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Smokin' Gun
06-01-2011, 02:44 PM
Hello, everyone…my name is John, and I am a Mead Drinker!

This is my first post here, as I have been thinking about posting for quite a while, I guess like all of you, I am search of the perfect mead (especially since my local class IV at MacDill AFB, stopped carrying it)…

I am looking for good mead to drink, I would love to learn how to make it, but don’t know if I can, if I made it...it would probably be a 3/1 Mead (if this is even correct), and since I am single, I would brew it right in the center of my living room!

I hope to learn as much as I can from those of you willing to share, such as brands of good Mead (bottled), as I am sure that each of you has your favorite brew recipe, some secrets to make it better, or add some flavors, although to be honest, I like it plain, however, it never hurts to try new things…and everything else I can learn!

Regards,

John

fatbloke
06-01-2011, 02:58 PM
Hello, everyone…my name is John, and I am a Mead Drinker!

This is my first post here, as I have been thinking about posting for quite a while, I guess like all of you, I am search of the perfect mead (especially since my local class IV at MacDill AFB, stopped carrying it)…

I am looking for good mead to drink, I would love to learn how to make it, but don’t know if I can, if I made it...it would probably be a 3/1 Mead (if this is even correct), and since I am single, I would brew it right in the center of my living room!

I hope to learn as much as I can from those of you willing to share, such as brands of good Mead (bottled), as I am sure that each of you has your favorite brew recipe, some secrets to make it better, or add some flavors, although to be honest, I like it plain, however, it never hurts to try new things…and everything else I can learn!

Regards,

John
Welcome.

The only way you're gonna find the perfect mead, it probably to brew it yourself.

But you'll probably have to work out what type of mead is to your taste, as there's about a million and one combinations of ingredients.....

Give it a go, it's not really that hard, and if you make smaller batches you can have lots of different types on the go at once...

regards

fatbloke

mmclean
06-01-2011, 02:58 PM
Hi John,

Welcome to GOTMEAD?

Try http://www.bnektar.com/ to start.

I recommend you make your own though. Start with a JAO and read the newbee guide, link found to your left. Go from there. We're here to help.

Did some work at MacDill AFB after Andrew took out Homestead. Man that place was hopping.

Smokin' Gun
06-01-2011, 03:27 PM
Hey Guys,

Thanks for the welcome, and thank you for the links, they are much appreciated!

I took a quick look, and looks like I have a lot to learn, but at least I know where to get some mead now!

I used to drink “English Mead”. Originally made by Lurgashall Winery…but by the original owner, but they stopped importing it after he sold the place, and the only place I could get it, locally, was the Class VI, I have two bottles left, and cannot bring myself to drink them, as they are “open in case of emergency” only! LOL!

I have even gone as far as trying to find importers for the new owner (she stated the recipe has not changed), but I have yet to get any assistance from her at all, so…it is somewhat disheartening.

MacDill AFB is more of a hopping place now, that CENTCOM, SOCOM, and a few other COM’s are based there…parking is difficult as every General and Colonel takes up all the parking spaces to include the disabled ones, and they are on active duty! LOL!

Both are you are right, I am probably going to start having to make my own mead, I guess, I would like to learn to make the “old style”, if there is such a thing, just a lot of honey some water, and yeast, and let it go from there, I hope it better than that wine…I tried to make once…years ago, that was a disaster!

Thanks and Regards,

John

Chevette Girl
06-01-2011, 06:25 PM
Welcome aboard, John.

If you like sweeter wines and meads, I highly recommend starting with JAO (Joe's Ancient Orange Mead), it's a really easy recipe and a very good start to figure out what you like. I don't even particularly like orange and I still make this at least once a year.

Smokin' Gun
06-01-2011, 11:01 PM
Hello Chevette Girl

Thanks for the welcome, it is much appreciated and thank you for the tip!

Me, I like a good table wine, and prefer Belgium Beer over that, but really love mead, I actually prefer what I had when I was in Europe, it wasn’t too sweet nor was it bitter, and when I came back, all they had was “English Mead” at the Class VI, so I became used to it.

I don’t know how to explain it, but I bet all of you know what it is, but the best way to say it, is Old School Mead, European style…I don’t know how to explain it any better. Sorry for my lack of mead, Knowles and etiquette.

