View Full Version : Flavor difference between wine and beer bottles

01-21-2008, 09:34 AM
For my first batch of Mead, I bottled half in wine bottles and half in beer bottles. It turns out that I bottled a little early and had some corks flying because it carbonated iteself. The question I have is why did the mead in the bottles that blew the corks taste so incredibly good while the beer bottles and wine bottles that did not open still taste yeasty over a year from brewing?

I talked to the people at the local brewstore and they had no real ideas for me. I was thinking of popping the tops off all my bottles and recapping them just to see if it would help. The saffron metheglin I made for my second batch is pretty hot and still has a yeasty flavor that I would like to get rid of.

01-21-2008, 11:48 AM
I don't think that anyone's ever done a quantitative side-by-side comparison of mead in beer bottles (capped with crown caps) vs mead in corked wine bottles, but I'd guess that you're tasting the differences in aging that occur between hermetically sealed containers and those with slightly gas permeable seals. I have read reports discussing similar differences in flavor profiles with wines using the early versions of synthetic (plastic) wine bottle corks (which sealed completely - as do properly seated crown caps) and the same wines in bottles behind natural cork. I would guess that the difference is due at least to the ability of micro-oxygenation to mature the flavor of the mead in corked wine bottles more quickly than the mead in perfectly sealed beer bottles. It's only a guess, but my own experience with beer vs wine bottles parallels yours, and I bottle all my still meads in corked wine bottles because of it.

01-21-2008, 07:01 PM
I think wayneb is right on here about the micro-oxygenation but let me throw in another factor too. Bulk aging. The larger volume of a wine bottle allows more of the same reactions to occur than in the 12oz bottle. It's why we bulk age in the carboy before bottling, to let those mellowings occur more evenly

I've noted significant differences in beers I've bottled in 1.5liter bottles, 750ml bottles and 12 oz bottles: all from the same batch of beer. In one batch, I even threw in a Jereboam just for grins ;D

01-21-2008, 09:15 PM
Are we understanding correctly that only the corked wine bottles that blew their corks tasted good while corked wine bottles that didn't blow their corks and capped beer bottles tastes less good? How long were these bottles sitting without the corks in them? How did the "unblown" corked bottles(same volume as the blown cork bottles?) taste in comparison to the capped bottles?( lesser volume bottles?)