Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

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Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby Fishkiller68 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 10:41 am

Hey all,

I am going to put together a recipe and make a brandy out of Maui Gold Pineapples. Now these pinapples are a hybrid pineapple that has much higher concentration of sugar and a lower acidity level. This is going to be expensive but hey it's worth a try. So here is what I am thinking. I am going to make a 15 gallon wash using 8 Maui gold pineapples. I was thinking I would put them in a blender and puree the poop out of them and then add them into a pot of water and boil them to extract as much sugar and flavor as I can. Then I was thinking of adding 10lb or so of Torbinado sugar, which is sugar that has a little bit of Molasses left in it, to kick up the alochol % while adding a little bit more sweetness to it as well. Then I would run it through my reflux still minus some packing to try to preserve some of the pineapple / Torbinado flavors.

What do you think?

The company the does distill Maui Gold pineapples on Maui has a winery juice their pineapples for them and then the make Vodka out of it. I don't have the luxury of a Winery that would do that for me and think a brandy would be so much better.. lol.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby der wo » Mon Apr 17, 2017 10:58 am

When I think brandy, I think fruits only. No sugar and above all no or as little water as possible.

But of course what you plan will work. But it's not a real brandy IMO and will taste less pineapple like.
But why cooking? Blend them, add sugar and water and finally yeast.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby Fishkiller68 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:25 am

I was thinking the boiling would be good for breaking down the pineapple even more and releasing more of the sugars for fermentation and for killing any natural yeast that may be on the fruit. Do you think it would adversely affect the fermentation?
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby der wo » Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:33 am

Are grapes cooked to make wine? No. When you would cook it, it would evaporate some of the flavors. Cooking is sometimes recommended with very hard fruits like quince, but athough I never mashed pineapples, I am sure it works fine without here.
Yes of course, bacterias. So perhaps lower the pH a bit with citric acid (and perhaps add a buffer too) before pitching the yeast and distill it soon after the fermentation has finished.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby MDH » Mon Apr 17, 2017 12:04 pm

I wouldn't acidify pineapple. It's very acidic as it is. I don't even like to eat raw pineapple much of the time, as it's both too sweet and also far too acidic.

My own personal route through this would be to blend the flesh thoroughly with chlorine-free water, stir out any excess bubbles of oxygen. Check the pH - if it is below 3.5 or so, bring it up to around 4.3 with the addition of water, then proceed to ferment using wild yeasts (let it begin to ferment by itself) in a well airlocked carboy or fermenting vessel. Keep the ferment nice and warm (No trouble in Hawaii I presume). Once it finishes, immediately distill it, as Der Wo suggested.

If you want good flavor, avoid columns. Do the second distillation through just a basic pot very slowly, keep around 30-40% as your hearts, then proof it down with rainwater or something else very clean to about 50% and age it in a glass carboy with a snug lid for at least six months.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby Fishkiller68 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 12:33 pm

der wo -- Ok, that make sense, I will not cook it then. I will just blend it and add a little of the Turbinado sugar to get more of the sweetness and to boost the alcohol content. These pineapples are very expensive so I'm trying to keep the number of them down. They are being shipped to me in California from Maui.

MDH - This kind of Pineapple is a hybrid called Maui Gold. It has a much higher sugar content then standard pineapples and a much lower acidity. So I may have to increase the acidity if I am not going to boil to kill bacteria / wild yeast. I may try to get the distillers yeast going faster to create a CO2 environment quickly to stop any natural yeast or bacteria from starting first. From what I understand, this pineapple variety will actually start fermenting on it's own if not picked fast enough..


I was thinking of running my re-flux as a pot still on this batch to try to get as much flavor as I can for the pineapple brandy.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby der wo » Mon Apr 17, 2017 12:42 pm

Making fruit brandy is always expensive, except you pick yourself for free.
I would use the column. Especially if you want to do single runs. To keep out the tails. But it's up to you, you have two opinions now.

