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Old 08-16-2011, 12:53 AM   #21
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I am not trying to rain on this, but I have had a Prickly Pear wine. I dumped that glass. Worst wine ive had and that is saying something. lol

Some winery here in Texas had done a batch and was selling it. Not sure if they ever sold any. Just a word of warning.
Our club served a keg of prickly pear mead at NHC this year. It kicked in less than 1/2 hour; and that's serving 2-3oz at a time.

Used correctly, prickly pear fruit has massive potential.
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Old 08-16-2011, 02:06 AM   #22
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I understand your concern, worst beer I ever drank had malt and hops in it, threw that one out too. There's an outfit in Flagstaff that makes a prickly pear vodka that tastes pretty good, never had a prickly pear wine though. I might have to see what Jack Keller's site says about it.

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I am not trying to rain on this, but I have had a Prickly Pear wine. I dumped that glass. Worst wine ive had and that is saying something. lol

Some winery here in Texas had done a batch and was selling it. Not sure if they ever sold any. Just a word of warning.
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Old 08-16-2011, 02:07 AM   #23
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I'd be willing to trade a box of the prickly pears for a mix of the cascades and zeus. Whatever amount you think might be fair.

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I have Zeus, and cascade that are going to be ready soon. I have willammette, goldings, and mt hood too but they just popped out burrs and are first year plants so I might not get much of those.
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Old 08-16-2011, 04:02 AM   #24
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Sure, I'll see when they are ripe, it should be soon, they are starting to smell nice. But not papery enough to pick yet.

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Old 08-16-2011, 04:17 AM   #25
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How difficult are these to clean of needles? Do you just slice off the skin or do you have to cut the needles out first? They don't look as gnarly as some I've seen.

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Old 08-16-2011, 04:45 AM   #26
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Default getting rid of cactus spines

I've followed other's instructions here on the boards and use barbecue tongs and a propane burner to burn them off.
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f30/pric...ar-mead-34696/

For me the best method I have done is to burn the spines, freeze the fruit then thaw them, put the whole fruit - skin, seeds and all into a food processor and then strain the whole mess with a colander. I have a jelly strainer like this -

that I used to strain the liquids from most of the solids, added campden and added them to my recipe.
Another method that might work is to use a improvised strainer from a Home Depot paint strainer and make something like this?


Your mileage and procedures mayy vary.

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How difficult are these to clean of needles? Do you just slice off the skin or do you have to cut the needles out first? They don't look as gnarly as some I've seen.
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Old 08-16-2011, 05:48 AM   #27
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I put them in a bucket, mash them with my son's old Little League bat and then strain through a couple of cotton towels.
I do a prickly pear mead once in a while, I still have a few bottles from my 1995 batch, and some from the last couple of batches. It doesn't fly off the shelves around here but I do like it.
I'll actually have a good crop this year in spite of 1/4 of my cacti being severely damaged or killed by several days of subzero weather and then a drought of Biblical proportions.

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Old 09-04-2011, 04:36 AM   #28
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Just to follow up. The prickly pears are ripening really nicely. I'll be headed to MO for a week starting September 16th and returning on September 24th. I'll start shipping out fruit that weeek that we get back unless anyone wants them before then? I'll post pictures later this coming week of their readiness.

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Old 09-05-2011, 04:03 AM   #29
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How many are needed for a 5 gallon batch of mead?

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Old 09-05-2011, 04:12 AM   #30
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Pm me your address. I'm picking and drying my hops this week and next week. I'll send you some when I'm done. Looking forward to some prickly pear fruit!

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