View Full Version : Melomels reacting differently - what's going on?

04-24-2010, 11:02 PM
So, I made about 15L of show mead (quite nice stuff), then racked it into 3 different 5L bottles. I added 1 kilo of berries to one, 1 kilo of plums to another, and left he third a show mead. I found I had quite a bit extra - someone hadn't remembered to calculate the size of 2 kilos of fruit in the original recipe - so I dragged out my 4th 5L bottle and half filled it with the rest. I had some leftover apple juice in the fridge, so I dumped that in as well (about 500ml worth) and cut up a Granny Smith apple and threw it in as well.

It all tastes pretty good. But I'm interested in the different reactions the different additions have made. The 4th bottle, 2 days in, is almost completely clarified. The show mead is still totally cloudy. The plums are interesting - it's a little clearer than the show mead, but kind of stratified - a lot of the plums are floating, some are totally sunk, but a few have found the middle of the mead the most interesting place to "float". The fluid underneat is cloudier than on top - perhaps the precipitating yeast is making the bottom layer more dense than the top. Incidentally, the berry melomel is the star of the bunch - it tastes wonderful!

It's the apple addition that has me curious - Why did this one clarify so speedily? A couple of options: There might be some undeclared preservative in the apple juice, killing the remaining yeast and thus clarifying the mead. Or the fruit juice was easier to ferment, increasing the alcohol content beyond the yeast's tolerance, killing them off and clarifying the mead. Or some weird pectin thing I don't understand has been going on. Thoughts?