Okay. Cloudy homebrew.

Wine and mead first: it’s not as though I have some sort of principled stand against a beautiful clear wine or mead, no. Clear wine shows off the color of the brew fabulously, which is kind of the point. It’s just that I don’t think it’s worth half the time and trouble it takes, and that the road to clear wine paves over some other very pleasant options.

The pectin that causes haze/cloudiness in fruit wines is the same pectin that gives jams and jelly their gel, and gives the wine it’s in more body and a smoother mouthfeel. Sure, you can add pectin enzyme to your fruit to eliminate the pectin and add glycerine later when your wine seems thin–or you can leave the pectin right where it is. The feel of a wine that still contains its original pectin is something you can pretty much only get in a homebrew, and I dig that.

I also brew things because I like to drink things I’ve brewed. Clarifying can take a long time. You can rack a wine off its sediment three times and still see clouds. Mead in particular is a slowpoke, and can take months and months and months and still not clear until you give up and use some Sparkolloid or whatever. All of these mean more time, more fuss, and more chances for something to go wrong–the brewing ape does not like these things. The ape is very strongly anti-fuss. The ape certainly does not go looking for these things when there is a delicious bottle of cloudy homebrew sitting in front of her. Waiting for flavor is worth it; waiting for other things, not so much.

Now for beer: I like cloudy beer. I like its taste and its texture. That’s pretty much that. Irish moss, cold crashing, et cetera, they’re good to know about but I’ll probably never use them.

Now that you know my thoughts on cloudy homebrew, you can figure out if you agree or not. If you don’t, you’ll want to make sure to add pectin enzyme/pectinase to most wine recipes and read up on clarification techniques for the other brew types.

Cloudy brews, a treatise on their excellence

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