Subject: Mead Lover's Digest #1082, 13 March 2004

Mead Lover's Digest #1082 Sat 13 March 2004


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



Re: peptic enzyme (Dave Sherohman)
Most unusual meads ("James P")
elderberry cordial with honey ("Todd Hardie")
Competition Entries Wanted (Betty Fisher)
Anybody ever made Mauby Mead? (
Pectic enzyme – Apple Cider Meads ("john doerter")
newbie sour mead (Mike)


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Subject: Re: peptic enzyme
From: Dave Sherohman <>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 2004 12:53:55 -0600

On Tue, Mar 09, 2004 at 11:20:45AM -0700, wrote:
> 21 lbs of honey and 2 gallons of apple cider in a 5 gallon batch? Are you
> sure your recipe is right? In my not highly experienced, but somewhat
> mead-wise mind, this is going to result in a starting specific gravity that
> is WAY too high for the yeasties to work with. You might be able to do it
> by feeding much of the honey later after the sg goes down, but even then …

Not true. My first cyser (currently drinkable, albeit only on par with
mediocre commercial mead, but then it's not quite 6 months old)
started off as 20 lbs honey, 3 gallons organic apple juice, and no
water, for about a 4.5 gallon batch (SG 1.154). I put in a single vial
of White Labs champagne yeast and it took off like I had never seen
before. I think it may be stuck now (it's cleared quite nicely, but
still tastes slightly 'alive' and always seems to have just a little
extra bit of CO2 to vent when I poke at it), but, if so, it didn't
stick until after three weeks of vigorous fermentation.

I'm hardly a brewchemist, but I suspect that this is due to the
presence of simpler sugars in the juice which gave the yeast
something to sink their teeth into before having to deal with the
honey. (Then again, I started a straight mead last month at SG 1.152
with that same yeast and it took off pretty well, too, although not
nearly so well as the cyser. Maybe that's just a good high-gravity

> I also don't understand the reason for the brown sugar.

Either flavor or additional simple sugars, I would guess.

Subject: Most unusual meads
From: "James P" <>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 2004 09:54:10 +1000


Thanks to Dick for his ongoing running of the MLD.

Your efforts ARE appreciated.

I was wondering what are some of the more unusual but
successful meads that people have made?

Are you willing to provide a recipe also?


Subject: elderberry cordial with honey
From: "Todd Hardie" <>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 2004 20:47:25 -0500

Does anyone have a receipt for a elderberry cordial with honey?

Thank you.

Todd D. Hardie

Honey Gardens Apiaries
Hinesburg, Vermont


Subject: Competition Entries Wanted
From: (Betty Fisher)
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 2004 15:02:31 -0500

My fellow mead brewers:

Enter the British Beer & Mead Competition hosted by SODZ homebrewing club
in Columbus, Ohio! ?Deadline for registering entries is March 20, 2004
(competition date is March 27).

NOW is a good time to register your beers and meads for the SODZ British
Beer & Mead Competition. ?To enter your beers, point your browser
to ?Click on the 2004 British Beer Competition link and
then the REGISTRATION link. ?The username is sodz, and the password is
sodz. ?Complete the entry blank and then arrange to send your entries to:

Thirsty Dog Brewing Company C/O Eric Asebrook / SODZ Competition Entry 45
W. Alex-Bell Road Centerville, Ohio ?45459

While the deadline for entries is March 20, it would be helpful to have an
idea who is entering which beers so that we can organize the flights. ?Don't
procrastinate–enter now!

Good Luck! ~Betty Fisher

Subject: Anybody ever made Mauby Mead?
Date: Thu, 11 Mar 2004 19:01:51 EST

Has any one ever even heard of it? FYI, mauby grows in the Caribbean area.
The bark is harvested and dried, and is used to make a refreshing drink that
is not unlike iced tea…….think of root beer (the real kind), sarsaparilla,
sassafras, gentian root(Moxie) and you'll have an idea where I'm going with
this. There is a commercially -made mauby syrup (if one happens to be in a
Caribbean supermarket, in Trinidad or Grenada, perhaps!) but I wouldn't expect
to find it in the Springfield, Mass area

I've got a few ounces of mauby bark and think that it would make an unusual
metheglyn. Any hints?
Galen Davis, Southwick, Mass

Subject: Pectic enzyme - Apple Cider Meads
From: "john doerter" <>
Date: Fri, 12 Mar 2004 11:08:07 -0600

> Subject: peptic enzyme
> From: Mark Ottenberg <>
> Date: Fri, 05 Mar 2004 10:43:47 -0700


> At 09:59 AM 3/5/2004 -0700, you wrote:

> >Subject: (no subject)
> >From:
> >Date: Wed, 3 Mar 2004 09:18:01 EST


> >

> >Hi All,
> > I resently bottled my first mead, a raspberry melomel. I think when it
> >is finished it will taste great but I just found out I can't have any berries
> >(docs orders) so I want to make a mead I can drink. I found a recipe on the
> >internet that sounds good. My problem is this, the recipe calls for 1/4 tsp.
> >peptic enzyme. I need to know: why do I need it, is there a substitute
> >ingredient, what is it and where can I buy it cheaply? If this helps here
> >is the
> >recipe: 2 gallons apple cider, 21 pounds honey, 1 pkge lager yeast,
> >1 c brown sugar, 2.5 gal water, and the peptic enzyme. Any help with the
> >recipe will be appreciated also. I'm still very new to this.
> >Thank-you!!
> >Venus


