Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Discussions of fruits, veggies and grains other then just mashing

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Bushman » Sun Sep 20, 2020 5:15 am

Currently at the canal picking oysters and clams on the beach but next weekend is our annual cider making out on my friends property in the San Juan Islands. Be a four day event.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Fredistiller » Sun Sep 20, 2020 9:34 am

I'm back home. Tomorrow... back to work!

I'll give you a summary of the visit of the Groult distillery in Calvados.

The visit was great, the property is stunning and the people were very, very kind. The wife of the distiller guided us into all the process.

This are the facts that attracted my attention:
-They use only spontaneous fermentation. No selected yeasts.
-The fermentation batches are outside, so subject to t° variations.
-Fermentations are normally from October to December (quite cold) and can go up to 9-10 month.

Unfortunately, the master distiller was away. But this is what his wife told us about distillation:
-They discard the "foreshots" of the stripping run. They start to collect when the liquid is clear like water, because the firsts litres are creamy white (??)
-They make their cuts between 80 and 55 abv during spirit run. Average : 70abv.
-55 to 14 goes to the next spirit run.
-14 to 0 goes to the next stripping run.

Ageing process (copied from their site):

The perpetual blend

For our traditional range of Calvados, we have historically used the "perpetual" (or "solera") blending method : our barrels are never replaced and completely emptied, in order to keep a base of very old Calvados for each cuvée. The age mentioned on the label corresponds to the youngest vintage in the blend.

We regularly transfer Calvados from one barrel to another, which develop ventilation and oxidation of our spirits. This aging method as well as the use of very old barrels (low in tannins) allows us to produce very fine and fruity Calvados.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by stillanoob » Sun Sep 20, 2020 11:17 am

Thanks Fred! I just did a cut and paste of that into a .txt for future reference.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Sun Sep 20, 2020 3:24 pm

Bushman wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 5:15 am
Currently at the canal picking oysters and clams on the beach but next weekend is our annual cider making out on my friends property in the San Juan Islands. Be a four day event.
I'm looking forward to pictures and hearing about that Bushman. I've been so busy with non fruit stuff that I'm having apple withdrawals.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Bph » Wed Sep 23, 2020 5:58 am

Just finished up pureeing 30-40# of dogwood fruit and 20# of apples I had in the freezer. Put them in a big fermenter and added 3 gallons if water with 7# of sugar melted in it. Pitched 3 packs of e-1118 ... The must, or mash, or whatever tasted good so I'm hopeful something good will come out of the still. On a side note I will be freezing all my apples in the future. Once they are thawed I could practically juice them by hand. No extra water needed to blend them up. Kinda magical really. So for anyone who dosent already id try it next time. Its worth fighting with the wife over.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:05 am

Bph wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 5:58 am
On a side note I will be freezing all my apples in the future. Once they are thawed I could practically juice them by hand. No extra water needed to blend them up. Kinda magical really. So for anyone who dosent already id try it next time. Its worth fighting with the wife over.
I've tried that and I've tried pressing apples, then freeze them, then press them again. I found the extra juice that the apples yield after pressing took flavor away overall so I quit the practice. I will say that yes it makes them easy to process and yield is increased but the overall quality of the juice suffers and it takes a lot of time and space.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Bph » Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:27 am

Hmm. Hadnt thought abput that. Well I'll set my sights back on a fruit press. Had me looking a deep freezers I cant afford for a min. Lol.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by stillanoob » Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:35 am

A good press isn't cheap either but well worth it. If you get a good one it will last forever.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Fredistiller » Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:12 am

I don't have a press...yet. But it's definitely on my list for next fruit season. This year, I looked around and I found some unpicked apple trees on my way to work. I was asking myself how/where do people preserve all theses apples in waiting for "press day"?
And also looking for a bigger freezer. Missus isn't really happy with the current freezer situation where food got 1 out of 5 drawers and berries 4 out of 5! :mrgreen:

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:17 am

Tummydoc wrote:
Sat Sep 19, 2020 8:37 pm
Must have been a Pappy VanWinkle burger!
The burgers are wagyu beef, topped with Wyke farms cheddar cheese, bacon from free range pigs fed an exclusive diet of hazel nuts, Chrokee purple tomatoes, pink radicchio (lettuce), shaved black truffle, creme fraiche and a sprinkle of saffron and served with a side of La Bonnotte potato fries cooked in duck fat.



