Mead Lover's Digest #1479 Sun 4 July 2010

Mead Discussion Forum


cyser blackening (Dick Dunn)
Re: The Evolution of a Mead…or the Evolution of Taste? (Spam-a-holic)
Maple Mead (Timothy Gouge)

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Digest Janitor: Dick Dunn

Subject: cyser blackening
From: Dick Dunn <>
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 2010 08:56:40 -0600

On Tue, Jun 29, 2010 at 08:44:06AM -0600, Wyatt Kilgallin wrote:
> > I have made up a batch of Cyser and had racked it a couple of times and
> > everything seemed fine. We went on vacation and came back to find that
> > the Cyser had turned essentially black. Any ideas as to what might have
> > happened?
That sort of darkening in a cider–and same applies to cyser–indicates
contamination by metal. Black means iron, which includes any non-
stainless steel. (If it might actually be dark green, that would indicate
copper/brass.) So check your process to figure out where you could have
had contact between the cyser and bare iron or steel.

The blackening occurs when you get enough contact with air. The actual
contamination may have happened long before that.

Dick Dunn Hygiene, Colorado USA

Subject: Re: The Evolution of a Mead...or the Evolution of Taste?
From: Spam-a-holic <>
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 2010 12:14:48 -0400

On Jun 29, 2010, at 10:44 AM, wrote:

> > Subject: The Evolution of a Mead…or the Evolution of Taste?
> > From: Craig Bryant <>
> > Date: Fri, 25 Jun 2010 23:12:50 -0400
> >
> > I'm sipping a traditional clover mead at the moment…nothing special at
> > all, 3 pounds clover honey to the gallon of mead, Red Star Premier Cuvee
> > yeast. The batch was started November 15, 2008. But I can't quite figure
> > this thing out.
> >
> > I opened the first bottle two months ago, in April, and it was nothing
> > like love at first sight. My notes say "a hard one to love"…"overly
> > grassy, vegetal, even a kind of muddy quality." I finished the bottle,
> > but never cared for it. In fact, I was prepared to write off all-
> > clover meads altogether.
Well, I can't provide any input on your tastes changing, or not, but
I know for a fact that mead changes, sometimes drastically. If you
haven't killed it before bottling, there's nothing much to be
surprised about there, either. Even if you have killed it, there may
be various complex chemical reactions that proceed without further
biological input.

I had a batch that was good at about a year, terrible for 3 years,
and then it got good again and is still good 15 years on (though not
much is left now). The changes were a bit drastically noticeable to
be anything like a change in taste. Bitterness and a complete lack of
honey aroma – and then the bitterness went away and the aroma came
back. If I'd had a chemistry grad student and a gas chomatagraph,
someone could probably have gotten a PHD off this stuff, but lacking
those, it just falls under the general heading of long aging is
generally good for meads (except for the folks who would have happily
drunk the whole batch at 1 year, or thrown it out when it turned
terrible.) This may not apply if your sanitation is not good, but if
it is, time is almost always a good thing.

Lawrence H. Smith, Buxton School Librarian and Computarian
Cats, Coffee, Chocolate…Vices to live by.

Subject: Maple Mead
From: Timothy Gouge <>
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 2010 13:20:06 -0700 (PDT)

I am looking for information about making maple syrup mead. I am wondering
if the ratio of syrup to water would be similar to that of honey. Any help
would be appreciated.

Tim Gouge

End of Mead Lover's Digest #1479