Mead Lover's Digest #0603 Wed 15 October 1997


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



Formation of international mead association ("Lear Eddy (AE) (AED-R)")
Methlegin (
pitching dry yeast on top of sweet yeast? (j&a)
Re: First Time Mead Disaster (Peter Miller)
mead and acid blend (reding)
re: almond mead…is it possible? plus dried fruit (Dick Dunn)
Re: almond mead…is it possible? (Joyce Miller)
Almond Mead (Kate Collins)


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Subject: Formation of international mead association
From: "Lear Eddy (AE) (AED-R)" <>
Date: Mon, 13 Oct 1997 12:44:00 +0200

At the last Apimondia Congress a number of mead producers throughout the
world thought it would be a good idea to form an international association.
The name of the new organization is Mead Masters International.
If you have any input, we'd be glad to hear from you.
It was also agreed that there would be symposium at the next Congress in
Vancouver in 1999. We would like feedback as to good speakers and
id be glad to hear from you.

Subject: Methlegin
Date: Mon, 13 Oct 1997 09:42:32 -0400 (EDT)

A year is a long time to wait, but all my meads sit a minimum of a year
anyway, so whatever. Anyway, my apple cinammon mead is done.

12# Clover Honey
1 Tsp Acid blend
1 Tsp Irish Moss
1 1/4 Tsp Yeast Nutrient
10 Apple Cinnammon tea bags (steeped 30 min)
Wyeast 3184
5 Tsp Sparkalloid (add a week before bottling)
1 Cup Corn Sugar

OG 1.082
FG below 0.990 (the limit of my hydrometer)

Pitched yeast at 78f

The only things I see doing differently are the use of more tea bags, and a
finer adjustment of acid. I only started testing for acidity this year, so
that's something I want to look at. But this definitely has an aroma that is
out of this world!


Subject: pitching dry yeast on top of sweet yeast?
From: j&a <>
Date: Mon, 13 Oct 1997 11:50:21 -0500

hey now,

thanks for everyones help on my blueberry/raspberry mead…!

this is a great list, just wish it came out more often.

it was mentioned that using 12pds of honey and wyeast sweet mead yeast may
not be a good comnination because it would take forever to ferment out. i've
heard of pitching a dry yeast after a sweet mead yeast is through
fermenting. any opinions on this? it's only been fermenting for two weeks
and i'm getting activity in the air lock about ever 8 seconds or so. i
racked the mead into a glass carboy this weekend. if i do add more yeast,
will i need to transfer to another carboy? the one i have it in is a five
gallon carboy…

thanks again!

Willow sky, whoa, I walk and wonder why.
They say love your brother, but you will catch it when you try.
Roll down the line, boy, drop you for a loss;
Ride you out on a cold rail road and nail you to a cross.

  • –Unbroken Chain by Robert Petersen


Subject: Re: First Time Mead Disaster
From: Peter Miller <>
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 97 08:47:11 +1000

>1) the raspberries have come apart letting the seeds out. how bad will the
>tanin acid from the seeds be?

I wouldn't worry about it. 2 lbs of raspberries in 12 gallons shouldn't
give you that much tannin. I routinely let fruits break apart in the must

  • – in fact I often encourage it by freezing first, which breaks all the

fruit cell walls on thawing. I've found that it gives better fruit
flavours. Just don't leave the fruit in too long (otherwise it may start
to decompose – not a happy thing) A week or so is about right.

>2) what detrimental effects will i have from pitching the yeast at 90F? it
>was in a healty, 20oz starter before pitching.

I'd say none at all if the yeast is now ferementing. At the most you will
have killed off some of your original starter, but hey, some of the
little guys obviously made it through and are doing their job.

>3) i'm going to siphon the mead off of the fruit in a week. how can i go
>about this when the spiggot is clogged? i guess through the top with a

Why siphon it? Just strain it through a clean nylon sieve. There's no
need to be finicky at this stage. The must will still be pea-soup cloudy
anyway. You only need to worry about siphoning after you've got a heavy
sediment and your mel is looking like it's clearing.

>4) does this mead have a chance of being any good?

Sure. If it's fermenting happily, smells good and is not growing any
mouldy bits on it, there's no reason to suspect that it won't turn out
fine. (Did you think to take a gravity reading when you got home? Too
late is better than not at all. At least it will give you a "minimum"
limit for reference…)

Good luck. Don't despair. Trust your nose.


Subject: mead and acid blend
From: reding <>
Date: Mon, 13 Oct 1997 20:15:05 -0700

I am rather new to mead making although I have 30 gal under my belt, more

like over my belt now but that's a different story!

