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From: mead-request@talisman.com
Errors-To: mead-errors@talisman.com
Reply-To: mead@talisman.com
To: mead-list@talisman.com
Subject: Mead Lover's Digest #1006, 8 April 2003


Mead Lover's Digest #1006 Tue 8 April 2003

 

Forum for Discussion of Mead Making and Consuming
Dick Dunn, Digest Janitor

 

Contents:

Re: potentail alcohol (Mike Faul)

calculating alcahol content ("Randy Goldberg MD")
Calculating alcohol content ("Randy Goldberg MD")
Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1005, 3 April 2003 (Charles Sifers)
Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1005, 3 April 2003 (Charles Sifers)
mulberry or orange mead recipes? ("Leo Demski")
Re: calculating alcahol content ("Ken Taborek")
Re: bottling ("Ken Taborek")
first batch (Linda Short)
Roger Morse @ Meadmaking (Dan McFeeley)

 

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Subject: Re:  potentail alcohol
From: Mike Faul <carraig@earthlink.net>
Date: Thu, 03 Apr 2003 08:43:16 -0800

Most hydrometers have both the specific gravity reading and the
potential alcohol readings. All you do is subtract the final gravity
from the beginning gravity and you have the total drop. This can then be
used to calculate the total alcohol potential.

If your hydrometer has an alcohol potential use those numbers instead
and the result is the amount of alcohol you have +- evaporation etc.

The best way to test is to send a sample somewhere and have them test it
for you.

I'll offer to test samples for people using an ebulliometer if they want.

Mike
http://www.rabbitsfootmeadery.com


Subject: calculating alcahol content
From: Zertwiz@aol.com
Date: Sun, 30 Mar 2003 21:50:41 EST

hay i understand taking the spicfic gravity of the must befor fermentation
and then at the end is how you figre out the alcahol contend of the mead

how do you crunch the numbers

chris anderson



Subject: 
From: <vince@scubadiving.com>
Date: Thu, 3 Apr 2003 12:22:11 -0500 (EST)

Hi mead lovers,

My 2 cents on barstop corks: I use cork corks to bottle, but I always keep
a few barstop corks in my kitchen drawer (they come from port or other
commercial bottles). When I open a bottle that needs to go back in the
fridge (it happens sometimes), I replace my "cork cork" with the barstop
one because it's easier. Then I recycle the barstop cork for the next
bottle we don't finish (You can keep them for a while before they get
dirty). No hassle. I get the best of both worlds

Quick question for methegliners: when you buy essential oils, what you see
commercially available is violet LEAF, not flower. I assume the leaves have
an aroma and/or flavor, but I never smelled (or tasted) it. I wonder if it
it could be the same or close to the flowers. Did anyone ever use the
leaves instead of the flowers?

A week ago, I started a 17 gal batch (16 + 1 gal starter) with 3lb
honey/gal, 1tsp fermax nutrient/gal + acid blend – OG 1.105 – and Lalvin
D47 (4 packs in the starter for 2 days at 68-70F). I know it's nothing
compared to a meadery, but for me it's big and it got me excited. I am
happy to report that I didn't have any temperature problems (I was afraid I
would). I pitched at 74F, it went down to 68F within 48h and is now stable
at that temperature (in a 55-60 deg basement – didn't check lately,
probably closer to 60). Since the ideal temp for D47 is 60-70, it is
fermenting happily. I will eventually split it over different fruits in a
few months. I did this in food grade PTE. I'll let you know eventually if I
was right to trust plastic or if it tastes like petroleum derivatives…

Happy meading
Vince


Subject: calculating alcahol content
From: "Randy Goldberg MD" <goldbergr1@cox.net>
Date: Thu, 3 Apr 2003 17:23:33 -0500

> hay i understand taking the spicfic gravity of the must befor fermentation
> and then at the end is how you figre out the alcahol contend of the mead but
> how do you crunch the numbers

Once you calculate the difference between the starting and ending gravities,
consult the table at http://brewery.org/brewery/library/beeslees.html#App3
which will convert it to %ABV for you.