> 21 lbs of honey and 2 gallons of apple cider in a 5 gallon batch? Are you

A few notes,
2 gallons Apple juice
+ 2.5 gallons water
+ 21 pounds of hone

6.25 gallons of must … not 5 gallons

this means that honey is 3.5 #/gallon
While this is slightly higher than average, it is
not extreme even when the contribution of the
Apple juice is considered

> sure your recipe is right? In my not highly experienced, but somewhat
> mead-wise mind, this is going to result in a starting specific gravity that
> is WAY too high for the yeasties to work with. You might be able to do it

Before the contribution of the Apple juice this must
will have a S.G. in the range of 1.116 – 1.136
depending on the honey used. Both the Brown sugar
and the Apple juice will raise the O.G. But probably
not too much… I'd guess O.G, in the 1.3 – 1.5 range
on this must. The question is the Alchohol tollerance
of the Lager yeast.

Assuming the Lager yeast can eat until 15% ABV the
resulting brew would have F.G. in the 1.02 – 1.04 range
which should maintain a nice Apple charachter. Although
this is partly diminished by the dilution with water.

>From personal experience O.G. 1.17 must will ferment
using lalvin k1-v1116 yeast. I pitched 1 packet dry
and it did the rest (i was in a hurry).

> by feeding much of the honey later after the sg goes down, but even then …


> I also don't understand the reason for the brown sugar.

Brown sugar is a frequent flavor component in ciders.


> Peace,
> — Mark


> Subject: Apple Cider and/or Apple Juice Meads
> From: "Kalliope" <>
> Date: Fri, 5 Mar 2004 11:31:35 -0600


> I just made 2 batches of an 'Apple Pie Mead' that I got off the internet.
> The recipe called for 1 gallon of honey, 2 gallons of Apple Cider, which
> I substitued with 2 gallons of Pure Organic Apple Juice, apple pie spices,
> (cinnamon, nutmeg, etc.) and I added 1 in batch, 2-Premier Cuvee yeast
> and acid blend & nutrients & in 1 batch, 2-champagne yeast (to get rid
> of it). The Premier Cuvee batch started in 2 hours, and within 7 started
> foaming all over place!

I'd like to hear what your spice contribution was a
little more accurately. But that is strictly for recipe refrence.

> Questions:


> 1. Did I put too much yeast in it?

Not the problem, though 1 package would have been
plenty if it was good.

> 2. Is it the apple juice that caused the foaming from hell?

Not entirely, apple juice is a decent source of nutrients,
when you added more nutrients you probably created an
environment far richer in nutrients than you intended.
Also @ 4#/gallon must is thicker and supports more foam
than lighter musts.

> 3. Is it the Premier Cuvee? Do I only need to add 1 pkg to any future
> batches?

1 packet of yeast is sufficient for batches up to 10
gallons, If your concerned about starting yeast
population per volume make a starter.

> 4. When I use apple juice, should I let it ferment in a primary bucket
> until the foam settles down?

This is wise with almost all meads, Certainly I have experienced
Krausen heads on all my cysers and melomels to varrying extents.

> Thank you for any replies.


> Skold,
> Karen



> Subject: Pectic enzyme
> From: Randy Goldberg MD <>
> Date: Fri, 5 Mar 2004 18:39:55 -0500


> By the by, the drink you're making, with both apple cider and honey, is
> sometimes called "cyser", and often takes a long time to age.

This has never been my Experience. All my cysers have been
very tasty at every stage. (not to say that aging will not improve)
I will admit that this one is a much higher gravity cyser than I
typically make though.

Thirsty Viking from and Rec.crafts.meadmaking

Subject: newbie sour mead
From: Mike <>
Date: Fri, 12 Mar 2004 20:43:21 -0500


New to the list…
I appreciate the wealth of information you folks are sharing.

I tried making this first batch of mead before I'd read enough. It is
tasting quite sour. Should I scrap it & start over?

The recipe was:

1 gallon water
3 lbs store-bought orange blossom honey
1 T yeast from an "Oz-Tops" wine kit
1 T Loose black tea
1 T Dried orange peel

Heated all ingredients (except yeast) to almost boiling & removed the
loose tea & orange peel, then let cool, pitched yeast, & poured into

Did not take an O.G. reading, again, tried to do this before I'd read

Started on January 17
Racked on March 2 tasted yesterday & it is VERY sour. Too much orange

Before the flames start, I now know about using Fresh honey as opposed
to store-bought stuff, the importance of a hydrometer reading, & I now
use a good yeast as well (my next batch will be using Lalvin 21-b or
Cote de Blanc, and nutrient, etc.).

I'm just wondering if time will mellow out this puckering concoction, or
should I chalk it up to a lesson learned?


End of Mead Lover's Digest #1082