View Full Version : Melomel by kit

03-21-2008, 10:15 AM
Hi everyone! I got hooked on mead making somehow, don't ask - it just sort of happened. I live up in the north country, so the fermenting happens in my kitchen which is always comfy and warm.

My farm currently is bantam chickens (laying eggs like crazy), ducks, geese, dairy goats, dogs, and 18 acres in need of TLC.

I made my first batch of sweet mead last summer and bottled in November. Started raspberry melomel from a kit and bottled it a week ago, but there was still a fair amount of sediment, so I re-bottled it. I did not use a clarifying agent.

I did sample the melomel, however, during the bottling and didn't care for it. It had a watery, kind of bitter taste, but the after taste wasn't too bad. I expected some harshness due to the youth of the mead, but didn't expect the bitterness. It wasn't toxic or awful, just a bit bitter, and the fruit flavor was very subtle.

Okay the question is, will this bitterness, perhaps, disappear over time? Next question (book and readings give different answers), how important is it to minimize the sediment in melomels? This particular kid includes raspberry puree in cans.

The folks at the supply outfit have recommended I use extra water and honey to fill up the 6-gallon carboy for best fermentation, and the kit makes 5 gallons, so in both mead batches I've used extra water and honey, but didn't add more fruit puree. Next time I make melomel, I plan to use fresh or frozen fruit and use some sort of bag -- no more canned puree.

What might cause bitterness? I used spring water, since my tap water is softened and full of iron; sanitized with One Step; used clean unused bottles; plastic primary, well sanitized; glass carboy ditto; 3-month fermentation in secondary carboy. There was slight fizzing while re-bottling; and the melomel's appearance is a lovely clear garnet. So my only concern, really, is that bitterness.

Medsen Fey
03-21-2008, 10:40 AM
Welcome ClairedeLune!

The bitterness will likely improve with time over the next several months (or years) - give it plenty of time. Yeast in solution also have some bitter flavor, and if you still had a lot of sediment, letting it all clear will have the mead tasting less bitter as well.

Tannins from the fruit seeds and skins cause bitterness/astringency. They do tend to bind, settle and mellow with age, and their presence may give a melomel great aging potential

Good meading!

03-21-2008, 10:45 AM
hi Clair
im new to mead making, and just started my first batch. im doing a cherry melomel. the guys in here are great and will give you a world of good advice. the certinly helped me before i made to many mistakes, and helped me to fix some of the ones i made. i can tell you one thing that will help them help you. give them your list of ingrediants, and the procedure you used.
as the guys in here have said to me " welcome to your new adiction" i know im addicted
good luck and Wassail

03-21-2008, 11:05 AM

exactly what Medson said. With melomels, I would recommend at least 2 rackings before bottling. I also would wait longer before bottling. the fact that you got that much sediment in the bottles means you probably bottled too early. bulk aging in a carboy is also a really good idea!


03-21-2008, 02:03 PM
Okay! Thanks! :cheers: This is great news (I live and learn) ;D I love doing this, and definitely have the patience to wait :icon_study: for good mead :drunken_smilie:. One of these days, I may even get bees.

But for now, I'm going to experiment with another batch of sweet and a batch of melomel. Thanks again, everyone! Thanks for the advice, dennymcc, will do.

03-21-2008, 02:10 PM
yea fed-ex just ran, im off to buy honey. my problem is, so many recpies so little time.

03-21-2008, 04:26 PM
Welcome to Gotmead ClairdeLune! :cheers:

This community has helped me greatly on improving my mead making techniques. So much knowledge to be shared. I startred off making mead with two batches, one blackberry mead and a blueberry mead. The blackberry turned out amazing, but I lost the blueberry batch because I didnt know much about managing the fruit cap and it spoiled. But stumbled across gotmead and learned alot about each step to making great mead.