******************************

Randy Goldberg MD
Be a rapturist – the opposite of a terrorist – commit random acts of
senseless kindness


Subject: Calculating alcohol content
From: "Randy Goldberg MD" <goldbergr1@cox.net>
Date: Thu, 3 Apr 2003 17:37:52 -0500

> hay i understand taking the spicfic gravity of the must befor fermentation
> and then at the end is how you figre out the alcahol contend of the mead but
> how do you crunch the numbers

I just spent 5 minutes with the table I cited from The Bee's Lees and Excel.
The formula works out to %ABV = (SG-FG)*130.8

******************************

Randy Goldberg MD
Be a rapturist – the opposite of a terrorist – commit random acts of
senseless kindness


Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1005, 3 April 2003
From: Charles Sifers <chazzone@mindspring.com>
Date: Thu, 03 Apr 2003 19:56:24 -0600

on 4/3/03 10:19 AM, mead-request@talisman.com at mead-request@talisman.com
wrote:

>

> 
Subject: calculating alcahol content
> From: Zertwiz@aol.com
> Date: Sun, 30 Mar 2003 21:50:41 EST

>

> hay i understand taking the spicfic gravity of the must befor fermentation
> and then at the end is how you figre out the alcahol contend of the mead but
> how do you crunch the numbers

> chris anderson

O.G. – F.G. x 105 = alcohol content


Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1005, 3 April 2003
From: Charles Sifers <chazzone@mindspring.com>
Date: Thu, 03 Apr 2003 20:06:53 -0600

on 4/3/03 10:19 AM, mead-request@talisman.com at mead-request@talisman.com
wrote:

> 
Subject: bottling
> From: "David Jones" <dpjones@nlkj.com>
> Date: Tue, 01 Apr 2003 19:42:47 -0600

>

> This is my first batch. Please see if everything at least looks okay to
> bottle.

> 5 gallon batch. I started October 19, 2002 with 15 pounds of blackberry
> honey, 1 tsp gypsum, 4 tsp acid blend, 1/2 ounce of yeast extract, 1/4
> tsp irish moss, 1 tsp yeast energizer. The yeast was Wyeast 3184XL,
> sweet mead yeast.

> Starting S.G. was 1.130.

> I racked Dec. 12, Feb 15, and yesterday, March 30. S.G. is 1.060 and has
> been since the first of the year. The mead is clear. So the mead is 163
> days old.

> Can I bottle? Regular wine bottle and corks? Other comments?

> Thank you.

You still have a lot of sugar left to ferment. Your alcohol is at 7.35%, so
I doubt the yeast has reached tolerance. My experience with sweet-mead
yeast is that it's terribly slow, so be prepared to wait, unless you want to
pitch some champagne yeast in to finish it up, but then it will finish dry.

At any rate, if you bottle now, you'll likely end up with exploding meade,
and that's too terrible to imagine.

  • -zz

Subject: mulberry or orange mead recipes?
From: "Leo Demski" <leodemski@hotmail.com>
Date: Fri, 04 Apr 2003 07:43:25 +0000

Hi everybody! Thanks for all the great information that you've provided
over the past several years. After never quite getting "a round tuit", I'm
finally going to make a couple of batches of mead. Whoo-hoo!

That's procrastination for you. Sometimes its slow going. ūüôā

Anyhow, in the spirit of cutting costs and using some great local South
Florida fruit, I was thinking of making a mulberry mead and an orange mead.
I have three gallons of great unfiltered orange blossom honey to work with,
and a buddy has 3 mulberry trees and 12 orange trees.

Does anyone have any recipes or suggestions for mulberry and/or orange mead?

How much fruit should I use per gallon for optimal effect? Do I need to

lower the acidity of the must if I use lots of fresh orange juice?

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks and a belated happy anniversary to the digest!

