In order to improve organoleptic properties, it is preferred to use wine or wild (on the surface of berries) yeast, because distillers, baker’s dry or compressed yeast almost completely offset the delicate berry flavor. The only flaw that wild and wine yeast have is that fermentation lasts 3-5 times longer. Therefore if you want to keep pleasant Blackberry flavor, use wine yeast, or a natural yeast that is on blackberries (do not wash them, as it will wash off natural yeast).
- Blackberries – 6 lbs/3 kilos
- Sugar – 1-2.2 lbs/0.5-1 kilo (optional)
- Water – 3 liters (and additional 4 liters per each pound/kilo of sugar)
- Yeast – 0.7 oz/20 gr dry yeast or 3.5 oz/100 gr pressed (undesirable)
Blackberry Brew Recipe:
- Crush the unwashed (only if you use wild yeast) berries by hands or in any other way until smooth.
- Put the mash in a fermentation vessel. Add water, sugar, and yeast (optional) and mix it. It is desirable to leave about 25-30% of free space in the vessel for foam and carbon dioxide.
- Install a water seal or a medical glove with a hole in one of the fingers on a bottleneck. Leave the mash in a dark place with a stable temperature of 65-82°F/18-27°C.
Using a glove instead of an Air lock
The fermentation might last 4-45 days depending on the chosen yeast, sugar content, and temperature (4-10 days for distillers or baker’s yeast, 15-45 days for wild or wine yeast). The fully fermented wash is bitter and unsweet. The water seal stops bubbling within a few days and there will be a sediment layer at the bottom.
Making Blackberry Moonshine
- Filter the fermented wash through a few layers of gauze and pour it into a distillatory vessel of a moonshine still. Squeeze the contents of gauze, you won’t need dry husks.
- Perform the first distillation of the mash without fractionation. Finish drawing off the distillate with ABV dropping below 30%.
- Measure the ABV of the obtained blackberry moonshine and determine the amount of pure alcohol (the volume multiplied by the ABV and divided by 100).
- Dilute the distillate with water up to 18-20% and perform fractional distillation. Draw off the first 10-12% of the pure alcohol separately. This harmful fraction is called “heads.” Due to a high concentration of hazardous admixtures, it’s not fit for drinking.
- Draw off “the body” (main product) until the ABV drops below 45%. Finish the distillation or gather “tails” separately.
- Dilute the blackberry moonshine with water until the desired ABV (40-45%). Then bottle it for storing, hermetically sealing the bottles with lids. You should let the distillate mature for 2-3 days in a dark cold place before tasting.