The Ultimate Blackberry Brandy Recipe

The Ultimate Blackberry Brandy Recipe

Our DIY blackberry brandy recipe is the perfect after dinner drink, gift or choice for a summertime sip!

 

Nothing says summer like the taste of biting into a fresh blackberry. Keep that summertime feeling going all year round by making your own blackberry brandy.

 

Infusing spirits is a great way to marry your great flavor with your favorite spirits. By infusing spirits with ingredients like fresh fruit you can add beautiful flavor and deep gorgeous color to your favorite adult beverages. Infusing spirits is not a new practice, but it is certainly one that is piquing in popularity.

 

The Perfect Party Cocktail

 blackberry brandy

 

Infusing spirits also lends itself well to many rustic themed events. Many modern weddings, reunions and summer garden parties like to incorporate a homespun theme. This lends itself easily to homemade cocktails and infused spirits well presented in a traditional mason jar.

 

Of course this type of presentation is not only for parties. Infused spirits are a great DIY gift. They can easily be packaged along with a few glasses and some baked goods to make the type of do-it-yourself gift that friends and family will want to receive again and again.

 

Do you want to DIY?

 

When it comes to blueberry brandy there are two options to make this infusion. You can simply add brandy, berries and sugar to a jar and let it sit in your fridge for a month. This is a simple way to achieve this infusion that will result in a delicious product you will be happy to enjoy, share and gift. Of course, you can also take a truly DIY approach.

 

Many people know that in essence brandy is a distilled wine that is then aged or infused or otherwise changed after distillation. However, they may not realize just how easy it is to make brandy yourself.

 

The Right Equipment for the Job

 

For this recipe, we are going to use the Appalachian Complete Stove Top Still which has a 10 liter capacity. This is the perfect still for a recipe like this because it is easy to use and allows you to use your kitchen sink as a water source. The Appalachian Complete Stove Top Still is a great choice for beginners because it has the ability to use an electric stove, gas range, or even an induction burner as your heat source. This is a great bonus that makes the process of distilling easier and cheaper.

 

If you are going to do a larger batch of brandy we would suggest looking into an anti foam agent to reduce the likelihood that your brandy could bubble up during distillation. We suggest this antifoam product from Ferm Fast. However, since such a small amount is needed even in a larger batch it is not strictly necessary if you are doing a smaller batch.

 

How to Distill Wine (and what to Expect)

 

 

Typically brandy is made by distilling wine more than once. This means that you will put in a large amount of wine for a much smaller amount of brandy, but the brandy will have a higher ABV (alcohol by volume). It is important to note that if you have tried to ferment wine in the past and it has not worked, it is not possible to turn that wine into brandy. However, it is certainly possible to use cheap wine to make brandy, especially since we will be flavoring it afterwards.

 

Whether you use white or red wine (or a combination of both) you will still end up with a clear liquid. This is because you are simply distilling the ethanol (and methanol) out of the liquid and leaving the rest in the still. These liquids will always come out clear.

 

How to Determine Cuts and Fractions in Moonshine

 

Finally, it is important to note that fruit based distillations will produce more methanol than usual. If it is your first time distilling, be sure to familiarize yourself with our steps on how to fractionate your yield into foreshots, heads, hearts and tails. This is important as drinking methanol is not recommended and will cause a wicked hangover.

 

 

There are three different ways to determine whether your output is foreshots, heads, hearts or tails. You can examine the temperature of your still, the appearance of the output or the ABV.

 

Distillation will produce a few different elements, however, moonshine is only the hearts or ethanol. So keeping a steady temperature and monitoring temperature closely is essential in fractionating. By referring to the chart below you will be able to more or less pinpoint what the output could be.





Output

Temperature

Fraction

Keep or Toss?

Acetone

134°F or 56.5°C

Foreshots

TOSS

Methanol

147°F or 64°C

Heads

TOSS

Ethyl Acetate

171°F or 77.1°C

Heads

Keep for a second distillation or toss

Ethanol

172°F or 78°C

HEARTS

KEEP

2-Propanol

207°F or 82°C

Tails

Keep for a second distillation or toss

1-Propanol

207°F or 97°C

Tails

Keep for a second distillation or toss

Water

212°F or 100°C

Tails

Keep for a second distillation or toss

Butanol

241°F 116°C

Tails

Keep for a second distillation or toss

Amyl alcohol

280°F or 137.8°F

Tails

Keep for a second distillation or toss

Furfural

322°F or 161°C

Tails

Keep for a second distillation or toss

 

As mentioned earlier, brandy is often distilled twice to get a higher concentration of alcohol. This means that you will still toss out the foreshots and methanol, but keep everything else for a second distillation. At the second distillation, you will only keep the hearts.

Not Ready to Distill? You can Still Make this Recipe!

Are you still with us? This process seems complicated but really is not. The more you distill, the more comfortable you will become fractionating. It will get easier and easier. Plus you will have the satisfaction of turning cheap wine into delicious brandy. 

The other consideration is that it does take a lot of wine to make brandy. In fact, the distillation process will knock down your input so that it roughly takes 9 gallons of wine to make one gallon of brandy.

For this recipe, it will take three cups of brandy to make this infusion. If you want to diffuse it from wine, you will need to diffuse about 9 litre bottles. Of course, you can always cut down the recipe and make a smaller amount, or buy a cheap bottle of brandy. The important thing is that you have options and know how to make it yourself.

Always Remember to Sip with Caution!

 

Most cocktails made with moonshine are extremely potent. As brandy is made from distilling wine, the ABV will go up with each distillation. The amount of output will go down with each run, but the strength of your brandy will go up. As this brandy will be infused with fruit and sugar, it may not taste as strong as it actually is. With any cocktail, always sip with caution and serve and consume responsibly.

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