Mead Lover's Digest #0513 Wed 27 November 1996


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



Plums in my Secondary ("Mark Tomusiak")
Re: "Dreamsicle" mead (
Buckwheat Metheglin (
Temp., & Floating Berries (DENNIS WALTMAN)
almond honey (


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Subject: Plums in my Secondary
From: "Mark Tomusiak" <>
Date: 22 Nov 1996 08:49:21 -0800

Subject: Time: 4:34 PM
OFFICE MEMO Plums in my Secondary Date: 11/19/96

I have a question regarding a fruit mead. A friend of mine
recently pointed out some wonderful wild plum bushes out
in the foothills, and with mead in mind I picked a few
pounds. Since I wanted to retain as much of the plum flavor
as possible, I decided to add the plums (after chopping, pit
removal and freeze-thawing) to the mead at the end of
fermentation rather than to pasteurize them and throw them
in the primary. I thus made a basic wildflower honey mead
(OG 1.120), let if ferment out to about 1.015, and
then racked half of the mead on top of the plums. I expected
to get some renewed fermentation activity but none has
appeared (apart from some bubbles slowly trickling up from
the plum sludge), probably because the yeast (K1V) has
reached its alcohol limit. My questions is, how long should
I let the mead secondary with the plums? It is already
clear, so I don't need to wait on that – will the
plum flavors mix with the mead the longer it sits? Any
input would be greatly appreciated

  • Mark Tomusiak, Boulder, Colorado.

Subject: Re: "Dreamsicle" mead
Date: Fri, 22 Nov 1996 15:06:40 -0600 (CST)

Howdy MDLovers,

Could you use a Wit beer yeast (AKA Wyeast #3944 etc.) to get the same
orange/vanilla flavors?

Jeff Smith | '71 HD Sprint 350SX, Temp '77 GS 400 X | Barnes, WI
I am so pleased that the mead is brewed!-Jane Austen

Subject: Buckwheat Metheglin
Date: Sat, 23 Nov 1996 19:31:49 -0500 (EST)

Well I've been lurking for long enough! It's time I contributed to this
community. . .

My latest batch of mead is a buckwheat metheglin — I was looking to make
something rich and primeval, if you know what I mean. The results weren't quite
as dark and powerful as I expected, but as of bottling (Nov. 20) it was a very
nice mead. It should be outstanding after a few months of bottle aging.


0.5 kg clear honey
1.0 kg buckwheat honey
1T jasmine tea
2 cinnamon sticks, crushed
5-7 slices of fresh ginger root
3t acid blend
1t yeast nutrient
1 pkg Prise de Mousse yeast

I pasteurised the first five ingredients in 4L of water for about 40min, then
poured the lot into a 2-gal bucket which I covered with a tied-down plastic
sheet. After the must cooled I adjusted for acidity and added the nutrient and
yeast. About a week later the primary fermentation had subsided significantly,
so I strained the must into a 1-gal carboy, topped up with sugar syrup and fitte
an airlock. This took about 6 more weeks to ferment out to completion.

The only problem I had with this batch was a persistent layer of haze near the
top of my otherwise crystal-clear mead. I racked twice onto Campden tablets, the
second time filtering with a funnel and coffee filter (!), which seemed to final
get rid of the problem.

The result is an amber mead with nicely blended ginger and cinnamon tones. The
distinctive taste of the buckwheat honey is very much attenuated, and contribute
to rather than dominates the flavour (much to the relief of my buckwheat-honey-
disliking wife). The mead is nicely dry (OG ~1.090, FG ~0.995) and would probabl
have been nice as a sparking wine — maybe next time!


Steve McCullough
Teaching Assistant, Department of English
Carleton University — Ottawa, Canada

"I feel wonderful. I feel utterly and dangerously
wonderful in this wilderness land." -Josef Skvorecky

Subject: Temp., & Floating Berries
Date: Mon, 25 Nov 1996 10:45:04 -0500

I've just started my first meads (yes plural) this last weekend,
though I have been brewing beer for a couple of years. I decided to
try meads after getting to steward at a local brew contest for the
meads (and thus to taste all the entries and listen to the judges
comments). I have two questions at this time. Thanks to all in

1. Most of what I have read on fermentation temps for meads has them
fermenting at 72 F and higher. The basement room I have the
fermenters in is sitting at 65 F, and with the cold weather coming
[down to 25 F, brrrrrr] it might drop a couple degrees lower. Is this
a problem for the meads, long or short term? The first is a 3 gallon
batch of cranberry mead [3 lbs cranberries, 10.5 lbs of clover honey,
Champaign yeast], the second is a 3 gallon tranditional [8.75 lbs of
sourwood & wildflower honey, and a white wine yeast that begins with
an M, but I don't dare try to spell here]. Both were pumping bubbles
through their airlocks within 24 hours of adding the yeast, but I
don't know about how the cooler temps will affect them (time or more
important, flavors). Short I try and warm up the area?

2. In the cranberry mead, I put the fruit in the primary without
straining the pulp out. There is a layer of partial berries floating
on the mead. Should I make sure to rack the mead out from under
shortly, or is it OK to leave the fruit in long-term?

Thanks again. Private emails are ok.

Dennis Waltman
Sutherland, Asbill & Brennan
Atlanta, GA

Subject: almond honey
Date: Tue, 26 Nov 1996 00:04:13 -0500

Someone asked about almond honey. Unfortunately, for all practical purposes
there is no such thing available. I live in an area where a lot of almonds
are grown. The growers pay bee keepers to put hives in the orchards. There is
no honey harvested from the hives because the nectar content of almond
blossoms is so low that very little honey can be made. The bee keepers must
feed the hives sugar water so that they will not starve and will stay in the
orchards to complete the pollenation. Any almond honey produced is consumed
by the bees. Similar story with most nut trees.

micah – brewer at large

End of Mead Lover's Digest #513