Cocoa nibs... Did I use too much whiskey for extracting?

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ConnorBrunton

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First time using cocoa nibs for a beer. I decided to use 16oz of Jack Daniels for 4oz of cocoa nibs. I let it sit for 5 days in the fridge. I transferred the beer after 7 days of fermentaion (chocolate milk stout). I’m starting to think I used too much whiskey after reading some threads. Although, it does smell more like chocolate than whiskey. Anyone have more experience than me that can give advice?
 

bernardsmith

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Hi ConnorBrunton - and welcome. I think that yours is a really good question. I tend to make my own extracts and it depends on why I am making an extract how much alcohol I use to extract the flavors from spices or herbs or nuts and the like. If I am making vanilla extract or almond extract for cooking or baking then, depending on the amount of spices or nuts, I might use 2 cups (about 16 oz) of vodka as the solvent. But if my plan is to add say 4 oz of nibs to a stout or (more likely in my case) to a mead then I might use only enough vodka to cover the nibs (or hazelnuts or whatever). I am not trying to fortify my meads or stouts. I am trying to add a flavor to them, so I want to add as little vodka as possible but as much flavor as I intend. But I am no expert and perhaps others with far more knowledge about making extracts will educate me too.
 

thehaze

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16 oz is more than a half of bottle for just 4 oz, so yes, that was way too much. Last time I used 4.5 oz raw, organic cocoa beans ( I crushed them ) and 6 vanilla pods, which I scraped and chopped in finer bits, in around 5 oz bourbon and there was plenty of room in the jar still. I left it for 3 days in the fridge and added to fermenter. After one week, I bottled.

After 2-8 weeks in the bottle, there were fairly strong vanilla and cocoa/chocolate aromas and flavours in the beer. It was great. They do fade after some extended conditioning. Next time I will use a bit more, but not too much, as cocoa, in whatever form, can lend some of its astringency to the beer.
 

TheBrewBrotha

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For 4oz of nibs you may have used quite a bit. Typically you would add enough alcohol to cover the nibs, giving it a swirl every time you walk pass the jar. I usually let everything soak for about a week. Did you already add the tincture to your stout?
 
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ConnorBrunton

ConnorBrunton

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I did already add it :/ I’m going to let it sit for 2 weeks and bottle. Probably let it carbonate for 3-4 weeks before trying the first one. Oh well, learn from my mistakes.
 

stieg000

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Never soaked my nibs in spirits, usually toss them into the primary. I like being able to control the spirit flavor independently .
 

JDXX1971

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Seriously though I added a good amount to the jar of nibs I soaked for a RIS a few months ago. Probably 10-12 oz or more, I tasted it last week and it needs some more time but is yummy! That was for 4 gallons with 8 oz of nibs and it's all still sitting in there too.
 
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