Subject: Mead Lover's Digest #1173, 3 April 2005
From: mead-request@talisman.com


Mead Lover's Digest #1173 Sun 3 April 2005

 

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

 

Contents:

Black Raspeberry puree ("SHAWN WICHMAN")
Re: Neverending fermentation? (Jeremy Janzen)
Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1172, 1 April 2005 ("david.lane ")
Re: fish (Avraham haRofeh)
Re: oak (Erroll Ozgencil)
Re: Bottling, yeast starters, Star Thistle honey (Avraham haRofeh)
Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1172, 1 April 2005 (David Collins-Rivera)
Firewater Capsicumel (norma cross)
Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1172, 1 April 2005 (OudBruin@aol.com)
Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1172, 1 April 2005 (KitkatnEdrat@aol.com)
over oaking (Zertwiz@aol.com)
used oak barleas (Zertwiz@aol.com)
Re: oak ("Dan McFeeley")

 

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Subject: Black Raspeberry puree
From: "SHAWN WICHMAN" <WICHWAYS@MSN.COM>
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 10:13:33 -0700

I recently made a batch of mead which I racked onto 5 lbs of black raspberry
puree. The manufacturer stated that the puree was 13 brix. I took a reading
before racking onto the berries. I expected the gravity to get higher after
racking onto the berries, but it was less. As I was counting on more
gravity from the berries for my recipe, I ended up adding more honey to
increase the gravity. Any ideas as to why the gravity reading reduced with
the addition of the berries?

S Wichman


Subject: Re: Neverending fermentation?
From: Jeremy Janzen <jeremy.jj@sasktel.net>
Date: Fri, 01 Apr 2005 13:24:53 -0600

>What's was the starting gravity? What's the gravity now? If the ABV is
>approaching 18%, then the yeast's essentially done, regardless of what
>you're seeing. When did you last rack? Is there a significant amount of
>trub in the carboy? If so, rack again and see if you continue to observe
>CO2 production. Personally, I consider one bubble every 120 seconds to be
>more or less finished fermentation.

Starting gravity is unreliable because I added 4 additional pounds of honey
after 1 week. The current SG is below 1.000, .997 I think. Trub=sediment?
If so, yes it appears there is significant sediment. Unfortunately I
don't have an extra carboy to rack to, so I can't try that advice.

>Hard to say — how large a batch is this, (i.e., amount of water for the
>ten pounds of honey), and what was the starting gravity? What's the
>finishing gravity?

Its a regular 23 liter batch. So I added however much water was required
to equal 23 total liters. See above for SG info.

>I suspect you used one of Lalvin's Killer Yeasts either EC-1118 or
>K1V-1116. Can you put the carboy in a freezer for a few days? If
>not and you still have 40°F and below nights, keep it outside in the
>evening. I have had 1 crushed Campden tablet per gallon work for me.

Yes, I think it was one of those variants. But I don't want to kill the
yeast by freezing or using Campden because I want to bottle carbonate it.

Thanks everyone for the advice! I'm still not sure what to do, but I'm
very tempted to bottle because this is taking an extremely long time.


Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1172, 1 April 2005
From: "david.lane " <david.lane@utahisp.com>
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 12:38:13 -0700

>> I assembled a pomegranate mead this evening:

>>

>> 24 lbs Miller's clover honey
>> 5/4 gallons pomegranate juice (unsweetened)
>> 2 packages Lalvin EC-1118 yeast
>> enough water for 5 gallons

>

>For two gallons of honey in a 5 gallon must, I get an hydrometer
>reading of 1.160. Then there's the fermentable sugar in 1.25
>gallons of pomegranate juice has to put you off the usual 1,17
>scale and better than 1.200. May I suggest you add yeast nutrient
>and yeast energizer. Lalvin Killer Yeasts (EC-1118 and K1V-1116)
>have been known to make 20% ABV and I wish you luck with it.

