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Sloe Schnapps

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  • potstillman
    Does that sound good, or just plain weird? Well, I ve just been making up a 25l batch of sloe/damson wine, and instead of throwing the pulp away, thought I d
    Message 1 of 8 , Oct 23, 2002
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      Does that sound good, or just plain weird?

      Well, I've just been making up a 25l batch of sloe/damson wine, and
      instead of throwing the pulp away, thought I'd use it to make a
      secondary wine, and distill that (keep the primary wine as wine).
      While the original wine is still in its last throes of bubbling, the
      secondary wine (just added water and sugar to pulp and ferment out
      for a few days) had low enough SG to try distilling. First freeze-
      distilled (or concentrated) to enhance the flavour (used too much
      water to make 2ndary), then went for it, and ... waheyyyy!!!!

      During distillation, I thought it was a bit crap, but either I shot
      my tastebuds checking the first output, or it needs a bit of time
      to 'relax' or whatever, but a few hours later, it is truly wonderful,
      and I'm now hoping the sloes aren't all gone, so I can go and get
      some more ....

      Just had to tell someone - I love it when a plan comes together.

      Cheers,

      Andy :-)

      (plum wine to plum schnapps turned out brill too, but I will be
      keeping the wine)
    • Robert Stam
      Hi Andy, at what %abv did you start and stop collecting? ... From: potstillman [mailto:potstillman@yahoo.co.uk] Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2002 1:13 PM To:
      Message 2 of 8 , Oct 23, 2002
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        Hi Andy, at what %abv did you start and stop collecting?
        -----Original Message-----
        From: potstillman [mailto:potstillman@...]
        Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2002 1:13 PM
        To: new_distillers@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [new_distillers] Sloe Schnapps


        Does that sound good, or just plain weird? 

        Well, I've just been making up a 25l batch of sloe/damson wine, and
        instead of throwing the pulp away, thought I'd use it to make a
        secondary wine, and distill that (keep the primary wine as wine). 
        While the original wine is still in its last throes of bubbling, the
        secondary wine (just added water and sugar to pulp and ferment out
        for a few days) had low enough SG to try distilling.  First freeze-
        distilled (or concentrated) to enhance the flavour (used too much
        water to make 2ndary), then went for it, and ... waheyyyy!!!!

        During distillation, I thought it was a bit crap, but either I shot
        my tastebuds checking the first output, or it needs a bit of time
        to 'relax' or whatever, but a few hours later, it is truly wonderful,
        and I'm now hoping the sloes aren't all gone, so I can go and get
        some more ....

        Just had to tell someone - I love it when a plan comes together.

        Cheers,

        Andy :-)

        (plum wine to plum schnapps turned out brill too, but I will be
        keeping the wine)




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      • Still Man
        Hi Andy, at what %abv did you start and stop collecting? ... Get a bigger mailbox -- choose a size that fits your needs.
        Message 3 of 8 , Oct 23, 2002
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          Hi Andy, at what %abv did you start and stop collecting?
           
           



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        • Still Man
          Hi Andy, at what %abv did you start and stop collecting? Hi Robert, Good question, no idea. I have a very simple pressure-cooker style potstill. It s
          Message 4 of 8 , Oct 23, 2002
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            Hi Andy, at what %abv did you start and stop collecting?
             
            Hi Robert,
             
            Good question, no idea.  I have a very simple pressure-cooker style potstill.  It's incredibly inefficient, and I have never had reliable temperature readings from it, so I do not bother any more.  I do not have an alcoholmeter (although not from want of trying to get one). i.e. I am distilling by taste, which as far as I'm concerned is what schnapps is all about anyway.
             
            I start collecting after I guess the foreshots have gone - I take the 100-200 ml per 20l wash recommended, scale it down to my pathetic 3 litre max operation (i.e. 30 ml) and throw that away.  I stop collecting at some point during the tails, when it starts tasting what might be described by some as 'funny'.  I identify a common taste I get from all distillations - and think "Oh, it's that taste again, guess it's time to stop", even though it tastes alcoholic.  My final %ABV is determined using a fine-tuned measuring device - my mouth - and I guess it tends to be between 40% and 50%.  If not, I water it a bit.  My measuring device tells me that the stuff coming out when I stop collecting is about 20% or a bit less.  It tells me the initial stuff is very strong, but fails to provide more information than that.
             
            It's not quite as slipshod as that, but very close - by this I mean I have also recently identified tails as giving an oily surface.  I collect in small bits, test each bit for taste, non-oiliness, add it to the bulk, then continue to collect the next bit.  This way I only lose 'a bit', the size of which varies according to how I'm feeling.
             
            The inefficiency of my system (I seem to be losing about half of it to leaks and the fact that I don't keep the tails) suggests I could probably get away with throwing away less foreshots, but I'm not going to risk that ...
             
            Sorry about the long, boring, and answerless answer, but that's sloe schnapps for ya!
             
            Cheers,
             
            Andy
             



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          • Robert Stam
            Sorry, didn t get that. ... From: Still Man [mailto:potstillman@yahoo.co.uk] Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2002 1:33 PM To: new_distillers@yahoogroups.com
            Message 5 of 8 , Oct 23, 2002
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              Sorry, didn't get that.
              -----Original Message-----
              From: Still Man [mailto:potstillman@...]
              Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2002 1:33 PM
              To: new_distillers@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: RE: [new_distillers] Sloe Schnapps

              Hi Andy, at what %abv did you start and stop collecting?
               