I found the recipe...


“Recipe Type: All Grain
Yeast: Bread yeast
Yeast Starter: nope
Batch Size (Gallons): 1
Original Gravity: 1.100????
Final Gravity: 1.030?????
Boiling Time (Minutes): 1
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 2 months

Ancient Orange Mead (by Joe Mattioli)
1 gallon batch

3 1/2 lbs Clover or your choice honey or blend (will finish sweet)
1 Large orange (later cut in eights or smaller rind and all)
1 small handful of raisins (25 if you count but more or less ok)
1 stick of cinnamon
1 whole clove ( or 2 if you like - these are potent critters)
optional (a pinch of nutmeg and allspice )( very small )
1 teaspoon of Fleishmann’s bread yeast ( now don't get holy on me--- after all this is an ancient mead and that's all we had back then)
Balance water to one gallon

Process:
Use a clean 1 gallon carboy
Dissolve honey in some warm water and put in carboy
Wash orange well to remove any pesticides and slice in eights --add orange (you can push em through opening big boy -- rinds included -- its ok for this mead -- take my word for it -- ignore the experts)

Put in raisins, clove, cinnamon stick, any optional ingredients and fill to 3 inches from the top with cold water. ( need room for some foam -- you can top off with more water after the first few day frenzy)

Shake the heck out of the jug with top on, of course. This is your sophisticated aeration process.

When at room temperature in your kitchen, put in 1 teaspoon of bread yeast. ( No you don't have to rehydrate it first-- the ancients didn't even have that word in their vocabulary-- just put it in and give it a gentle swirl or not)(The yeast can fight for their own territory)

Install water airlock. Put in dark place. It will start working immediately or in an hour. (Don't use grandma's bread yeast she bought years before she passed away in the 90's)( Wait 3 hours before you panic or call me) After major foaming stops in a few days add some water and then keep your hands off of it. (Don't shake it! Don't mess with them yeastees! Let them alone except its okay to open your cabinet to smell every once in a while.

Racking --- Don't you dare
additional feeding --- NO NO
More stirring or shaking -- Your not listening, don't touch

After 2 months and maybe a few days it will slow down to a stop and clear all by itself. (How about that) (You are not so important after all) Then you can put a hose in with a small cloth filter on the end into the clear part and siphon off the golden nectar. If you wait long enough even the oranges will sink to the bottom but I never waited that long. If it is clear it is ready. You don't need a cold basement. It does better in a kitchen in the dark. (Like in a cabinet) likes a little heat (70-80). If it didn't work out... you screwed up and didn't read my instructions (or used grandma's bread yeast she bought years before she passed away) . If it didn't work out then take up another hobby. Mead is not for you. It is too complicated.
If you were successful, which I am 99% certain you will be, then enjoy your mead. When you get ready to make different mead you will probably have to unlearn some of these practices I have taught you, but hey--- This recipe and procedure works with these ingredients so don't knock it. It was your first mead. It was my tenth. Sometimes, even the experts can forget all they know and make good ancient mead.”
I am going to give it a try, I hope it works…

Regards,

John

fatbloke
06-01-2011, 11:51 PM
Lurgashall winery? Hum! Well IMO there's no accounting for taste ;-D

I'd guess that the owner is concentrating on the wine, as there's a lot of sparkling white made around here. The kind of stuff that passes the french off as it wins the awards that "should" have been for a champagne :-D the mead would just be a sideline.....

If you like your meads like that, then the JAO recipe will do you fine. Actually I find JAO not quite as sweet. But you can always make it up as a 1 US gallon batch, then a 1 imperial gallon batch and a 5 litre batch and see which you prefer. The only difference is the water, just under 4 litres, 4.55 litres and a 5.

If you follow the JAO instructions, it works well. You only need a basic kit and the rest of the ingredients are grocery store stuff.

Smokin' Gun
06-02-2011, 01:18 AM
Lurgashall winery? Hum! Well IMO there's no accounting for taste ;-D

I'd guess that the owner is concentrating on the wine, as there's a lot of sparkling white made around here. The kind of stuff that passes the french off as it wins the awards that "should" have been for a champagne :-D the mead would just be a sideline.....

