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Melodymaker
09-28-2006, 05:48 PM
I'm trying to do it by the "book" this time. Have cleaned everything proper and am starting out with:

5gal freah apple cider
8bls of local clover honey
starting gravity at 1.120

mixed all and put in plastic bucket , will add yeast after 24 hours.
how my doing? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

Thanks, john

Oskaar
09-28-2006, 06:23 PM
Exact recipe please.

If this is your exact recipe, and you did not sulfite, boil or pasteurize your must and cover it, then you need to pitch your yeast right now.

Waiting for 24 hours will allow any native yeast, bacteria, molds or other varieties of nasties to take hold and start producing off-flavors, aromas and possible irreversible infection.

Let us know when you have pitched the yeast, and what kind of yeast you're going to use.

Also, your recipe looks like it is intended as almost six gallons (5 gal apple juice + .75 gal honey = 5.75 gal must) is that correct? If so then your gravity is going to start out significantly lower than what you are estimating. I'd say at the ratio you have stated in your inteded recipe you'll end up with a starting gravity of about 1.060-1.100 which gives you a PABV of around 11% or less. If you're using a yeast that goes at or above 11% ABV by volume, then you'll end up with a dry cyser, which is not a bad thing.

If you haven't made this, please stop and re-consider your approach.

Let us know what you decide,

Oskaar

Melodymaker
09-29-2006, 07:54 AM
what we did was add the honey to make the final amount come to 5 gal. So we have a gal + left over. we didn't put sulfer in it or boil. is it too late to boil now that the honey is in?
red star champagne yeast pasteur is what I have

or can a sulfite still be added at this point?

Oskaar
09-29-2006, 01:55 PM
It's been my experience that at this point the best way to deal with this is to add 1/3-1/4 teaspoon of powdered K metabisulphite to your must. Dissolve the K meta in about 100 ml of spring water and add it to your must. Mix it in well, and take a gravity reading. I'd go with 1/3 teaspoon which will give you around 30-40 ppm of sulphites in the must

Let stand for 24 hours and then pitch your yeast. The reason you let it stand for 24 hours is to allow the sulphite to do it's work, and then a significant portion of it will be dispersed to the point of where it will not kill off the yeast that you pitch.

If your gravity is lower than 1.130 you may wish to consider adding more honey to bring it up to at least 1.130 or higher beause the Pasteur Champagne will take your mead to dryness if it's below that number. If you're looking for a dry mead then that's not a problem, but if you're looking for a sweet mead then you'll need to bring the gravity up, or ferment to dryness, stabilize and backsweeten.

Hope that helps,

Oskaar

Melodymaker
09-29-2006, 03:56 PM
thanks Oscar, can you explain what "backsweeten" I've tried to look it up but couldn't find anything. Thanks! Appreciate you're help

Oskaar
09-29-2006, 04:56 PM
Ok MM,

Time to do a little research on your own. Use the search tool and do a search on backsweeten, backsweetening or how to backsweeten. This topic has been covered a number of times on the forums.

Cheers,

Oskaar

Pewter_of_Deodar
10-02-2006, 10:14 AM
You could heat the must up to 140F to 150F for 20 to 30 minutes and pasteurize it pretty well if you choose not to use chemicals. Pitch the yeast as soon as it gets back down to the allowable temperature for your yeast (usually around 100F).

As Oskaar mentioned, your selected yeast should ferment this one dry unless you do something to stop it before that happens.

Good luck,
Pewter