Thank you. I think your advice may be good. I did not use
any yeast nutrient and although I've pitched twice using two
packets each time I haven't gotten a single bubble in four days.

I had assumed that the juice would have enough nutrient. When I
woke this morning on the fifth day I added 5 tsp of some
crystalized chemical labeled "Yeast Nutrient". If it starts in
the next two days I'll leave it alone, otherwise I'll throw
it out.


Subject: Re: fish
From: Avraham haRofeh <avrahamharofeh@herald.sca.org>
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 17:26:12 -0500

> Can I grow a fish in my mead aquarium — do they like honey? They
> will
> convert some oxygen to CO2, but the bubbler should provide enough
> for fish
> and yeast alike. What about fish waste products, maybe helpful
> nitrogen…
> any advice helpful, which species, etc.?

I would expect the alcohol to be toxic before too long.

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

Reb Avraham haRofeh (mka Randy Goldberg MD)
Quarterly azure and argent, four mascles counterchanged
RandomTag: Famous last words: "Ohh, shiiiiii…."


Subject: Re: oak
From: Erroll Ozgencil <errollo@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 14:32:23 -0800

>I found out I can get year old french oak 50-gallon
>wine barrels for $20. The only bee keeper I know said

tel,

New oak barrels are hundreds of dollars, so $20 for a 50-gallon
french oak barrel would set off my too-good-to-be-true alarm. It
reminds me of an old joke:

How do you tell if a used barrel is infected? Easy, they're the ones
that are for sale.

Caveat emptor,

Erroll


Subject: Re: Bottling, yeast starters, Star Thistle honey
From: Avraham haRofeh <avrahamharofeh@herald.sca.org>
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 17:37:42 -0500

> I have a mixed berry
> melomel that I will be bottling in May and I plan on using 22 oz
> beer bottles and caps. I will purge the bottles with co2 and before
> and after they are filled. Is this over kill or a common practice?

I think it may be overkill. Certainly, I've never done this and my meads
have never suffered for it.

> Does a corked wine bottle offer more long term storage protection
> or is a bottle cap ok?

Caps are fine, and in fact may be easier in terms of application and
storage. You can probably also apply a new cap much more easily than you
could a new cork (sticking the used cork back in a bottle does not protect
it at all).

> In the brewing world some people do not
> recommend making a starter when using dry yeast. I usually pitch
> two packets that have been re-hydrated when using dry yeast for
> beer or for mead.

I never use a starter – and I've never had a stuck fermentation.

> I will be making a traditional mead using about
> 12lbs of honey and yeast nutrient for 5 gallons and I plan on using
> Lalvin D-47. Do I need to make a starter or will just two packets

> do?

D-47 and 1 gallon of honey in a 5 gallon batch will probably go almost all
the way to dry.

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

Reb Avraham haRofeh (mka Randy Goldberg MD)
Quarterly azure and argent, four mascles counterchanged
RandomTag: Sexual intercourse vests no property rights.


Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1172, 1 April 2005
From: David Collins-Rivera <lostnbronx@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 16:34:05 -0700


> Subject: Bottling, yeast starters, Star Thistle honey

> I have a mixed berry melomel that I will be
> bottling in May and I plan on using 22 oz beer bottles and caps. I will
> purge the bottles with co2 and before and after they are filled. Is this
> over kill or a common practice? Does a corked wine bottle offer more long
> term storage protection or is a bottle cap ok? In the brewing world some
> people do not recommend making a starter when using dry yeast. I usually
> pitch two packets that have been re-hydrated when using dry yeast for
> beer or for mead. I will be making a traditional mead using about 12lbs of
> honey and yeast nutrient for 5 gallons and I plan on using Lalvin D-47. Do
> I need to make a starter or will just two packets do?