If you like your meads like that, then the JAO recipe will do you fine. Actually I find JAO not quite as sweet. But you can always make it up as a 1 US gallon batch, then a 1 imperial gallon batch and a 5 litre batch and see which you prefer. The only difference is the water, just under 4 litres, 4.55 litres and a 5.

If you follow the JAO instructions, it works well. You only need a basic kit and the rest of the ingredients are grocery store stuff.

ROTL! Ya, no taste here…good call…LOL!

I had to make do with what I had…ok, No Excuses, I should have joined earlier (as soon as I learned about it), and learned, but it is never too late! I can admit my faults! LOL!

I used to go to the FLA State Fair, here every year, and talk to the Orange Blossom bee keepers, and even the Department Head that regulates Bee Keeping (I was amazed they had one)…and they all promised they knew someone that made good mead, and I would give them my number, and get theirs, but no matter what I did, it never seemed to pan out.

So, I take it you live close to Sarah, that is the new owner, she seems nice, but she said the prior owner was an American, and she didn’t get much from him as far as exporting, so I offered to help, as she said she was doing everything the same.

I am going to give JAO, a go, and see how it pans out...any suggestions or tips on how I should really start, the proper way?

I will try the US gallon first, and see how that goes, and then if can try the imperial!

Regards,

John

mmclean
06-02-2011, 03:57 AM
John,

If your looking for tips, start here (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php?t=6885).

Just follow the recipe.

Loadnabox
06-02-2011, 09:49 AM
Both are you are right, I am probably going to start having to make my own mead, I guess, I would like to learn to make the “old style”, if there is such a thing, just a lot of honey some water, and yeast, and let it go from there, I hope it better than that wine…I tried to make once…years ago, that was a disaster!


This is referred to as a "show mead" around here. This type is generally made fairly dry and is meant to showcase the flavor in a particular variety of honey.

Show meads are the hardest to make, requiring lots of attention in the form of stirring, degassing, aeration and nutrient additions.

If you're going to go for it, make a number of small batches all from the same must then make minor changes like temp, aeration, feeding, or yeast while keeping the rest of the variables the same. This kind of experimentation will help you narrow down how to come up with the show mead that you will like.

Be sure to read as thoroughly as possible through the forums, there's lots of good things to learn before you mix your first batch.

Oh... and it never hurts to make a batch of JAO :)

mmclean
06-02-2011, 10:59 AM
A show mead is made with only honey, water and yeast. Add nutrients but no other flavorings and you have a traditional.

There is really no reason to make a show mead other than to "show" that you can.

Loadnabox
06-02-2011, 12:41 PM
A show mead is made with only honey, water and yeast. Add nutrients but no other flavorings and you have a traditional.

There is really no reason to make a show mead other than to "show" that you can.

good point, thanks for the correction MM

Smokin' Gun
06-03-2011, 12:48 AM
John,

If your looking for tips, start here (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php?t=6885).

Just follow the recipe.

Hello Mmclean,

Thank you the tip, and the link, it is appreciated! Now I have to purchase all the items and start, seems simple enough, although the specific gravity thing has me, but I don’t think I need, it, if I am wrong correct me!

Thanks and Regards,

John

AToE
06-03-2011, 12:53 AM
If you'd also like a recipe for a simple "traditional" mead with just honey, water, yeast and nutrients (and possibly some wonderful oaking) let me know and I'll tell you a dead easy one to do. The only thing is figuring out how sweet/dry you'll want it.

Smokin' Gun
06-03-2011, 12:54 AM
This is referred to as a "show mead" around here. This type is generally made fairly dry and is meant to showcase the flavor in a particular variety of honey.

Show meads are the hardest to make, requiring lots of attention in the form of stirring, degassing, aeration and nutrient additions.

If you're going to go for it, make a number of small batches all from the same must then make minor changes like temp, aeration, feeding, or yeast while keeping the rest of the variables the same. This kind of experimentation will help you narrow down how to come up with the show mead that you will like.

Be sure to read as thoroughly as possible through the forums, there's lots of good things to learn before you mix your first batch.

Oh... and it never hurts to make a batch of JAO :)

Hello Loadnabox,

Thank you for the name of it, I never knew it was called “show mead”, and I didn’t know it was the hardest to make!

I am going to go with your advice and everyone else and make the JOA, as that seems doable for my skill level!