  • -Leo Demski

 


Subject: Re: calculating alcahol content
From: "Ken Taborek" <Ken.Taborek@verizon.net>
Date: Sat, 5 Apr 2003 17:28:13 -0500


> 
From: Zertwiz@aol.com
> Date: Sun, 30 Mar 2003 21:50:41 EST

>

> hay i understand taking the spicfic gravity of the must befor
> fermentation
> and then at the end is how you figre out the alcahol contend of
> the mead but
> how do you crunch the numbers

> chris anderson

Chris,

Many hydrometers have several scales on them. If your hydrometer is graded
for potential alcohol, then the easiest way to calculate your %alcohol is to
subtract the potential alcohol reading from the finished mead from the
potential alcohol measurement from the fresh must.

If your hydrometer doesn't have this scale, then you can use the following
formula:

(From the RealBeer website at:
http://www.realbeer.com/library/beerbreak/archives/beerbreak0301.php)

"Alcohol percentage by weight equals 76.08 times Original Gravity minus
Final Gravity divided by 1.775 minus Original Gravity. It is easier to
scribble this down: ABW = 76.08(OG-FG)/(1.775-OG).

You should remember that ABW is used mostly in the United States, while the
rest of the beer world (as well as the wine and spirits world) measures
Alcohol by Volume (ABV). That conversion is easy: ABV = ABW (FG/.794)."

HTH!

Cheers,


Subject: Re: bottling
From: "Ken Taborek" <Ken.Taborek@verizon.net>
Date: Sat, 5 Apr 2003 17:28:14 -0500


> 
From: "David Jones" <dpjones@nlkj.com>
> Date: Tue, 01 Apr 2003 19:42:47 -0600

>

> This is my first batch. Please see if everything at least looks okay to
> bottle.

> 5 gallon batch. I started October 19, 2002 with 15 pounds of blackberry
> honey, 1 tsp gypsum, 4 tsp acid blend, 1/2 ounce of yeast extract, 1/4
> tsp irish moss, 1 tsp yeast energizer. The yeast was Wyeast 3184XL,
> sweet mead yeast.

> Starting S.G. was 1.130.

> I racked Dec. 12, Feb 15, and yesterday, March 30. S.G. is 1.060 and has
> been since the first of the year. The mead is clear. So the mead is 163
> days old.

> Can I bottle? Regular wine bottle and corks? Other comments?

> Thank you.

David,

A SG of 1.060 would be far, far too sweet for my tastes. You can bottle
this if it suites your tastes, but if I were you I'd taste it before making
the decision to bottle. If you do bottle it at this gravity, make sure you
stabilize it using potassium sorbate and sulfite. Or perhaps bottle in
champagne bottles. The remaining potential alcohol is so high I'm not sure
even a champagne bottle could contain the pressure if fermentation restated
once bottled.

If you find that it's too sweet for your tastes, you can attempt to restart
the fermentation by making a quart starter of a more attenuative yeast.
Champagne yeast might be a good choice for a mead with a gravity as high as
yours. Add 1/3 of the starter to the mead, and refill your quart starter
with the mead, and continue daily until the fermentation restarts. You
might also need to add nutrient and aerate.

Good luck!

Cheers,


Subject: first batch
From: Linda Short <lc_otter@yahoo.com>
Date: Mon, 7 Apr 2003 21:10:02 -0700 (PDT)

I've been on this mead list for quite a long
time, but despite that, I am just now starting my
first batch.

I used the juice from 16oz frozen blueberries
and 16oz frozen black berries, 3 lbs cotton honey
(bought from Alabrew in Birmingham, Alabama …
they also have interesting honeys such as Kudzu),
Lalvin D-47 yeast and yeast nutrient.

I used a no-boil method. However, I am worried I
might have screwed something up. The honey is
sitting on the bottom. The airlock is bubbling
quite vigorously, so i am not worried about that.
My question is, can the yeastie beasties get to
the honey on the bottom?

I know the must is thoroughly aereated because I
just drove 13 hours with it in my back seat. (and
GODS am I tired!)

