Mead Lover's Digest #1400 Fri 12 December 2008


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



Backsweetening (Luke Kostu)
A note of thanks (Scoville Steve)
Recovering from a mishap ()


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Subject: Backsweetening
From: Luke Kostu <>
Date: Sun, 30 Nov 2008 07:27:39 -0800 (PST)

When backsweeting i first look at the FG and figure where i want to
wind up. Using the "honey giveth 8 points per pound in 5 gallons" math,
i add accordingly. Most of the time if i'm at 1000, i'll use 8-16 oz
of honey after the potassium sorbate to take the edge off the dryness.
Just used 6 oz. of dark amber maple syrup to backsweeten a super-tart
blackberry melomel with great results and have used cider reductions to
sweeten cysers in the past. -Luke

Subject: Re: back sweetened mead
Date: Wed, 19 Nov 2008 13:55:26 +0000

Ken Taborek writes:

> How are you back sweetening? I use honey,
> some reserved from the original honey if I'm making a varietal mead. I
> just warm it a bit in the microwave to make it pour easily and stir it
> in. This will be after bulk aging and a few rackings, so the stirring
> doesn't disturb much if any lees.

Ken: Is there a formula you use to determine how much honey to use to
back sweeten? Or do you pour some in, taste, and repeat if needed?
I have not back sweetened before.

Greg Van

Subject: A note of thanks
From: Scoville Steve <>
Date: Fri, 5 Dec 2008 20:44:04 -0600

Just a note of thanks for you mead folk who take time to share
information and participate in the digest.

There are those of us who silently sit on the sidelines and watch the
dialog, to our benefit and education.

Happy Holidays to all!


"The Earl of Sorta"

Steve Scoville

Scoville & Associates, Inc.
740 Darden Place
Nashville, TN 37205


Subject: Recovering from a mishap
From: <>
Date: Sat, 6 Dec 2008 3:15:34 -0600

My most recent effort is next years holiday mead. Her is what has happened
so far.

5 gal cheap apple juice (I use this for nutrients instead of DAP on my melomels)
5lbs clover honey
5 lbs orange blossom honey

Heat to pasteurize. Pitch starter of Lalvin D47. (I pretty reliably get
about 114 points of gravity drop from this yeast.

Initial gravity is 1.141 and my yeast has a little trouble taking off so
I dilute to 1.130. After fermentation slows a little, I rack to a bucket
with 7 lbs of cranberries. I leave it on the cranberries for 6 days.

Which brings us to this AM.

I rack it off the berries and my gravity is 1.040.

I boil a root of ginger, 2 sticks of cinnamon, 2 nutmegs, 14 cloves. Remove
the spices. I add 5 lbs of orange blossom honey.

Then I get in a hurry and break a rule. I leave the room with honey on
a burner.

When I come back a few minutes later 1/2 the mixture is on the stove
and floor.

I added it to my carboy.

But that leaves me short on volume , honey and spices.

We often talk about adding honey to a fermenting mead. Do you just add
honey. Heat it first. Dilute it.

I have always diluted it and pasteurized it. But I get the feeling
that others don't all do the same thing. Since we are discussing back
sweetening. It seemed like a good time to ask.

And besides I needed to vent.

End of Mead Lover's Digest #1400