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My First time

African Bronze Honey - 50% off for GotMead members

MeadTime

NewBee
Registered Member
Sep 26, 2005
2
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0
I just want to make sure I have this down, and will not end up with race fuel. I have brewed beer many times, but this is my first mead, and needless to say i am excited

Ingredients:
10lbs honey
1 pkg Red Star Premier Cuvee Dry Yeast
2 teaspoons Fermax Yeast Nutrient

Procedure is simply, clean everything, prep yeast, warm honey, warm water, Stretch my back out and then shake up my carboy, place the air lock on; salivate and wait. Then bottle and age, I was hoping for it to be ready by christmas.

Questions:

Will 3 1/2 months be long enough for a drinkable dry Mead?

Are there any errors in my procedure or missing ingredients?

I wanted the Mead to be initially sweet with a dry finish, hopefully all goes well :D
 

Oskaar

Got Mead Partner
Administrator
Dec 26, 2004
7,874
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The OC
Welcome to the board Meadtime!

Your recipe as it stands will come out very dry and will need to age for a while before it will be really smooth and enjoyable.

Is this a five gallon recipe? Also, are you looking for dry, semi-dry or sweet? Based on your answers you'll need to increase the amount of honey you use.

Cheers,

Oskaar
 

David Baldwin

NewBee
Registered Member
Jun 29, 2004
860
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Grand Rapids, MI
Welcome to the forum!

Your batch size is critical to knowing how to advise you on how sweet/dry to expect this.

Joe Mattioli has reported success with early drinkable meads by stopping the ferment at about 10% ABV leaving a bit of residual sweetness.

(Joe feel free to crucify me if I've misrepresented you. :D)

David
 

lostnbronx

Senior Member
Lifetime GotMead Patron
Dec 8, 2004
1,020
1
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David,

You'll have to stand in line if Joe wants to crucify people -- I've been pointing at him for weeks now regarding my Two-Week Pyment experiments! Guess I should put on some sunblock if I'm gonna be hanging around!

-David
 

briankettering

NewBee
Registered Member
Jun 2, 2005
174
0
0
Premier Cuvee does a wonderful job fermenting honey. If you start off with 10 pounds of honey in a 5 gallon batch, your mead will be dry through-and-through, from initial sip to that last lingering aftertaste. Dry meads tend to take about a year to become drinkable, sometimes longer.

Your timeline seems to indicate that you would like the mead ready for an upcoming event. Try making a mead which is closer to a beer than a wine.

Start off with 8 pounds of honey in a 5 gallon batch. This will give you an original gravity of about 1.050. Any wine yeast will ferment the mead dry, giving you an alcohol level of about 5.5% abv. Consider using an American or English ale yeast it leave a hint of residual sweetness.

If you decide to go this route, try using the darkness honey you can find.

Brian K
 

JoeM

NewBee
Registered Member
Jan 9, 2004
665
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39
I find that most meads that turn out to be truely awesome at 12-18 months taste like they could be used to strip paint off a barn at 3 months. In other words you'd probably be cutting it pretty short with the timeline. Right now I'm actually starting to plan my meads christmas 2006!
 

byathread

NewBee
Registered Member
Mar 8, 2005
644
0
0
Boulder County, CO
MeadTime,

Sweetness tends to mask other undesirable flavors and for this reason dry meads tend to take a bit longer to be nice and drinkable. You might try Joe's Ancient Orange recipe for something that'll be ready on your timeline.

Cheers,
Kirk
 

Brewbear

NewBee
Registered Member
May 10, 2005
959
0
0
I'm with Kirk on this one. Just bear in mind that the Ancient orange will finish sweet, more like a desert wine. It will be drinkable in about 21/2 months and better at 31/2!!!

Ted
 

MeadTime

NewBee
Registered Member
Sep 26, 2005
2
0
0
Wow thanks for all the input, this forum is great!

Well my internet decided to die on me and I couldn't read any responses, so I just went ahead and did my own thing(i am too impatient). The only change I made was the addtion of 2 cups of Lingonberry Concentrate (which tastes a lot like Cranberry). I did that because I figured it would be mostly alcohol if I didn't, but it may still be.

I added the all the ingredients together, and my must,mash,wort was around 110 deg Fahrenheit, I poured in the hydrated and prepared yeast which was living at the time. And waited, 2 hours passed and I had no activity. I threw in another packet and it started to make the airlock bubble. I didn't understand, but I figured the temp had gone an' killed the little suckers.

After reading all your input I am going to let it sit in the carboy for a while, but I have just a few more questions.

Questions:

I have honey that has settled on the bottom of carboy should I shake/stir it up?*

How long should I keep it in the carboy if it is destine for bottles, and should I prime it with honey?

*BTW I took initial gravity reading when the honey was settled at the bottom, because I had forgotten and it came up as 1.011?! ???
 

WRATHWILDE

Lifetime Patron
Lifetime GotMead Patron
Mar 19, 2005
1,970
2
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Dubuque, Iowa
www.zazzle.com
If you are within the first 3 days... stir the heck out of it. If you are past 3 days stir gently... you generally don't want to expose your mead to Oxygen after passing the 3 day mark.

Wrathwilde
 
African Bronze Honey - 50% off for GotMead members