Actually the burgers were technically only about $50 but it costs $250 to make it through the gauntlet of slot machines between the front door and the restaurant :crazy:
Last edited by cranky on Wed Sep 23, 2020 7:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:30 am

A press doesn't need to be expensive, mine certainly isn't. There are lots of ways to make one if you look around this site and youtube and various other sites like instructables.com

Bushman uses a harbor freight press
https://homedistiller.org/forum/viewtop ... 83&t=51537

And Jimbo made one out of 2x4s
https://homedistiller.org/forum/viewtop ... 83&t=32309

My own press is very similar to jimbo's only made out of 4x4s that I happened to have on hand.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:36 am

Fredistiller wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:12 am
I don't have a press...yet. But it's definitely on my list for next fruit season. This year, I looked around and I found some unpicked apple trees on my way to work. I was asking myself how/where do people preserve all theses apples in waiting for "press day"?
I keep mine in my garage in buckets, or shed if I'm hiding them from my wife, or truck, of just sitting in the shade somewhere.

Most apples will keep 2 weeks or more with no issues. Early season apples tend to go bad more quickly than late season and a few varieties like Vista Bella have to be dealt with within a week of picking but most will keep just fine if kept in the shade. It helps to know your apples and when they come ripe so you can plan accordingly.
Fredistiller wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:12 am
And also looking for a bigger freezer. Missus isn't really happy with the current freezer situation where food got 1 out of 5 drawers and berries 4 out of 5! :mrgreen:
I go through that too but technically berries are food :ebiggrin:

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Bushman » Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:42 am

With Gale winds our trip out to the island to do our annual cider making has been postponed for one week.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Fredistiller » Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:54 pm

[/quote]

Most apples will keep 2 weeks or more with no issues. Early season apples tend to go bad more quickly than late season and a few varieties like Vista Bella have to be dealt with within a week of picking but most will keep just fine if kept in the shade. It helps to know your apples and when they come ripe so you can plan accordingly. [/quote]

Do you press every 2-3weeks then? Or wait until everything is picked and then press? I don't get it quite well.

[/quote]I go through that too but technically berries are food :ebiggrin:[/quote]

I'll try to explain it that way... :econfused:

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Corsaire » Thu Sep 24, 2020 3:47 am

Fredistiller wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 9:34 am
-They discard the "foreshots" of the stripping run. They start to collect when the liquid is clear like water, because the firsts litres are creamy white (??)
I've read about this, it was called a demisting test. Basically your fores clean out the oily tails residue from the past run. In our small setups the amounts are probably not high enough to turn the fores milky white.

Which distiller did you visit? I'm thinking of going to Normandy next month.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Bph » Thu Sep 24, 2020 4:20 am

I got bored and read this whole thread yesterday at the dentist. I was having a bothersome tooth extracted and it took the dr a lot longer than I hoped. Apt was at 2 got out around 5:30. So I had lots of time to stare at my phone. What a thread! Tons of good info in here. Thanks to everyone who has had a part in it. Gonna go check out these choke cherries today. Of course now that I plan to use them I probably wont find them again.... But one good thing about this whole no job situation and half day school for the kids is lots of time for the woods. Wish I could make a living as a forager but in my experiance its pretty easy to make gas money but next to impossible to run your house hold. And people are wierd this year. Never been turned down so much when asking if I could pick mushrooms out of folks yard. I watched close to 20# of chants go bad last month cause the guy didnt want me in his yard or whatever. And no one including myself was open during ramp season so I had to sell them all to a buddy with a booth at the farmers market for half price. I normally sell to chefs for 14$ a # or straigt to a plate for basically pure profit. Sorry for the ramble. Had a cup of coffee and a pain killer from the dentist. Got me kinda chatty with no one to talk too lol. Long story short gonna go hunt the last fruit I know of this year. I did meet a guy that has 26 blue berry bushes and said he wouldnt mind if I came and picked them next year so that should be cool. I have a spot way up the mnt but the berries are so small and the bears are so big this sounds like a much easier score.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Fredistiller » Thu Sep 24, 2020 7:10 am

Corsaire wrote:
Thu Sep 24, 2020 3:47 am
Fredistiller wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 9:34 am
-They discard the "foreshots" of the stripping run. They start to collect when the liquid is clear like water, because the firsts litres are creamy white (??)
I've read about this, it was called a demisting test. Basically your fores clean out the oily tails residue from the past run. In our small setups the amounts are probably not high enough to turn the fores milky white.

