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Braggot and Fermentables

Esys

NewBee
Registered Member
Aug 16, 2013
47
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0
New Jersey
sites.google.com
I'll shortly be attempting my first braggot once my bottles arrive and the carboy is available.
A simple question: 50% (or more) of the fermentables in the braggot have to be honey.. Is this a pound-for-pound percentage, or do I have to convert to something or another according to the ferment-ability of said honey and the malt/grains?

As an aside, the honey type isn't chosen yet, but I was going with a pale DME, steeping Belgian Special B. No hops, and Nottingham Ale yeast.
 

Medsen Fey

Fuselier since 2007
Premium Patron
A simple question: 50% (or more) of the fermentables in the braggot have to be honey.. Is this a pound-for-pound percentage, or do I have to convert to something or another according to the ferment-ability of said honey and the malt/grains?
Who says 50% of the fermentables is the cutoff for a braggot? Personally once it gets above about 30%, the honey character becomes dominant enough that I'll call it a braggot especially if you age it a bit. It happens to be also around that point that it pays to start treating it like a mead (nutrients and stuff) By the way, I look at it in terms of gravity points and the relative contributions.




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fatbloke

good egg/snappy dresser.....
GotMead Patron
Probably not a standardised thing Medsen, but I was reading something somewhere, that was on about this (might have been something about your TTB and labelling nomenclature)....

I seem to recall it was to do with when its braggot and when its honey beer, and that 50% + honey or the other way round was the better decider as its more easily explained that trying to have a list of technique, for the drinking non-maker.......

Dunno if its even possible as regards TTB as I understand the have some very strange rules when it comes to labels and recipes (and yes I know the EU can be equally weird)......
 

kuri

NewBee
Registered Member
May 5, 2013
364
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0
Japan
By the way, I look at it in terms of gravity points and the relative contributions.
Put more concretely, if you were aiming for a starting gravity of 1.070 with 50% coming from honey, you would want enough honey to bring the gravity of the whole from 1.000 (water) to 1.035, and then you'd want enough DME to raise it by .035 gravity points again, up to 1.070. This isn't going to be exactly 50% honey since the addition of the DME will raise the volume a bit, making the honey's contribution somewhat less than 50%, but you get the general idea.
 

Esys

NewBee
Registered Member
Aug 16, 2013
47
1
0
New Jersey
sites.google.com
So.. I decided to throw the math in the air and be done with it..

Spiced Pumpkin Braggot

3# Amber DME
10# South Jersey Pine Barrens Honey (Throw your hands up, Pineys! :p)
5# Pumpkin filling..stuff... That was baked at 350 for 60 minutes
8 oz. Caramel malt 40L
2 oz. Chocolate malt
1 tsp McCormick's Pumpkin Pie Spice
British Ale Dry yeast


Didn't take SG readings.. Didn't care.

Fermented for 7 days, now racked into carboy and settling yeast in fridge.. Nice pumpkin smell.. Bit of a banana ester from too high of fermentation temperature (took recommended temp. on yeast package for ambient air temp, not fermentation temp.. whoops! Into cool garage for last half of primary ferment).

Now that yeast is settling, beer is a nice dark color from the chocolate malt, like a porter.. Which is what I was going/hoping for.
 

Midnight Sun

NewBee
Registered Member
Jul 13, 2010
436
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Anchorage, Alaska
Sounds really tasty. Planning on priming or drinking it still?

Just curious, but any reason you went with amber DME rather than light DME as suggested in your original post?
 
Last edited:

Esys

NewBee
Registered Member
Aug 16, 2013
47
1
0
New Jersey
sites.google.com
I'll be bottle conditioning it.. 3/4 cup of corn sugar for 5 gallons.

As for the Amber DME.. it was stated that it would add a rounder, more mellow flavor. Quite honestly, it was pretty much a case of just closing my eyes and choosing between the two. I have no experience anyway, so I'm flying by the seat of my pants.
 

Esys

NewBee
Registered Member
Aug 16, 2013
47
1
0
New Jersey
sites.google.com
Yeast has settled all out, and I'm just waiting to order bottles. Been taking samples to taste; the malt and honey are evident. No real perception of a banana flavor, which I was a little worried about having. At current temp, the pumpkin and spice aren't real evident, but once the braggot warms up in a cup to cellar temp, the tastes start to come through.

This is going to be a nice treat to wash down my aunt's dry thanksgiving turkey. :p
 

Esys

NewBee
Registered Member
Aug 16, 2013
47
1
0
New Jersey
sites.google.com
So I drew off a pint from the carboy to have with dinner, to get a better impression of the braggot...

I would have gotten another pint if I could have navigated the garage safely after the former. What's the ABV% of "Holy hell, I need to go lay down"?
 
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Noe Palacios

Aristaeus' Apprentice
GotMead Patron
Who says 50% of the fermentables is the cutoff for a braggot? Personally once it gets above about 30%, the honey character becomes dominant enough that I'll call it a braggot especially if you age it a bit. It happens to be also around that point that it pays to start treating it like a mead (nutrients and stuff) By the way, I look at it in terms of gravity points and the relative contributions.




Sent from my THINGAMAJIG with WHATCHAMACALLIT
Hi Medsen!


I remember when I brew beer that as soon as you have it as better, so aging was contraindicated. How aging goes on Bragott? Is there a relation between bragott's honey proportion with its aging needs? Can I expect that as lees honey less aging need? According to your experience, how long takes bragott to be on its best shape?.

Saludes,
 

Medsen Fey

Fuselier since 2007
Premium Patron
My experience with braggot is not huge. I rarely have a block of time that will allow for the necessary set-up and clean up. With that said, honey character with braggots works like honey character for other meads - 12-18 months of aging allows it to really develop. I've not had problems aging beer-strength, force carbonated braggots. They turn out fine. However the hop character diminishes with time so you may want to use more for batches you age.
 
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Noe Palacios

Aristaeus' Apprentice
GotMead Patron
My experience with braggot is not huge. I rarely have a block of time that will allow for the necessary set-up and clean up. With that said, honey character with braggots works like honey character for other meads - 12-18 months of aging allows it to really develop. I've not had problems aging beer-strength, force carbonated braggots. They turn out fine. However the hop character diminishes with time so you may want to use more for batches you age.
Medsen: Understood. About hops, reading your explanation, came to me the idea that I should hop in the same way I oak my mead, 4 months before bottling. In that way hop will be fresh enough.

Well, I think it's time for my first bragott.

Saludes,
 

Medsen Fey

Fuselier since 2007
Premium Patron
What you are describing is called "dry hopping" and will add hop aroma and some flavors. The bitterness requires the hops be boiled for the isomerized alpha acids to be created. So to age a braggot, you may want to also increase the hops in the boil.

Also, beer strength braggots are one thing I don't bulk age. The potential susceptibility to spoilage organisms is higher, and the oxidation risk is greater. I treat them like beer and get them cleared and bottled ASAP and let them age in the bottle under a crown cap.
 

Noe Palacios

Aristaeus' Apprentice
GotMead Patron
What you are describing is called "dry hopping" and will add hop aroma and some flavors. The bitterness requires the hops be boiled for the isomerized alpha acids to be created. So to age a braggot, you may want to also increase the hops in the boil.

Also, beer strength braggots are one thing I don't bulk age. The potential susceptibility to spoilage organisms is higher, and the oxidation risk is greater. I treat them like beer and get them cleared and bottled ASAP and let them age in the bottle under a crown cap.
Thank you Medsen !!!

Great advices.

Ok then the plan should be this, boil hops and add them to bragott a week, or two, before bottling, just like a beer.

Saludes,
 

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