If I ever get good at it, I will try just plain old “Show Mead”

I am very excited, now to purchase all the stuff, mix and wait…LOL!

Thanks and Regards,

John

AToE
06-03-2011, 12:58 AM
It should be mentioned that while a traditional and a show mead can end up being essentially the same thing in regards to the finished product, show meads are hard to make, traditionals aren't hard (making a great one is, but making a great anything when you start can be tough!), because traditionals can use nutrients, making your life waaaaay easier!

Smokin' Gun
06-03-2011, 01:09 AM
If you'd also like a recipe for a simple "traditional" mead with just honey, water, yeast and nutrients (and possibly some wonderful oaking) let me know and I'll tell you a dead easy one to do. The only thing is figuring out how sweet/dry you'll want it.

Hello AToE,

I would love a simple Honey Water and Yeast Recipe, I didn’t learn about the nutrients until today, but if it is easy, I would love to try it, which one should be my first try the JOA, or your simple recipe?

Not too sweet, not too dry, a little more sweet than dry I guess.

I know I like traditional Mead, the question is can I pull it off correctly or at least make a good batch my first go.

Thanks and Regards,

John

kudapucat
06-03-2011, 02:31 AM
Definitely the JAO.
It will be ready quicker, so you'll learn faster.

If you can, get a hold of a book or two, and read the newbee guide from front to back. Ken Schramm's 'The Compleat Meadmaker' was very helpul for me, (and plugged gotmead I think, so was instrumental in me being here )

TheAlchemist
06-03-2011, 08:29 AM
Ken Schramm is good for science, Pam Spence is good for Alchemy and history.

commonsenseman
06-03-2011, 12:15 PM
Welcome to the forum Mr Gun!

Be sure to start a brewlog for us to follow once you get some stuff going!

AToE
06-03-2011, 12:33 PM
Do the JAO first, as it'll be ready to drink in a few months, or less, or more, depending on who you talk to!

A traditional mead can be easy, but requires patience. You need to make it, then wait, and wait and wait. At 6 months it'll seem like it's great, you'll want to drink it all, tastes just like white wine... no touching! It stays out of bottles until it's at least 1 year old. If you want to drink some sooner to learn how it ages and to satisfy your non-patience (which we all have when we start) then make 2 gallons, bottle one after 4-6 months, the other wait at least a year. The problem is that once it hits bottles, it tends to dissapear fast, especially if you only made a gallon!

Let me do some thinking and I'll try to come up with a basic recipe for you. One part that IS tricky, is that other than JAO, sweet meads should be stabilized with sulphite and sorbate before bottling, to prevent them from ever "waking up" again, fermenting more and creating grenades. I personally do almost only dry meads (which after a year stop seeming so dry, they actually have a lot of "implied sweetness"), which do not require stabilizing, so I never really learned the proper dosages, I'll have to look them up for you.

AToE
06-03-2011, 04:26 PM
Ok, I've been doing some thinking about a really basic starter recipe for traditional mead. You say you like European mead, but that's like saying you like European food - which kind?! ;)

Were you in Eastern Europe by chance? Most of the Eastern European meads are extremely sweet and aged for very long times. Actually I think most of the meads I've seen out of Europe have been pretty sweet, but I'm sure there's as much variety over there as there is over here, which is nearly endless!

The best way for us to figure out what sweetness level is going to work for you would be if you could buy some mead you like, pour some into a test tube with a hydrometer and measure it's specific gravity at room temp.

Failing that, we could always just start "barely sweet" and then after some aging you can taste it and add more honey if necessary.

We'll also need to pick an alcohol % to help us chose which yeast to use.

Then's the fun part - what kinds of honey do you have access to locally?

Medsen Fey
06-03-2011, 07:24 PM
You have some great honey that's not far away. Walker farms (http://walkerfarmshoney.com/) in Fort myers has some wonderful honey and there are several other good sources here in Florida. The biggest challenge you will find is temperature control. Fermenting in the 70s and 80s can be rough, so an old fridge with a temperature controller so you can ferment in the 60s is worth every penny.

Joe's ancient orange recipe which you found works well at room temp and will give you a sweet orange mead that will be consistently good if you like it sweet. If you actually let age after bottling for another 6-9 months you'll find it gets even better.