Which distiller did you visit? I'm thinking of going to Normandy next month.
His name is Groult. In the "pays d'Auge".

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Bph » Thu Sep 24, 2020 7:39 am

Found the choke cherries but they are not ripe. But I had almost forgot about muscidines! Saw some way up in the trees just got to figure out how I can get to them. There were some on the ground so I reckon they are ready.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Thu Sep 24, 2020 8:46 am

Fredistiller wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:54 pm
cranky wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:36 am
Most apples will keep 2 weeks or more with no issues. Early season apples tend to go bad more quickly than late season and a few varieties like Vista Bella have to be dealt with within a week of picking but most will keep just fine if kept in the shade. It helps to know your apples and when they come ripe so you can plan accordingly.
Do you press every 2-3weeks then? Or wait until everything is picked and then press? I don't get it quite well.
Because my apple season begins in early July and ends around December 1st and due to limitations in equipment in my case I press when I either have enough apples or enough time...except in the case of Vista Bellas which need processed immediately.

I need a minimum of 100 lbs of apples to fire up my chopper but prefer to have 300#s or more, which I can usually easily get from a single tree and usually takes about an hour to pick.

My chopper is crazy fast but my press can only handle something like 150#s per pressing and it takes me 30min to an hour per pressing so at most I can handle a maximum of 2,500#s in a day...theoretically. In real life I tend to have a lot going on and at most can handle about 800#s in a day. I can often pick 600-800#s at a time off the more mature trees I pick so usually I will pick one day, or weekend and press the next.

My old method with my 3 gallon press was slow but worked. I would pick a bucket or two of apples a day, process the apples with a food processor one or two buckets at a time and press them in the little press. It was time consuming because a bucket of apples produces only about 1.5 gallons of juice but pressing 2 buckets of apples a day over several moths adds up to a lot of juice.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Fredistiller » Fri Sep 25, 2020 1:19 am

cranky wrote:
Thu Sep 24, 2020 8:46 am
Fredistiller wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:54 pm
cranky wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:36 am
Most apples will keep 2 weeks or more with no issues. Early season apples tend to go bad more quickly than late season and a few varieties like Vista Bella have to be dealt with within a week of picking but most will keep just fine if kept in the shade. It helps to know your apples and when they come ripe so you can plan accordingly.
Do you press every 2-3weeks then? Or wait until everything is picked and then press? I don't get it quite well.
Because my apple season begins in early July and ends around December 1st and due to limitations in equipment in my case I press when I either have enough apples or enough time...except in the case of Vista Bellas which need processed immediately.

I need a minimum of 100 lbs of apples to fire up my chopper but prefer to have 300#s or more, which I can usually easily get from a single tree and usually takes about an hour to pick.

My chopper is crazy fast but my press can only handle something like 150#s per pressing and it takes me 30min to an hour per pressing so at most I can handle a maximum of 2,500#s in a day...theoretically. In real life I tend to have a lot going on and at most can handle about 800#s in a day. I can often pick 600-800#s at a time off the more mature trees I pick so usually I will pick one day, or weekend and press the next.

My old method with my 3 gallon press was slow but worked. I would pick a bucket or two of apples a day, process the apples with a food processor one or two buckets at a time and press them in the little press. It was time consuming because a bucket of apples produces only about 1.5 gallons of juice but pressing 2 buckets of apples a day over several moths adds up to a lot of juice.
Thanks for your long answer!
Just a question though, do you pasteurize your juice, or ferment in (a lot of )different fermenter each time you press or add the new juice to you fermentation?

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Fri Sep 25, 2020 9:25 am

Fredistiller wrote:
Fri Sep 25, 2020 1:19 am
Thanks for your long answer!
Just a question though, do you pasteurize your juice, or ferment in (a lot of )different fermenter each time you press or add the new juice to you fermentation?
That's another "depends" answer.

