Subject: Mead Lover's Digest #1218, 28 September 2005

Mead Lover's Digest #1218 Wed 28 September 2005


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



Cranberry honey ("Elaine Cunningham")
Sulfite (Leo Vitt)
Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1217, 24 September 2005 (
Jack Mead ("david.lane ")
volume loss during racking ("Eric Chumley")
Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1217, 24 September 2005 ("Dennis Key")


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Subject: Cranberry honey
From: "Elaine Cunningham" <>
Date: Sat, 24 Sep 2005 13:22:13 -0400

This comes from the honey locator website, in the description for
cranberry honey:

"These low evergreen shrubs are an important cultivated crop in the
Northeast. They also grow wild in some areas. Individual bogs do not
bloom more than two weeks. Little or no honey is obtained when bees are
placed for pollination, a requirement if cranberries are to be produced
commercially. "

No wonder a beekeeper on the Cape hastened to inform me that, although
they put the bees near the bogs during cranberry bloom, the bees also
visit other flowers then in bloom.

Subject: Sulfite
From: Leo Vitt <>
Date: Mon, 26 Sep 2005 16:49:17 -0700 (PDT)

I'm not trying to change anyone's mind about using sulfite in wine or

But I do use it. It's my sanitizer for wine or mead making. I have
made some without using it. I think oxidation occurred more often
without it. But there are a few other steps I follow to prevent
oxidation too. I run CO2 into a carboy before racking mead into it
ouce I had a CO2 system. I watch the racking tube to get rid the
bubble if one forms at the top of the racking cane.

Leo Vitt
Sidney, NE

Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1217, 24 September 2005
Date: Mon, 26 Sep 2005 23:16:10 EDT

> Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1216, 21 September 2005
> From: Jeannette <_JeanneNoSpam@comcast.net_>
> Date: Wed, 21 Sep 2005 15:19:46 -0700


> On Wednesday 21 September 2005 02:24 pm, _mead-request@talisman.com_ wrote:


> > Subject: Question
> > From: "jamesbrown" <_jamesbrown@iowatelecom.net_>
> > Date: Sun, 18 Sep 2005 22:12:21 -0600

> >

> > When I racked my last batch from secondary, I found it was too dry for my
> > taste and wanted to add some more honey to it.
> > I was told to put the honey in the carboy and rack onto it, the swirling of
> > the racking would dissolve the honey …..
> > According to my gravity readings, about 3 pounds dissolved, leaving the
> > other six at the bottom of the carboy.
> > My question is how to get the rest of the honey to dissolve


> Try racking, leaving an inch in the fermenter, then add a quart of boiling
> water. Stir to dissolve, and return the must.


> Jeannette

Please be VERY CAREFUL adding boiling water to a glass carboy!!
It is very easy to thermally stress it if it is not heated uniformly.
If you are lucky, it just goes ping and cracks (what happened to me
with hot tap water in a carboy that had been in the basement).
More likely is a scalding, sticky mess of large glass shards on floor.
If you are not so lucky, the result may involve not a little bleeding,
stitches, a trip to the emergency room, and scarring (what happened to
one not inexperienced homebrewer of my acquaintance).

If I felt compelled to heat a glass carboy with honey in the bottom
I would try to make sure I did it uniformly, gradually, and in a safe
location where I would not get hurt and could clean up a mess easily.
Maybe a water bath in my bath tub where I could gradually raise the
temperature and would have any mess safely contained if the carboy broke.
But, I would happily exert considerable effort to avoid this experiment too.

Barry Cunningham

Subject: Jack Mead
From: "david.lane " <>
Date: Mon, 26 Sep 2005 21:23:58 -0600

I've assembled what I hope will be a
straight sweet mead with a big a big oakey-vanilla
flavor and I wonder if anyone here has done
something similar.

At the same time I pitched I also assembled 4 oz
of French oak chips, enough Jack Daniels to cover
it, and six vanilla beans (two weeks later). This
whiskey sachet is mulling in an airtight widemouth
jar and will be added at the second or third racking
in four or five months.


Subject: volume loss during racking
From: "Eric Chumley" <>
Date: Tue, 27 Sep 2005 02:37:42 -0500

I have a question about one of the most basic steps in mead making. When I
rack from one 5 gallon carboy to another, what do I do about the shortage in
the new carboy. Fill up to the top with water? Honey? Air? As complete an
answer as possible would be very helpful, as I am very new. Thanks. Rick.

Subject: Re: Mead Lover's Digest #1217, 24 September 2005
From: "Dennis Key" <>
Date: Tue, 27 Sep 2005 10:55:53 -0600

Re: cranberry melomel. I made a decent batch one using Knudsen's Just
Cranberry. The juice was extremely tart and was meant as an ingredient in a
sweetened drink. I used champaign yeast and pushed it to its limit (about
20%), then sweetened it a bit more with more honey. It was semisweet and
quite tasty. I did have to use calcium carbonate to bring the pH up to
around 4 but it fermented very well.
Dennis Key

End of Mead Lover's Digest #1218