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Tim27
11-15-2009, 01:48 AM
Hello all to all on the forum. Tonight I just started my first mead, I used;
(5 gallon batch)
15 pounds of Clover honey
~4gallons of spring water
2 pakets of Lalvin 71B-1122(rehydrated)
2 TBS Yeast nutrient
2 TBS Yeast energizer

I am now awaiting signs of airlock activity. I am fermenting in a 6.5 gallon bucket. Does anyone have any recomendations for me? My plan is to keep it in the bucket for around two weeks and the rack to my 5 gallon carboy for the remainder until clear. I can't wait to see if this will all work. I am hoping my yeast was viable.

Thanks, Tim

AToE
11-15-2009, 04:50 AM
Looks like a good start!

With this yeast I would actually really not go by any pre-planned amount of time (I guess that's true of all yeasts though...) and wait until primary is done/almost done before racking to the carboy, in order to leave as much lees behind as possible. Then I would keep an eye on it and when it drops a good amount more lees rack again. And again if necessary. 71B (according to the manufacturer and more experienced members than myself) can cause bad flavours if you leave the lees in contact with the mead for long (few weeks seems to be fine).

That said, most of my batches have been with 71B, and I like it because it is very difficult to starve for nutrients, which makes it good for a first timer, and it (in my opinion based on VERY breif experience) brings out very pleasant fruity flavours that make a light coloured (I've done several clover traditionals) mead taste similar to a fruity white wine.

Don't stress about the lees, just rack every time you see a layer built up - maybe someone else (or the search function) can elaborate on how often to rack with this yeast.

wildaho
11-15-2009, 06:06 AM
My plan is to keep it in the bucket for around two weeks and the rack to my 5 gallon (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/vbglossar.php?do=showentry&item=gallon) carboy (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/vbglossar.php?do=showentry&item=carboy) for the remainder until clear.
Remember that time is a consequence and not a variable (or a constant).

Rely on your hydrometer to know when to do things.

What kind of "yeast nutrients" and "yeast energizers" are you planning to use? And when do you plan to use them? How much of your "nutrient" is amino nitrogen and how much is urea derived? Brand names will help us help you too. There are significant differences between brands and those differences can drastically change the way you approach using them.

All of these will affect how long you can sit in primary before you rack over to your carboy.

Can you give us some more detail on your initial planned gravity? Your expected finishing gravity (and hence, your final expected ABV?) How sweet or dry do you want it to be? How are you preparing the yeast before you pitch it? What is the ambient temperature that you are going to brew at? What is your aeration plan?

What is your general level of brewing knowledge? I'm not trying to overwhelm you here but the more we know, the more we can help you. Like I said, time is a consequence and not a variable. There are a lot of things that can affect that. The more we know, the better we can help you.

You've got a great start on listing your recipe, that helps a bunch. But before we can give you any definitive answers, we need some more info. The more precise you can be, the better we can tailor an answer.

The more we can know about your "nutrients", when you add them, and your aeration regimen are key though. What can you tell us about them?

:cheers:
Wade

Tim27
11-15-2009, 06:56 PM
Great news, my mead is bubling away quite nicely. As far as my process and brand of nutrient and energizer. Firstly I rehydrated my yeast in a small bowl of about 100 degree water. Waited 20 minutes then pitched. The nutrient/energizer brand was for both LD Carlson. The nutrient was diammonium phosphate(urea based). I had pitched the energizer nutrient mix first then pitched the yeast. As far as aeration I used a 24" plastic mash paddle and stirred the heck out of the must for around 6 minutes.

My OG was about 1.120 as near as could tell. I am not really hellbent on getting a certain sweetness. This being my first mead I just want to be able to drink it someday. When I said 2 weeks I knew it was just an estimate. I do have 4 batches of beer and 1 batch of Apfelwein under my belt and I am costantly reading about all things brewing. I suppose I am hoping for a medium sweet mead that will be awesome by Christmas 2010. I hope this is helps as far as more info for giving suggestions.

Thank you for replies, Tim

Tim27
12-04-2009, 10:19 PM
Well it has been almost 3 weeks since I started my mead. I was worried a little about a stuck fermentation. But after my hydrometer reading of 1.000 I guess it is not stuck at all:o. So I went from 1.120 to 1.000 in a little over 2 weeks. Now it is time to rack to my secondary. Oh and even through my plugged up nose from my cold I deffinitely got that heat from the alcohol and could still taste some honey. So I am very happy so far.