My preference is to not pasteurize. I have a lot of fermenters, a 55 gallon barrel, 30 gallon barrel, 12 gallon carboy, 10 gallon stainless steel coffee dispensers, 7 gallon carboy and numerous 6 & 5 gallon carboys and both Imperial and US gallon jugs . A pressing of 300#s of apples will produce somewhere between 17 and 23 gallons. My preference is to fill carboys as necessary and top up whatever isn't full when juice becomes available. One thing to be aware of is that unpasteurized juice will foam up in the first week of fermenting so you have to leave at least a gallon of headspace.

I don't really like to ferment in anything larger than 7 gallons because one year I nearly lost 10 gallons of cider due to vinegar. It is worth noting that even though it had 3 inches of mother on top and was a fine vinegar I distilled most of it anyway and it made a fine brandy with no vinegar notes.

On rare occasions I will pasteurize but I do it extremely carefully. I raise the temperature fairly quickly to 170f and as soon as it reaches it cool it down as quickly as I can. Apple juice only requires a couple of seconds at 170f to be fully pasteurized and the more time it is hot the more flavor you lose.

Actually boiling the juice is the absolute worst thing you can do to it. Boiling it will make your hard earned juice taste like regular old cheap store bought apple juice, it will lose body, flavor and nutrients the yeast could be using and the final brandy also suffers. That's not to say that it wouldn't be good brandy, it just wouldn't be as good as it could be.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Fri Sep 25, 2020 9:27 am

Bushman wrote:
Wed Sep 23, 2020 11:42 am
With Gale winds our trip out to the island to do our annual cider making has been postponed for one week.
I saw those warnings. Fall has defiantly arrived and as usual I'm not ready for it :roll:

Looks like next week should be a good week though :D

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Grappa-Gringo » Fri Sep 25, 2020 10:18 am

Cranky-- with all the wind and rain coming our way I've got to get the grapes picked prior to them falling....I'll be singing in the rain....lol
They say, "you are what you eat"... Then I'm fast, easy and cheap!

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Fredistiller » Fri Sep 25, 2020 11:21 am

Thanks again for your answer Cranky!

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Fri Sep 25, 2020 11:27 am

Grappa-Gringo wrote:
Fri Sep 25, 2020 10:18 am
Cranky-- with all the wind and rain coming our way I've got to get the grapes picked prior to them falling....I'll be singing in the rain....lol
I didn't think grapes were as susceptible as apples. I always worry about the apples prior to the storms this time of year. At my house we can get winds as high as 50mph but for some reason the apple trees seem to handle it pretty well. I do often think about staking tarps down just before the big winds so I can get the windfall and process them.

Yesterday I drove by the black apple and it has started dropping. It will generally hang onto them til late November but I'm thinking maybe I'll see about picking them early.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Fri Sep 25, 2020 11:28 am

Fredistiller wrote:
Fri Sep 25, 2020 11:21 am
Thanks again for your answer Cranky!
Your welcome.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Bushman » Thu Oct 01, 2020 2:10 pm

Heading out early tomorrow unless there is a lot of fog to the islands for four days of apple cider making.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Thu Oct 01, 2020 4:43 pm

Bushman wrote:
Thu Oct 01, 2020 2:10 pm
Heading out early tomorrow unless there is a lot of fog to the islands for four days of apple cider making.
I'm looking forward to hearing about how it goes.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by Bushman » Thu Oct 01, 2020 4:45 pm

cranky wrote:
Thu Oct 01, 2020 4:43 pm
Bushman wrote:
Thu Oct 01, 2020 2:10 pm
Heading out early tomorrow unless there is a lot of fog to the islands for four days of apple cider making.
I'm looking forward to hearing about how it goes.
I’ll try to take pictures of the process. Think we may have 8 people picking and processing which is double what we had in the past.

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Re: Lets get carried away with fruity goodness

Post by cranky » Fri Oct 02, 2020 7:41 am

Bushman wrote:
Thu Oct 01, 2020 4:45 pm
cranky wrote:
Thu Oct 01, 2020 4:43 pm
Bushman wrote:
Thu Oct 01, 2020 2:10 pm
Heading out early tomorrow unless there is a lot of fog to the islands for four days of apple cider making.
I'm looking forward to hearing about how it goes.
I’ll try to take pictures of the process. Think we may have 8 people picking and processing which is double what we had in the past.
With 8 people you should be able to get a whole lot of cider pressed :D

I hope all this fog doesn't cause a problem. At my house we have been socked in since yesterday although I haven't been hearing many fog horns.

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