BTW, every fruit will start to ferment without yeast. :wink:
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby Fishkiller68 » Mon Apr 17, 2017 12:46 pm

Here is some information on the Pineapple variety I am going to use.

http://pineapplemaui.com/pineappleshop/about-us/


Really, Use the longer column? just less packing? How would you do it?
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby der wo » Mon Apr 17, 2017 12:54 pm

With packing.
I would concentrate and draw off some fores and collect some small heads jars. Then run it in potstill mode (with a CM shut down the reflux condenser, with a LM open the needle valve) until the abv drops to a certain point (somewhere 65-70%abv. I decide during the run). Here I try to hold the abv, but start soon to collect small samples and decide later what's hearts and what's tails.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby MDH » Mon Apr 17, 2017 2:49 pm

Fishkiller68 wrote:This kind of Pineapple is a hybrid called Maui Gold. It has a much higher sugar content then standard pineapples and a much lower acidity.


Interesting. You learn something new every day. If you get a pH reading of raw juice, please let us know how it looks.

Clostridium and other spoilage bacteria are inhibited at a pH below 4.7, so if the juice is already more acidic than that, you're good to go, and may not need to acidify.

For the record, eau de vie mashes like lower ABV, since the goal of eau de vie is pure fruit flavor and not too many of the volatile acids and higher alcohols produced by yeast in strong alcohol. I would try to aim your alcohol potential at 6-7%, ideally. If your still is very small, only 8%.

If you're going for a domesticated yeast strain and don't want to try with wild yeast, then I would pick either Red Star Cote de Blancs or Lalvin K1.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby NZChris » Mon Apr 17, 2017 4:23 pm

I know of a pineapple venture that went belly up because they couldn't get the flavor into the bottle despite having a very expensive SS column still and professed 'expert' distiller teaching them how to run it. I wasn't around at the time and I don't know what things they tried.

Adding sugar of any description dilutes the pineapple flavor and you are going to have enough trouble capturing it already. If you feel you must use it, ferment it separately and blend it later.
Some of the volatile flavor components will come off very early in the distillation and some won't come over until quite late, so you are going to have to put your clever hat on when distilling and doing your final selection.

I have put pineapple in my gin head while running gin, but never tasted it in the finished product.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby MDH » Tue Apr 18, 2017 8:27 am

Sometimes, aging an eau de vie will return flavor that otherwise seemed like it was lost. I had this experience with Santa Rosa plum and Marechal Foch grape. Both were neutral and uninteresting as a new distillate, and slowly gained all of their flavor back as they aged.

With pineapple, you could just take neutral white spirit with its head cuts already made - so it's plenty soft and drinkable - and put it back in the still with crushed pineapple, and distill again. You will not need to make cuts, so you might get all the flavor you are looking for.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby piperdave » Tue Apr 18, 2017 11:25 am

Pineapples also have a proteolytic enzyme in called bromelain so I'm not sure if that would affect yeast health or not. Something to consider.

The enzyme is heat labile so heating it would break it down.

EDIT: after checking the interweb a bit it seems pineapple juice is quite commonly used for fermentation so I guess the yeast can put up with whatever is in there.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby Bvritr » Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:17 pm

I havnt tried making a brandy from them yet but have dropped a few chunks in finished product. I will say that Maui pineapple is the best in the world to eat though if you ever get the chance. I mighr just be alittle bit biased though
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby NZChris » Thu Apr 20, 2017 12:11 am

I have eaten pineapple that would have been grown for the failed venture and they were the nicest pineapples I have ever tasted. Unfortunately, the project was dead and gone and the equipment sold off before I got a chance to put my oar in.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby Fishkiller68 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:35 pm

The Distillery I went to in Maui owns the Maui Gold Plantation on the Island as well and has a winery juice the pineapples for them and then ferments them and distills them for Vodka in large glass stills they designed. I was curious why they never tried making a brandy with it and thought it sounded tasty since the pineapples taste so good and are more sweet and less acidic then others.

I'm thinking now that I may just make a rum with the turbinado sugar and then run the rum through pureed Maui Gold Pineapples to get the flavor since Brandy seems really difficult to do.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby NZChris » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:14 pm

You can make a cocktail with rum, pineapple juice and a slice of lime and bypass the bother of trying to catch a pineapple in a bottle. This is kind of like what I do with feijoa, another name for pineapple guava. Because it is so difficult to make a brandy that is easily identifiable as feijoa, I use my failed attempts at brandy to make cocktails using feijoa drinks from the supermarket.
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby Fishkiller68 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:49 pm

These pineapples are had to come by and don't last long. So I would need to catch it in a bottle to make it last or just get really drunk while I have them.. :D
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Re: Maui Gold Pineapple Brandy

Postby NZChris » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:35 pm

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