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Thread: Cacao nibs in secondary

  1. #1
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    Cacao nibs in secondary

    Hi,
    I'm planning to use some cacao nibs into my stout. I've planned adding them in secondary.
    How do you guys use them? Do you simply toss them into the beer at fermentation temperature? Is there any infection risk doing it? What's your experience?
    I've heard people soaking the cacao nibs into rum to avoid any infection risk...

    As always, thank you for your help!

  2. #2
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    We've had good results with soaking ours in vodka. Just enough to moisten the nibs, soak overnight.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeyrb1 View Post
    We've had good results with soaking ours in vodka. Just enough to moisten the nibs, soak overnight.
    Not sure if that is "TTB" approved.

    We use Cholaca, amazing product! Used during transfer to brite.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by saltyturtlebeer View Post
    Not sure if that is "TTB" approved.

    We use Cholaca, amazing product! Used during transfer to brite.
    How much would you recommend using per bbl. for a noticeable but not overpowering chocolate flavor in say a 7% American porter?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by saltyturtlebeer View Post
    Not sure if that is "TTB" approved.

    We use Cholaca, amazing product! Used during transfer to brite.
    Thanks for the tip but I'm from Europe and Cholaca is not yet an option here.

    Anyone has tried to directly toss the cacao nibs into the beer? Feedbacks?
    Thanks!

  6. #6
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    Apr 2017
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paluppo View Post
    Thanks for the tip but I'm from Europe and Cholaca is not yet an option here.

    Anyone has tried to directly toss the cacao nibs into the beer? Feedbacks?
    Thanks!
    We do a blonde coffee stout and toss the cacao nibs in after fermentation and haven't had any issues with infection or off flavors.(hope I didn't jinx it)
    Cheers!
    Angry Fish Brewing Co
    Lake Murray SC
    We Drink All We Can and Sell the Rest

  7. #7
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    Oct 2013
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    Just use a muslin bag. The nibs can lock up and have a hard time coming out.

    I like to tie a string and suspend my additives half way in the tank. Generally right in front of the manway for easy removal later.

  8. #8
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    Feb 2016
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    We soak in local Guaro (virgin rum). Never had a problem. I fill a container just enough to cover the nibs, then add all to the tank after a couple days. I've never picked up hot flavors or anything out of the ordinary, despite adding guaro.

    Just our experience.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by UnFermentable View Post
    Just use a muslin bag. The nibs can lock up and have a hard time coming out.

    I like to tie a string and suspend my additives half way in the tank. Generally right in front of the manway for easy removal later.
    Are you putting the cacao nibs into the muslin bag without previously soaking them into spirt, right?

  10. #10
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    Oct 2013
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paluppo View Post
    Are you putting the cacao nibs into the muslin bag without previously soaking them into spirt, right?
    I have done both. Spirits do not sanitize as well as some would have you believe. In fact, molds can grow in liquor bottles. I believe you need to be above 70% (140 proof) to kill organisms effectively.

    With that said, spirits will help, even if not totally killing all organisms. I like bourbon with my Cacao personally, but some circumstances call for just cacao.

    Nibs are roasted during processing and are fairly dry (low moisture content). Both of these help reduce the chance of contamination when using raw nibs.

  11. #11
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    May 2017
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    Italy
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    I've recently soaked nibs with vodka, and added them in secondary. Foam is considerably decreased (alcohol extracs fats, decreasing surface tension) and now the beer is unwatchable after 2 mins in the glass.

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