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Charles Serfoss
10-13-2006, 01:17 AM
In the Beginning...

18 Pounds Abigails Orange Blossom Honey (approx)
5 Gallons Water Works filtered water (Sunnyvale tap as source)
1 1/2 tsp. DAP
10 grams K1V-1116
12 grams GoFerm

1. Bring Yeast to Room Temperature
2. Sanitize everything w/ Iodophor
3. Warm Honey in sink full of warm water
4. Mix 12 pounds of honey w/ 1 1/2 gallons water
5. Add mix, remaining honey and another gallon water to fermenter (5 gallon carboy)
6. Realize just how much of a pain it is to pour 12 pounds of honey w/ 1 1/2 gallons of water into a 8" funnel without making a mess
7. Mix with lees stirer for 2 minutes
8. Get mildly annoyed that both batteries went out in 2 minutes
9. Start charging first battery
10. Heat up water for yeast hydration
11. Forget water until it hits 122 degrees
12. Get mildly annoyed again...
13. Add 1 1/2 tsp DAP to fermenter
14. Add water to bring to about 5 gallons
15. Mix manually with lees stirer
16. Add 12 grams GoFerm to 109 degree water and stir
17. Wait till temp drops to 106 and add 10 grams yeast
18. Wait 15 minutes
19. Stir in yeast and pitch into fermenter
20. Get battery and using lees stirer go to town mixing like heck for five minutes
21. Take SG - 1.132
22. Cleanup multitude of messes, attach blow-off tube into 1 gallon bottle, take picture and head for gotmead!

Tomorrow morning, post-lag phase, I'll add another tsp of DAP. Then at 1.09 SG, I'll add 5 grams Fermaid K.

Can I drink it yet? Please?

So... the first thing I bought was the honey and after reading for the last two weeks and getting everything else, I realized that with the K1V (18% tolerance), I expect to end up with something "around" 1.05 OG.

I like sweet! Is my best bet to quickly get another couple of pounds of honey to add into the batch, or wait until fermentation stops and add it then? (backsweeten?)

Thanks!

Oskaar
10-13-2006, 03:37 AM
Welcome to Gotmead.com!

Looks like a dry mead recipe to me. K1 has a PABV of about 18%, and that 18 lbs of honey will put you right at that mark. K1 is a great yeast, but don't count on it knocking itself out at exactly 18%, there's a bit of wiggle room there that you have to get used to based on your recipes and experience.

You might consider adding a couple more lbs of honey to the mix when you rack to sweeten it up a bit. You can also add it in to the ferment, but I would advise in a Traditional Mead to add at the first racking or you may end up with a batch of rocket fuel.

Looks like you have a good process and have thought out your mead very well.

I'd suggest that at the end of the lag phase a mixture of 70% FermaidK to 30% DAP (total of 5 grams) would be a better blend for this mead. Since you're going varietal and don't have a lot of nutrients there to begin, the FermaidK will give you a better and wider nutrient base to sustain your yeast through the fermentation. Mixed with the DAP as above for a quick energy boost FermaidK works pretty well at the end of the lag phase.

I don't think you'll need the additional dosage of nutrient at the 1/3 sugar break, K1 is not a really nutrient sensitive yeast, and you shouldn't really add the nutrient of your yeasties really don't need it.

Best of luck,

Oskaar

Charles Serfoss
10-13-2006, 10:57 AM
Done and done!

Blend added and with only a bit of gysering (start slow w/ that lees stirer!) I'm running about 2 bubbles per second. Thanks for the assist Oskaar, it's greatly appreciated!

-- Charles

Charles Serfoss
10-31-2006, 09:50 PM
Well... now I'm not so sure what I should do next. It's been a bit under three weeks (19 days) and the fermentation has dropped to about 1 bubble every 30 seconds (just in case, I'm counting a "bubble" as when the airlock releases air, not while it's building up). I did a SG test and it's about 1.06, which seems high as I was considering racking into the secondary.

As I understand it, 1.02 is about the highest I want for a sweet mead...

My guess is that I didn't have as much honey in the batch as I thought so the K1 went as far as it could (15-16% as I figure) and stopped. Oh, temp on the fermentation has been fairly constant at 73-77%

Should I:

1. Leave it for another month and see where it goes

2. Throw in a tsp of FermaidK (to give the yeast a boost)

3. Throw in some more honey (to give the remaining yeast something else to work on)

4. Throw in some more honey and more K1 (to get the fermentation started up again fresh)

5. Other...

Not panicking, just wanna get something drinkable! :)

Thanks!

-- Charles

lostnbronx
11-01-2006, 12:37 AM
Charles,

I'd follow Oskaar's advice about adding a few more pounds of honey to this at racking (which you can do at almost any time now). While the really active fermentation is over, your K1V will still continue to work in Secondary, and will chew through the rest of your sugar. Without a honey boost now, you'll end up with something rather dry. Keep in mind that this yeast can be easily step-fed until it goes up and over the 18% ABV mark, so you'll want monitor its progress no matter what you do.

As for nutrients, I don't think you'll need any more at this stage. I'd rack it fairly soon, add 2 to 3 lbs. more honey, and then watch it work. You can avoid a gusher when mixing in the honey by siphoning off a half-gallon or so into a gallon size or 4-liter jug, mix in your honey there, and then siphon this back into the main batch which you've transfered to Secondary.

Please keep us updated on your progress -- this sounds nice!

-David

Charles Serfoss
11-01-2006, 12:51 AM
Thanks David for the calming influence... ;)

I think I'm getting confused on how adding more honey will get the SG down to something palatible. I've got an order out for another 3-4 lbs of honey that I expect this week, so I'll stick w/ what you and Oskaar suggested then take a few deep breaths and let it do it's thing.

-- Charles

Charles Serfoss
11-04-2006, 12:53 AM
Okay --

I'm done being calm again. I racked, added 3 1/2 lbs more honey and that evening it was slowly bubbling (1 bubble/45 seconds).

Today I get home and I find no bubbling whatsoever and white spots on the surface of the mead. Now should I panic? I'm worried that I've got a bad yeast in there... here's a picture if it helps!

http://picasaweb.google.com/vecmor (http://picasaweb.google.com/vecmor)

:sad1:

Oskaar
11-04-2006, 01:24 AM
Dude,

Relax, that's pretty normal surface activity. Just keep an eye on those spots, if they start to grow and get fuzzy then you have a problem. The process of mixing up your additional honey (you did mix it in didn't you??) just degassed the must so it will take a bit of time to build up the level of carbonation again. You can give it an additional dose of FermaidK (say 4-5 grams) but at this point I'd stay away from DAP since you're to the point of where the yeast are looking for amino nitrogen rather than ammonia nitrogen.

Cheers,

Oskaar

Charles Serfoss
11-04-2006, 04:10 AM
I feel like I should go into therapy for a bit...

Once again, I appreciate all the direction. Those of us new to the art haven't got the background yet on what to worry about and what's "normal". I added 4 grams of the FermaidK -- and while I had mixed the additional honey w/ some of the mix from the primary, I've given it an additional "stirring" to make sure.

So, after this additional hand-holding, I felt that it was time for me to become a full-fledged member -- and that part of the sites not available! No matter -- soon as the site is back up and going, I will do so -- I greatly appreciate your patience with someone who, perhaps some day, can offer the same to others!

-- Charles

Oskaar
11-04-2006, 05:34 AM
No problema!

Remember Oskaarz Mead Mantra!

See the mead
Be the mead
Drink the mead
Repeat

or

Make mead
Age mead
Drink mead
Repeat

Cheers,

Oskaar