If you want to make a traditional mead, I'd suggest something along the following lines:

Orange Blossom Honey 3 pounds
Spring water to 1 gallons (gravity target 1.100)
Cream of Tartar 1 tsp
Yeast nutrient (DAP) 1/2 tsp
Yeast energizer (Fermaid K) 1 tsp
Lalvin K1-V1116 yeast 1 packet

Mix the honey and water. No heating required. Rehydrate the yeast in 100F water for 15 minutes then pitch it in. When the bubbling starts to be visible, add 1/2 of the nutrient/energizer. Open the fermenter and stir/aerate daily for the first 2 days. When the gravity gets to 1.070, add the remaining nutrient/energizer and seal up the fermenter. Swirl it daily until it is done - that will be when the gravity stops dropping (and it should be below 0.999).

Then you can rack it to a another gallon container and fill up the air space with water and keep it sitting until clear (you can put it in a fridge and that will speed the clearing). When it is clear, you can bottle it and let age for at least 1 year. That will give you a nice, dry orange blossom traditional mead that will be a good place to start.

You can decide it you want to make future batches with other additives, like acid blend or tannin, or oak, or whether you want to try it sweeter. However, you'll have a good basis to judge from and you'll be able to compare new batches to this one to see if you like the tweaks you make in the future. If you scale this recipe up the 3 or 5 gallons, you'll have enough bottles to really let it age, and to have it for comparison for many years.

I hope that helps.

Medsen

Smokin' Gun
06-03-2011, 08:50 PM
Definitely the JAO.
It will be ready quicker, so you'll learn faster.

If you can, get a hold of a book or two, and read the newbee guide from front to back. Ken Schramm's 'The Compleat Meadmaker' was very helpul for me, (and plugged gotmead I think, so was instrumental in me being here )

Hello Kudapucat,

Thank you for the tip…JOA it is! Also, thank you for the book recommendation, I ordered a new copy, and I will read it, I purchased one a long time ago, but it was pretty much a useless book, at least to me, small paperback, that was not easy to read! LOL!

Thanks and Regards,

John

Smokin' Gun
06-03-2011, 08:52 PM
Welcome to the forum Mr Gun!

Be sure to start a brewlog for us to follow once you get some stuff going!

Hello Commonsenseman,

Thank you for the welcome, will do on the brew log, now to find a good one to follow!

Thanks and Regards,

John

Smokin' Gun
06-03-2011, 09:00 PM
Do the JAO first, as it'll be ready to drink in a few months, or less, or more, depending on who you talk to!

A traditional mead can be easy, but requires patience. You need to make it, then wait, and wait and wait. At 6 months it'll seem like it's great, you'll want to drink it all, tastes just like white wine... no touching! It stays out of bottles until it's at least 1 year old. If you want to drink some sooner to learn how it ages and to satisfy your non-patience (which we all have when we start) then make 2 gallons, bottle one after 4-6 months, the other wait at least a year. The problem is that once it hits bottles, it tends to dissapear fast, especially if you only made a gallon!

Let me do some thinking and I'll try to come up with a basic recipe for you. One part that IS tricky, is that other than JAO, sweet meads should be stabilized with sulphite and sorbate before bottling, to prevent them from ever "waking up" again, fermenting more and creating grenades. I personally do almost only dry meads (which after a year stop seeming so dry, they actually have a lot of "implied sweetness"), which do not require stabilizing, so I never really learned the proper dosages, I'll have to look them up for you.

LOL! I am getting one heck of a learning lesson, this is a lot to take in for someone who tried to make wine once, and that was a disaster! LOL!

Wow, a whole year of waiting, that can drive someone to drink! LOL! Luckily, from being a former Paratrooper, I am used to “hurry up and wait”, and I have a lot of patience!

All the while, I was thinking this was going to be a simple task, I am sure it is, was you are a Brewmaster!

I like heavy mead, thick, not like wine, that is mildly sweet, however, no too sweet…

I guess I need to start buying all the meads I can find, and then I can decide as to which is my favorite and attempt to go from there.

Thanks for you assistance, it is much appreciated!

Smokin' Gun
06-03-2011, 09:10 PM
Ok, I've been doing some thinking about a really basic starter recipe for traditional mead. You say you like European mead, but that's like saying you like European food - which kind?! ;)

Were you in Eastern Europe by chance? