Melomel - Whole Fruit vs. Juice vs. Puree?

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

jalopy19

Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2015
Messages
23
Reaction score
5
I have recently been researching melomel recipes to try to gauge the general "zeitgeist". Some add whole fruit (as seen sometimes with blueberries/blackberries/oranges etc.); some use canned; some juice; some puree.

I recently started a blackberry melomel in which I froze the fruit, thawed, brought to 180 degrees F in in muslin bag, squeezed the juice out, cooled and added. The amount of leftover seeds/berry cores was surprising to me.

Anyone have thoughts on the advantages/disadvantages of each method?
 

fuelish

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 26, 2013
Messages
941
Reaction score
147
Location
Foothills of the Great Smoky Mtns
Juicing or pureeing your own fruit might be seen as "best," but there's added work involved and more losses when racking compared to using prejuiced fruit. With prejuiced (i.e.storebought juice), you need to watch for added ingredients (sometimes other fruits as well, sometimes added preservatives which you don't want inhibiting your ferment....vitamin C/ascorbic acid/pateurized is fine)...freezing/thawing fruit is a good idea, the fruit breaks down when thawing, you don't really need to crush them when adding) I typically go with juices in primary, and augment with fruits in secondary, have no experience juicing/pureeing my own, am trying to strike a balance between being lazy and being lazier, I guess ;)
 

gratus fermentatio

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2008
Messages
13,493
Reaction score
4,054
Location
Montana
The problem with puree is that there is a LOT of sediment & therefore more loss of liquid during racking. The problem with actual fruit is that it's best to use it in a bucket fermentor with a mesh sack to contain it; but if you want to use it in a carbouy during secondary, you need to chop it & add it without the sack, which adds sediment & reduces the liquid during racking. Juice is very easy to use, you can add it to either primary or secondary/tertiary, no crushing, chopping, or mesh sack needed, very little added sediment & fairly easy to get locally. Problem with juice is that most recipes call for actual fruit by weight & there is no easy way to calculate how much juice by volume equals X amount of fruit by weight.
Regards, GF.
 
OP
J

jalopy19

Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2015
Messages
23
Reaction score
5
Thanks. Interesting point about juice. I also always wonder how much sugar per volume juice if it's extracted from fruit.
 

DarrinVH

Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2015
Messages
11
Reaction score
1
Ive got 5 gallons of raspberry melomel fermenting now for 3 weeks as of today. I used 3 pounds of honey per gallon and 3 pounds of raspberry puree.

OG 1.124.... curious to see how it ends up .
 

WVMJ

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2012
Messages
1,555
Reaction score
192
Location
Karnage
Its not really one form vs the other. With fresh fruit you have total control over how much flavor goes in by adjusting the fruit amount because you know exactly how much fruit you put in. With juices and purees in a jar you have just lost some control, how watered down is it, what additives, sugar etc have been added. Some people like plain simple juice because its easier to work with. The real question is which one make the best quality for you vs the amount of work you put into it. A steamer might be a good option for you, you can say how much fruit gets used but juice it easy in a steamer. Also with most fresh fruit no need to cook it at all, if you are concerned about contamination a little potssium metabisufite takes care of it without altering the fruit flavor. WVMJ
 
Top