               



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            • Aaron Pelly
              ha! I just did an identical run of some mandarin wine, in an apparently identically poor excuse for a pot still. differently though my mandarin schnapps still
              Message 6 of 8 , Oct 23, 2002
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                ha! I just did an identical run of some mandarin wine, in an apparently identically poor excuse for a pot still. differently though my mandarin schnapps still tastes like shit
                -----Original Message-----
                From: Still Man [mailto:potstillman@...]
                Sent: 24 October 2002 13:52
                To: new_distillers@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: RE: [new_distillers] Sloe Schnapps

                Hi Andy, at what %abv did you start and stop collecting?
                 
                Hi Robert,
                 
                Good question, no idea.  I have a very simple pressure-cooker style potstill.  It's incredibly inefficient, and I have never had reliable temperature readings from it, so I do not bother any more.  I do not have an alcoholmeter (although not from want of trying to get one). i.e. I am distilling by taste, which as far as I'm concerned is what schnapps is all about anyway.
                 
                I start collecting after I guess the foreshots have gone - I take the 100-200 ml per 20l wash recommended, scale it down to my pathetic 3 litre max operation (i.e. 30 ml) and throw that away.  I stop collecting at some point during the tails, when it starts tasting what might be described by some as 'funny'.  I identify a common taste I get from all distillations - and think "Oh, it's that taste again, guess it's time to stop", even though it tastes alcoholic.  My final %ABV is determined using a fine-tuned measuring device - my mouth - and I guess it tends to be between 40% and 50%.  If not, I water it a bit.  My measuring device tells me that the stuff coming out when I stop collecting is about 20% or a bit less.  It tells me the initial stuff is very strong, but fails to provide more information than that.
                 
                It's not quite as slipshod as that, but very close - by this I mean I have also recently identified tails as giving an oily surface.  I collect in small bits, test each bit for taste, non-oiliness, add it to the bulk, then continue to collect the next bit.  This way I only lose 'a bit', the size of which varies according to how I'm feeling.
                 
                The inefficiency of my system (I seem to be losing about half of it to leaks and the fact that I don't keep the tails) suggests I could probably get away with throwing away less foreshots, but I'm not going to risk that ...
                 
                Sorry about the long, boring, and answerless answer, but that's sloe schnapps for ya!
                 
                Cheers,
                 
                Andy
                 



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              • Still Man
                It s funny you should mention that - a lot of mine does too, so when one works I am very pleased. Note I thought it was shit at first - as I say, I don t know
                Message 7 of 8 , Oct 24, 2002
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                  It's funny you should mention that - a lot of mine does too, so when one works I am very pleased.  Note I thought it was shit at first - as I say, I don't know if the fresh-from-the-tap stuff needs to settle a bit, or if I had stunned my tastebuds at the beginning, but I nearly threw it away, then decided to leave it just in case.  Good thing, too ...

                  I am also finding that a strong initial taste is important, as otherwise it comes out bland - maybe your mandarin wine was too weak in flavour?  On the other hand, it is possible for the schnapps to taste too strong - I bought a few months ago some professionally-made sloe schnapps, and it's actually very difficult to drink due to the immensely strong taste.  My stuff was much more subtle and much more drinkable.  Note I say 'was' :-(  It was only a trial batch, and it's all gone :-(  Still, plenty of the 2ndary wine left, just gotta find the time :-)

                  Cheers,

                  Andy

                   Aaron Pelly <apelly@...> wrote:

                  ha! I just did an identical run of some mandarin wine, in an apparently identically poor excuse for a pot still. differently though my mandarin schnapps still tastes like shit



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                • Aaron Pelly
                  I was just mucking around to see what would happen. I might try a more scientific approach next time, but then again I probably won t. Bland is not the word
                  Message 8 of 8 , Oct 24, 2002
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                    I was just mucking around to see what would happen. I might try a more scientific approach next time, but then again I probably won't.
                     
                    Bland is not the word for it. More like subtly tasty lubricant/solvent. Then again, as you say, after tasting the output regularly for a couple of hours everything tastes a bit weird. I'll have another go with it later. I have some peel that's been macerating in 90% for a month or so, so I may distil and add that for another experiment.
                    -----Original Message-----
                    From: Still Man [mailto:potstillman@...]
                    Sent: 24 October 2002 20:37
                    To: new_distillers@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: RE: [new_distillers] Sloe Schnapps

                    It's funny you should mention that - a lot of mine does too, so when one works I am very pleased.  Note I thought it was shit at first - as I say, I don't know if the fresh-from-the-tap stuff needs to settle a bit, or if I had stunned my tastebuds at the beginning, but I nearly threw it away, then decided to leave it just in case.  Good thing, too ...

                    I am also finding that a strong initial taste is important, as otherwise it comes out bland - maybe your mandarin wine was too weak in flavour?  On the other hand, it is possible for the schnapps to taste too strong - I bought a few months ago some professionally-made sloe schnapps, and it's actually very difficult to drink due to the immensely strong taste.  My stuff was much more subtle and much more drinkable.  Note I say 'was' :-(  It was only a trial batch, and it's all gone :-(  Still, plenty of the 2ndary wine left, just gotta find the time :-)

                    Cheers,

                    Andy

                     Aaron Pelly <apelly@...> wrote:

                    ha! I just did an identical run of some mandarin wine, in an apparently identically poor excuse for a pot still. differently though my mandarin schnapps still tastes like shit

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