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mjdtexan
03-05-2009, 11:53 AM
What would happen if you tried to ferment 1 gallon of honey with no water? :confused: If it could be done, which yeast would one use?

Medsen Fey
03-05-2009, 12:04 PM
What would happen if you tried to ferment 1 gallon of honey with no water? :confused: If it could be done, which yeast would one use?

You would waste your yeast.

The gravity of honey is so high that it will suck the water out of the yeast and choke them. This is one of the reasons you can leave honey in a container in your pantry without it spoiling, and also why you don't need to pasteurize honey musts. Very few things can survive in honey.

TheRabidKumquat
03-05-2009, 12:05 PM
It's too highly concentrated with sugar. If it could be done, I'd fear for the rest of my honey, and other sugars, in the house.

Brimminghorn
03-05-2009, 05:29 PM
Yeast are naturally present in honey, but the amount of sugars in honey are so concentrated that it does not ferment in the hive. The bees do a great job of keeping the moisture content of the honey below 18% so it does not ferment. Even if the moisture content got above 18% in the hive only a small amount of alcohol would be produced. Like Medsen said it would be a waste of yeast , I would just make a high gravity sack mead if you are looking to brew something strong and sweet.

Cheers,
Jon

mjdtexan
03-05-2009, 09:19 PM
, I would just make a high gravity sack mead if you are looking to brew something strong and sweet.

Cheers,
Jon

No no, I am not looking for something that strong or sweet. I was just curious is all. Thank All of Yall for the information.

knowlesbrew
03-06-2009, 10:03 AM
What would happen if you tried half and half, 6lbs of honey in a one gallon batch, and used some of that crazy tubro yeast that will get you around 20% in like 4 days. The Potential ABV would be 30% but it would be nice to have some sweetness left over to cut through the alcohol.

It sounds interesting I might try it but with 5 lbs of honey instead.

Medsen Fey
03-06-2009, 10:22 AM
It won't really work well either, though you might get it to start.

About the highest level of gravity that you can get yeast to start in is about 42 Brix (SG 1.190, 500 g/l sugar). This is about the max for Icewine production. Certainly by 550 g/l sugar, it will choke the yeast. When yeast do start at very high gravity the osmotic stress on them (trying to keep the water from being sucked out) causes them to divert more energy into generating glycerol to retain the water, with acetic acid produced as a by product. Less energy is available for fermenting.

At those high gravities the yeast don't reach as high a biomass, they frequently get stuck, and the total amount of sugar fermented may actually be lower than if you started at a more modest gravity level.

If you give it a try, please post up the details so we can learn with you. I'll be interested to see it in a mead. My one suggestion would be to do it in a large bucket so that if it doesn't ferment, you can add enough water to dilute it down to a level that will work - sure wouldn't want good honey to go to waste. :)

knowlesbrew
03-06-2009, 01:28 PM
At 5 lbs of honey in a one gallon batch, according to the caluclator I would get a SG of 1.183, which would be right under your mark of 1.190, I could even dilute it like you said if it didnt start.

I think I might try it. Any idea of how long it would take to properly age something like this haha.

I def think I will do a one gallon batch though, it would be a huge investment of honey to get it up to 1.180 in a five gallon. Especailly if I didnt know what was goign to happen.

I will make a thread for it once I get the stuff and have a plan for everything.


It won't really work well either, though you might get it to start.

About the highest level of gravity that you can get yeast to start in is about 42 Brix (SG 1.190, 500 g/l sugar). This is about the max for Icewine production. Certainly by 550 g/l sugar, it will choke the yeast. When yeast do start at very high gravity the osmotic stress on them (trying to keep the water from being sucked out) causes them to divert more energy into generating glycerol to retain the water, with acetic acid produced as a by product. Less energy is available for fermenting.

At those high gravities the yeast don't reach as high a biomass, they frequently get stuck, and the total amount of sugar fermented may actually be lower than if you started at a more modest gravity level.

If you give it a try, please post up the details so we can learn with you. I'll be interested to see it in a mead. My one suggestion would be to do it in a large bucket so that if it doesn't ferment, you can add enough water to dilute it down to a level that will work - sure wouldn't want good honey to go to waste. :)

Brimminghorn
03-06-2009, 07:16 PM
What would happen if you tried half and half, 6lbs of honey in a one gallon batch, and used some of that crazy tubro yeast that will get you around 20% in like 4 days. The Potential ABV would be 30% but it would be nice to have some sweetness left over to cut through the alcohol.

It sounds interesting I might try it but with 5 lbs of honey instead.

Turbo yeast will make a gross tasting mead I've did a step fed batch before using this yeast. Turbo yeast has a ton of yeast nutrient mixed in with it also, probably DAP.The nutrient taste carries over in the final mead, kind of a meaty and mineral like flavor. This yeast is designed for distilling and making liquors and not really for making quality meads. In the distilling process the final flavor of the must, mash, or wash is really not that important because the alcohol produced is going to be distilled out of it.

Cheers,
Jon

beekind
03-06-2009, 08:11 PM
i believe 6 lbs of honey/1 gallon is called a dwojniak (someone correct me if i am wrong). i have two gallons that's been fermenting since winter solstice. it's still chugging away-though very slowly, now. in the beginning it behaved no differently than any other meads (big blow-off in the beginning). i've racked only once, but will be racking again this weekend and will be checking the gravity.

for one gallon:
6 lbs local wildflower honey
2t energizer
2.75t nutrient
lalvin ec-1118 yeast

i goofed the starting gravity reading, but as you can guess, it was pretty high.
i found the recipe online. it's called "CE Gaines Polish Mead". Unfortunately, i just wrote it down and don't have a link to paste. the recipe he has is a bit different as he has irish moss and gypsum in it.
good luck with your recipe.
-:icon_thumright:dave

knowlesbrew
03-06-2009, 08:51 PM
What gravity is it down too? Did you add more energizer at different steps?


i believe 6 lbs of honey/1 gallon is called a dwojniak (someone correct me if i am wrong). i have two gallons that's been fermenting since winter solstice. it's still chugging away-though very slowly, now. in the beginning it behaved no differently than any other meads (big blow-off in the beginning). i've racked only once, but will be racking again this weekend and will be checking the gravity.

for one gallon:
6 lbs local wildflower honey
2t energizer
2.75t nutrient
lalvin ec-1118 yeast

i goofed the starting gravity reading, but as you can guess, it was pretty high.
i found the recipe online. it's called "CE Gaines Polish Mead". Unfortunately, i just wrote it down and don't have a link to paste. the recipe he has is a bit different as he has irish moss and gypsum in it.
good luck with your recipe.
-:icon_thumright:dave

sandman
03-06-2009, 10:44 PM
I've got 2 Dwojniaks aging right now. Basically to get one you need to start at a lower gravity then step feed it a bit. Once you get up to about 16-18% dump in the rest of your honey. It'll stall out and you'll end up with a Dwojniak. Very sweet, very thick, and if done right, VERY tasty. Great for an after dinner apertif.

I started mine at about 1.135 and went from there. It can be tricky, but it's well worth it in the end.

:cheers:

beekind
03-07-2009, 04:04 PM
i'm gonna start a new thread, because i'm getting ready to ask for advice, and i don't want to hijack this thread.
-dave

Kee
03-07-2009, 04:06 PM
What would happen if you tried to ferment 1 gallon of honey with no water?

If it could be done, everyone would know about mead! And just think what raw honey prices would run.