Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Spirits >
Jul 22, 2009 10:08 AM

Just about STRAINING & FILTERING homemade cordials

Hello, hello!

So, I'm new to the homemade liqueur/ infused spirits thing and I'm going to get the basic tools this weekend. More specifically I want to make some apricot brandy, limoncello, and coffee liqueur.

This filtering and straining process has me looking all over the place for some straight answers though.

Should I use a permanent coffee filter, disposable coffee filters, regular 'ol cheesecloth vs paper towels, nylon bags.... ah! Which is best, or give me a few. I want to make this good quality, but not over-the-top-fastidious quality.

Also, does filtering the finished, infused spirits through a Brita take the flavor away? Or just the Impurities?

I basically want this to turn out right, I don't want it to clump with age or freeze in the freezer.

I'm going to dilute the 150 Everclear with filtered water using some equation I found on another thread here, I'm going to use the fresh-in season fruits, and I'm going to sterilize the bottle and jars, etc

Thanks ahead of time!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Don't put the cordials through a Brita, activated charcoal will remove flavor. If you want to run the Everclear through the Brita before the infusion process, go ahead.

    I've filtered through cheesecloth and permanent coffee filters - both worked fine. Both the coffee liquor and limoncello will come out pretty clear from this. The apricot brandy might get a little bit cloudy due to fruit solids - if you want it perfectly clear you can fine it using isinglass. This should be available at most homebrew shops.

    I'd recommend pre-mixed isinglass if you decide to do this, just mix it into the cordial a few days before filtering and put it in the fridge. The isinglass will help bind to the solids and will make it easier to filter out. Might not be worth the trouble though.

    2 Replies
    1. re: joshekg

      I'll also add that you don't need to sterilize the bottle and jars. Wash, yes. Sterilize, no. The everclear will kill anything that could harm you.

      1. re: joshekg

        Everclear or and Neutral Spirit is basically flavorless, and filtering will do nothing. Also I have said this many times, but the plastic and resins in a Brita filter may not be high proof alcohol safe. The alcohol can leach unwanted flavors and possible harmful chemicals from the plastics and resins. there are only a few plastcis like HDPE that are chemically resistant to high proof alcohol. I have tried to contact brita baout this on several occasions, but never heard back from them on the composition of the cartridges.