My question involved whether I should use acid blend. In my last batch, I

made 20 gal of mead using local light wildflower honey. I 60 lbs of honey
that I got for $60. I boiled all of the honey in about 10 gal with 1 tsp
irish moss for 10 min, then cooled. I divided it into 4 5-gal glass
carboys and topped each carboy off with cool, de-gassed water. I decided
to experiment with different spices.

1. Add 4 bags of zinger tea.
2. Add 8 oz of rose hips
3. Add 1 tablespoon of McCormick's Pumpkin Pie spice
4. Leave as show mead

For all batches, I used the Premier Cuvee White wine yeast. It is very

clean. Fermentation finished in about 2 months. It has been in the
secondary for about 4 months now. The FG on all batches was about 1.015.

1. I would have to say that the only one that I am not pleased with is the
zinger mead. I really do not like the flavor. All are semi-dry with alot
of honey flavor.

2. The rose hips give a "port-like" quality. It is very nice but will need
some more time to mellow.

3. The pumpkin pie spices give a subtle flavor and arome that is quite
nice. I might add a little more spices as the spices are starting to
diminish eventhough the mead is young (it is still in the secondary).

4. The show mead is the best of all. This might because the mead is still
rather young and the show mead needs less time to age.

Question: It seems that most people but in some acid blend to help

balance the flavor. I have never done this. Should I? When is acid blend
(or using an equivalent such as lemon or orange juice, tartaric acid, etc)

Thanks for the input.

Keith Reding

St. Louis, MO

Subject: re: almond it possible?  plus dried fruit
From: (Dick Dunn)
Date: 14 Oct 97 10:09:02 MDT (Tue)

"Kurt Hoesly" <> wrote:
> I'd like to try to make an almond mead, but none of the brewing books at
> the local library have had recipes using any type of nuts (except for
> liqueurs)…

The big problem in dealing with nuts is the oil. Nuts can work as flavors
for liqueurs because the essence is extracted into an alcohol base and the
oil can be left behind…a process you're not likely to parallel with

At the risk of suggesting an approach that some will find too commercial or
insufficiently natural, consider using bottled nut extracts.

> Another question that came to mind recently was whether it work to of
> use dehydrated fruit rather than fresh or frozen. Granted, there would
> be no juice added from the dried fruit, but they do still have the
> majority of the flavor. Does anyone have any experience with this, or
> am I out to lunch with this idea?

I've done it with apricots. First point: Be sure the fruit is "unsul-
phured", because a lot of dried fruit is treated fairly heavily in order to
help it keep its color.

With the apricots, I found that the drying and the rehydration broke down
the fruit quite a bit. The first racking was a mess on a scale you can
only begin to imagine if you've done a handful of melomels…it was very
much like having several inches of pure pulp in the bottom of the carboy.
I suppose there are ways to combat or cope with this, but I decided it was
better just to follow the seasons and stay with fresh fruit.

Dick Dunn rcd, domain Boulder County, Colorado USA

…Never attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by stupidity.

Subject: Re: almond it possible?
From: Joyce Miller <>
Date: Tue, 14 Oct 1997 17:55:28 -0400 (EDT)

>I'd like to try to make an almond mead, but none of the brewing books at
>the local library have had recipes using any type of nuts (except for
>liqueurs). Other than the liqueurs, there was only a recipe for an
>almond orgeat – and it didn't sound terribly appealing. Anyway…what I
>was wondering is how to go about getting the almond flavor into the
>mead. Should I simmer the almonds and use that water in the brewing?
>Or would it work out better to chop the almonds and add them to the
>primary fermenter?

I've tried it, and my advice is… add almond flavoring to a plain mead.

The problem is that the alcohol extracts the oil *beautifully*. You'll end
up with a thick layer of almond oil on top. I know, I know, you're
thinking, just siphon from underneath. But the oil gets all over the inside
& outside of the racking cane as you push it through the oil. I ended up
having to buying a new one. The finished product didn't even have that much
identifiable almond flavor.

Use almond flavoring.

  • — Joyce

Subject: Almond Mead
From: Kate Collins <>
Date: Wed, 15 Oct 1997 12:00:08 +0200

Hi –

To the guy who wanted to make almond mead, I'm facing the same
problem. There are approximately 8 trillion chestnut trees in
the area, so I thought I could put them to good use. Personally
I think nuts would go best in a "kumiss" – a mead made with
milk that I don't have an exact recipe for – we discussed it
(again) a few months ago I believe. Maybe if you toasted the
almonds first, then chopped them coarsely? Or you could even
grind them and keep them in a cloth bag in the must? Should be

/Kate Collins

End of Mead Lover's Digest #603