Chris,
I have not heard of purging bottles of mead with CO2 before. Is this
a brewer's practice? Many people use sulphites to ensure that the
mead is not infected with wild yeasts and other microbiota, and
potasium sorbate to inhibit the yeast from restarting the fermentation
process in the bottle. This stabilizes it for long-term storage. I
don't sulphite or use sorbate, though, so I usually keep the bottles
in the fridge. I also ferment to dryness, which also lessens the
chances of the yeast waking up and creating bottle bombs.

I have used starters with Lalvin D-47 before, and the fermentation
took off very fast and strong. It worked itself out well, and I was
quite satisfied with the results.

 

  • -David

 


Subject: Firewater Capsicumel
From: norma cross <cross@cybermesa.com>
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 12:19:10 -0700

That little bit of typing caught my eye from this last
posting.

Hey Charles, would you mind posting your recipe for
your spicy mead? I've been experimenting with several
recipes, so far all of them have been quite popular. I
have one I call Loki's Kiss that gets good reviews
when I bring it out. I'll happily trade recipes with
anybody who is interested in mead that bites back!


Hi,

I'm not Charles, but I also make a HOT mead that people keep coming back for.
I just make a traditional mead with champagne yeast and after
transferring into carboys i drop in 4-5 dried chipotle chiles and leave
them until it is time to bottle. Sometimes I add chocolate extract to
make a "mol=E8" mead but it is so subtle I'm not sure it is worth it.
Norma


Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1172, 1 April 2005
From: OudBruin@aol.com
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 21:51:12 EST

ref: strawberry melomel
it's also a good idea to pasterize the fruit unless you like lactobacilis or
other strange nasties in your mead-
dose rate for fruit mead should be at least 150 to 200 gms fruit for every
litre of product
regards
Bruce Hammell


Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1172, 1 April 2005
From: KitkatnEdrat@aol.com
Date: Fri, 1 Apr 2005 22:27:10 EST

Hi all!

I am new to the forum and making mead. About 3 months ago I made my first
batch. I made a medium sweet mead. Im wondering what is the best way to make
it clear. Also, I am wondering if it is to late to add oak chips – I have
racked a total of 3 times. I here people talking about adjusting the acidity
and am wondering the best way to do this?

For another project I'm planning on making a strawberry-kiwi melomel and
wonder how much fruit/honey I should add to formulate a 5 lb recipe?

Thanks,

Ed


Subject: over oaking
From: Zertwiz@aol.com
Date: Sat, 2 Apr 2005 14:25:35 EST

the best way to fix over oaked wine is to blend it with a simaler wine that
has not ben oaked. its best to conduct some triles on a small scale to see how
much oak flavor you want to get the prapaportions right. the oak will not
age out especaly if it smells like a wood shop


Subject: used oak barleas
From: Zertwiz@aol.com
Date: Sat, 2 Apr 2005 14:27:44 EST

oak barles that are used are fine as long as they have ben properly
maintained if it smells vinergy in side its not worth the risk even if
you cleen it
properly at thi point there might be bacteria still iding in the wood pores


Subject: Re: oak
From: "Dan McFeeley" <mcfeeley@keynet.net>
Date: Sun, 3 Apr 2005 05:18:14 -0500


On Tue, 29 Mar 2005, in MLD 1172, tel wrote:

>I found out I can get year old french oak 50-gallon
>wine barrels for $20. The only bee keeper I know said
>he would charge me $100 for five gallon buckets of
>honey. Who thinks a fifty gallon batch in a lightly
>used oak barrel is a good idea?

It sounds like a great idea, but you might want to check
out the barrels first. What kind of wine was fermented
in them, and how long were they kept in the barrels?
A brand new barrel could overpower a mead with oak
flavor — used barrels are better, but it's helpful to find
out how well used they were.

The kind of honey you're planning to use is also important.
A light honey will be overpowered by oakiness much more
easily than a darker honey.

Either way, go for it! You can always blend with an
unoaked mead if you feel the fifty gallon batch needs
adjustment.

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

Dan McFeeley


End of Mead Lover's Digest #1173