 

  • -Linda-

 


Subject: Roger Morse @ Meadmaking
From: Dan McFeeley <mcfeeley@keynet.net>
Date: Tue, 8 Apr 2003 01:50:02 -0500


There was some discussion on rec.crafts.meadmaking on the late
Roger Morse's approach to meadmaking. I put out a post which
I thought MLD readers might be interested in. Here it is
below:


__________[snip!]——————————————


There's been a fair amount of conversation on this newsgroup
regarding the late Roger Morse and his contributions to meadmaking,
and I thought a critique from a broader perspective might be helpful.

Roger Morse had a life long interest in mead and meadmaking, going
back to his graduate days at the University of Cornell and likely
earlier. His Masters thesis was a project researching improved
methods of meadmaking intended for commercial production of mead,
completed in 1953. Later, he teamed up with Keith Steinkraus and
together they patented a method of making mead on a commercial
level. This was during the late 1960's and early 1970's. The
two had hoped to capitalize on a potential market niche for honey,
until world honey prices took a climb upwards, dashing their hopes.
Morse remained a promoter of meadmaking, offering help to meadmakers
in other countries on his many trips, and later wrote a book titled
_Making Mead_, published in 1980 by Wicwas press.

There's no doubt that the Cornell University method for making mead
was a significant breakthrough in commercial meadmaking. Morse and
Steinkraus could consistently produce completed meads in about 2 weeks
time. A 1973 article by Morse & Steinkraus did a survey of commercial
meads, and meads produced by the Cornell University method. At that
time, meads were mostly sweet, likely in order to cover off flavors,
however, the meads Morse & Steinkraus produced were light and dry,
with no reported off flavors.

A commercial mead, light and dry, produced in two weeks time was
certainly a boon to commercial meadmakers. There were other
approaches to meadmaking, however, that ran counter to the methods
proposed by Morse & Steinkraus. In the same year Morse completed
his Masters thesis on meadmaking, another famous meadmaker published
an article on meadmaking in Bee World. This was Brother Adam, also
writing in 1953, who felt that the use of additives to control the
fermentation harmed the delicate flavor nuances of a good mead.
Although he recommended boiling the honey must, he was cautious,
saying that the must should be briefly brought to the boil and
no more, thus achieving sanitation without excess harm to flavor
and aroma. Brother Adam was aware that his methods were opposed to
what many meadmakers were working with, but the quality of his meads
spoke for themselves. He would add just a touch of cream of tartar
(Brother Adam wasn't aware of this, but cream of tartar acts as a
buffering agent, helping to stabilize the pH of the honey must), and
age his heather honey meads for eight years in used sherry casks. The
result was heavenly ambrosia. Without the use of additives, he achieved
fermentation times of 4 to 6 weeks. This was a stark contrast to the
reputation in other circles of mead being difficult to ferment, with
fermentation times of 6 months, even a year. Both Brother Adam and
Roger Morse were making high quality meads, with completed fermentation
times that were considerably less than others, yet using widely differing
methods.

Roger Morse commented, in his book _Making Mead_ that he could argue
against Brother Adam's methods of making mead, but he could not argue
against the quality of his meads, which were excellent. The Cornell
University method of making mead was specifically aimed at making mead
on a commercial level, as developed by Roger Morse and Keith
Steinkraus in the late 1960's, worked very well and was an advancement
in meadmaking, yet answered to the demands of commercial production of
fermented beverages during the late 1960's and early 1970's. At that
time, there was a strong emphasis in U.S. winemaking on the use of
technology to control the fermentation. The result was wines that were
big and bold in flavor, but one dimensional in quality. The Old World
craftman's approach was lacking. Speed of fermentation does not
necessarily mean world class quality, although, in terms of commercial
production, this is highly desired.

Roger Morse and Brother Adam represent, roughly speaking, two
approaches to meadmaking. One is the use of technology to control
the fermentation; the other the craftman's approach. Which is better?
I'll leave that to the reader to decide.

<><><><><><><><><><>
<><><><><><><><>

Dan McFeeley



End of Mead Lover's Digest #1006

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