins also adds a rounder mouthfeel to the mead.



02-14-2005, 07:16 PM
I have my Tupelo mead ready to be racked into a secondary and planned on adding some whole Vanilla beans as a flavoring. I have read that whole beans will add some tannins also ( I used raisins and dates in the primary). Should I be concerned about the too much tannin in my mead by doing this?

02-15-2005, 02:41 PM
No, you'll be fine. If you were using fresh red wine grapes it might be a different story, but I really doubt it. Vanilla that mead baby, and don't spare the bean!



02-15-2005, 02:55 PM
Ok I won't spare the beans! What's the best way to prepare them...slice then scrape and toss them in? I believe I read a previous post where 1 bean per gallon is a good amount.

02-15-2005, 03:18 PM
I just split (slice) the bean lengthwise and then spread the incision a bit. Not sure why you would scrape. Are you suggesting taking all the seeds (inside the bean) out and not using them?

Yeah I have had good results from 1 bean when the beans were high quality. YMMV.

02-15-2005, 04:25 PM
Generally when you're making something like a vanilla custard or ice-cream, creme-brulee, etc. you'll split the bean lengthwise and scrape the innards out for addition to your recipe. In meadmaking you don't need to do so, unless you are posessed by Jaques Peppin and he dominates your will to leave them in the skin and . . . .

Oh....sorry, was that out loud??



02-15-2005, 07:05 PM
Got it guys....no scraping! Thanks for the help and the humor!

03-16-2005, 08:24 AM
How much raisins are people putting in their meads? When I add them, I usually use about a lb for 5 gal. They have a noticable effect at that level.

Any guesses as to how much gravity is - eventually - added per lb of raisins (or other dried fruits)? Difficult to measure.....


03-16-2005, 08:10 PM
Raisins average around 19% sugar (but are low in water content).

This is probably 2 or 3 times the sugar content of most other fruit.

Volume-wise, the addition of raisins isn't as significant as honey.

Roughly, 1 cup of raisins in 1 gallon is about 4 gravity points (about a quarter what honey adds).