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Old 05-10-2013, 03:06 PM   #11
Bluespark
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Matrix, maybe your vanilla beans were old? I used one in a gallon and its VERY prominent. I would think 6 would be approaching extract concentration.

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Old 05-10-2013, 05:24 PM   #12
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I use anywhere from 8-13 6" beans in no more than a liter of pure grain for extraction over 6-12 months. I know when adding vanilla bean to must it depends on when you add it (primary vs secondary), exposure time, age/quality/type of beans, etc. So outcome is quite variable from one batch to the next.

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Old 05-10-2013, 06:52 PM   #13
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Yeah the beans are pretty fickle in terms of extract-ability and presence from bean to bean. But in terms of it being "extract concentration" I wouldn't say that since the proof would need to be much higher than what the must / mead is. I also have heard that vanilla mellows out pretty quick so over-doing its likely fine. All you can do is taste every week or so and determine where you want to be at.

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Old 05-10-2013, 08:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluespark View Post
Matrix, maybe your vanilla beans were old? I used one in a gallon and its VERY prominent. I would think 6 would be approaching extract concentration.
Actually extract concentration is 6 beans to a cup of 35% ABV alcohol. I make vanilla extract for my wife. Trust me they werent old. Vanilla does not lose it's flavor when it get's old. They age it for 2 years. Just if you are doing a 5 gal batch then 6-8 would be a good start. For a single gal, I would go at least 2 maybe 3.

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Old 05-11-2013, 10:35 AM   #15
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Just if you are doing a 5 gal batch then 6-8 would be a good start. For a single gal, I would go at least 2 maybe 3.

Matrix
I know someone will want to know---Would you recommend adding the vanilla beans in primary or once FG has been reached, or a portion in primary & remainder later? I find it does depend on if you are adding to a fruit/spice based must versus going for vanilla only. And if you still have not achieved enough vanilla come bottling time you can add a few drops of quality extract (like our homemade liquid goodness)--tasting trials always recommended.
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Old 05-13-2013, 03:14 PM   #16
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I always recomend adding them to the secondary or tetriary. I like to add them for about a month before it has fully cleared but in the final stages of clearing. Also adding them in with the oak is a good idea too. Kill two bird, one stone. But The vanilla needs to be in longer so I use seperate Hops bags to do so.

The reason for the addition at that time is that there should be a good level of alcohol at that point to actually extract the vanilla. In the primary, not so much. Only add to the primary if you are also planing on adding to secondary.

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Old 05-13-2013, 11:01 PM   #17
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Matrix...just checking as that is my preferred method, so much is lost during primary phase.

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