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Strawberry melomel that got out of hand!

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Registered Member
Jul 30, 2007
I have a problem with my strawberry melomel.
I aimed for something with a very light strawberry taste, light honey, oaked and just sweetened a bit (to FG 1.010 or something like that).

This is what happend: :angryfire:
I made a 10 Liters batch with the following ingrediences:
* 3 kg Accacia honey (very light in flavour) (so OG was about 1.100)
* 500 grams fresh chopped strawberries
* 1 pack of mead-yeast (for dry mead) from Wyest.

1)I racked to secondary too early (when SG was 1.025).
2) The fermenation stopped totally and never re-started again
3) I bought some kind of "re-starter" or unknown brand in my not-so-very-serious-party/homebrew store.
4) I pitched this and the fermenatation re-started very quickly
5) FG was down to 1.000 and I tasted: No strawberry flavour at all, and a somewhat gasoline-kind of of-flavour tast as well. Not nice at all. I did some research of the re-started yeast I bought and it turnes out that this was some kind of turbo-yeast.

So perhaps not surprising that I have the off-flavour, but I would not think that only the fermentation from 1-025 to 1.000 could make such a big difference with a crappy yeast.

Now the question: What to do with this mead to save it somehow? Will it get better with age, should I sweeten it up to mask the taste, add more strawberries. Does anyone have any suggestion have to save this batch to something drinkable (or even tasty)? I realise it will not be a prize winner this one... :BangHead:



Got Mead Partner
Dec 26, 2004
The OC
It would be good to know what the re-start yeast was but generally they are yeasts with a high alcohol tolerance and are very fast fermenters that produce lots of heat during the fermentation. The fusel flavor you're getting could be a combination of things that generally end up being yeast stress, high temperature, lack of nutrient and such. Turbo yeasts are made to get a fermentation done for distilling so the base product isn't really intended as the end product, but rather to be distilled once the fermentation is completed.

I'd say to let it sit for a while and let the fermentation cease completely, then take a gravity reading and taste the stuff. Generally some of that rocket fuel taste will age out and mellow. You can always backsweeten a bit down the road to your preference. I wouldn't add any more honey, or any other sugar source at this point since that turbo yeast will eat it up and the rocket fuel flavor will get worse. Give it some time, rack it after your lees have settled, then let it go and rack again after it clears. Then taste it and see where you are. Post up your results and maybe we can help.


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