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Nut mead

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BernardSmith

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Planning on making a chestnut mead and originally was thinking of simply adding the chestnuts to both the primary and the secondary but now I am considering making a chestnut extract (using vodka to extract the flavor) and adding the extract to the mead about two or three months before I bottle.
Has anyone used extracts to flavor their meads? I am thinking of using about 1.5 lbs of roasted nuts (chopped) together with a vanilla bean sliced and halved to a volume of vodka that about doubles the volume and allowing the nuts to steep in the vodka for about a month... but my question is this: Does anyone have any idea how large a volume of extract I should be adding to a gallon of mead? Obviously (or not) I will be bench testing this but can I expect to add say 1000 cc (a quart) of the extract to a gallon or will this be more like 50 cc (a light 10% of a pint). Bottom line: I am looking for a rich chestnut flavored mead. Thoughts? Thanks
 
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Jericurl

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I do add homemade extracts to my stuff all the time.
I just added homemade cherry pit extract to my cherry mead. I added 12 ounces to mine and it gives it a nice flavor. If you want a heavy flavor I don't think I would add any less than that.
 

BernardSmith

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Thanks Jericurl. You added 12 fluid ounces of the extract or you used 12 ozs of pits? You think 1.5 lbs of chestnuts would be sufficient or too much when it comes to extracting flavor with 40% ABV vodka?
 

Jericurl

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I had 2 or 3 half pint jars stuffed with pits, then poured vodka over them for ..probably about a month or two. Then strained and combined them and it came out to fill a 12 oz jar.

I would imagine it would be plenty, but I've never done nuts before so you'll just have to taste as you go.
 

BernardSmith

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I guess as long as I bench test the worst that can happen is that I will need to add some more nuts to produce a more pronounced flavor.
 

Mismost

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I would think the oils in the nuts would help with the mouth feel of the mead...make it a little fuller feeling.

We now have a bee hive out behind the garden...a friend put one of his out there. So, there is a mead in my future....I hope! They love the zinnas in the garden for sure..
 

Jericurl

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I'm working on a green chile extract and a jujube extract right now. I just checked both. Good, but needs a bit more flavor, so I strained them, added new ingredients, then topped off with more vodka.
They both ought to be packed with flavor when I'm done.

I'm thinking you could just do the same with your chestnuts.

I've heard the oils could be a problem, but if you roast at a low temperature on top of paper bag type material, a lot of the oils will leach out and be absorbed into the paper.
 

BernardSmith

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Apparently chestnuts are low in oils and I am hoping that the vodka will allow me to either freeze the oils or trap them in a paper filter
 

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