Calling all Cider makers, Adjunct junkies and Fruitologist!
I'm making a Lychee Berlierweisse atm and having second thoughts about how to prepare this fruit for the fermenter.
So last night I made a puree out of a can of Lychee added some water and left it overnight in the fridge to see if the pulp will drop clear, much like hops. Disappointingly it hasn't, in fact some stayed at the top.
I use a closed transfer system between the fermenter and keg (gravity fed via and liquid post), and I'm sure it would have clogged up to buggery at the tap let alone the dip tube in the keg.
1. Whole fruit (much less flavour extraction) - Free ball in fermenter 2. Puree + Pectinase + Hop bag 3. Puree + Pectinase + MTB Freeze extraction add juice to fermenter 4. Puree into a finer consistency + Pectinase (Will this help to drop the beer clear?)
Brewno_Marz was telling me that he has been fruiting his sours in the keg, using a stocking to contain the fruit. They get fruitier as you drink your way through the keg.
It’s the easiest way I could work out how fruit a kettle sour beer and free up the fermenter at the same time. Bonus of self carbonation too (I assumed 8% total sugars, so more than enough to carb a keg in 1kg of fruit, so cracked the PRV a couple of times in first 48hrs to mitigate over-carbing). The reason it gets fruitier as you drink, is because I’m impatient and can’t wait more then a week or so to get the beer on tap. Now the wife has fruit flavoured stockings too...another bonus!
Would adding pectinase into the puree help with haze?
I checked the puree again this morning (48 hours of cold crash), it still hasn't drop clear, some have sunken, but most of the pulp are still in suspension, so I suspect some fruits take much longer or maybe all fruits.
Keg hop seemed like a good idea, but the sugars in the puree is a concern. I would also not puree it to minimise the haze and dip tube blockage.
Pectinase helps with pectin haze however AFAIK it won't help to drop out the bulk of fruit itself - but a bit of research tells me lychees don't contain pectins so that won't be a problem for you. Happy to be corrected there. Even if pectins were a factor they aren't a negative inclusion in your beer, they contribute to viscosity if that's what you're after.
I suggest you puree it for maximum extraction of sugars and flavour, freeball in the fermenter, and give it time. Even raspberry (a notoriously buoyant fruit) drops out eventually; a week at cold crash temps before pulling out any beer ought to handle it. I currently have a raspberry sour going which I've just pulled a sample from, via the floating diptube. Just needed time. Worst case scenario is that the beer post gets clogged and you have to remove & clean it out, CC for another week, and try again. It'll drop out eventually.
Your fermenter type does factor in though, what are you using? If a standard plastic fermenter with spigot, you could prop it up and tilt the fermenter backward slightly, encouraging settling toward the back. Same approach as with dry hopping there.
ed: i'm obliged to plug my freeze extraction method too, since it removes solids as a side benefit, I think that'd work too and eliminate the majority of your problem - but you'd want to up your fruit by 25-50% to account for the losses (ie sugars and flavours left behind in the ice)
My fruited kettle sours are bright after a week or so in the fridge at the end of fermentation. I use a MJ SS urn-style fermenter with a Kegland false bottom, fruit is never blended or pureed just tossed in loose.
I draw off the start and the end of the run into bottles and keg the rest. This is the first bottle out of the FV from a recent batch.
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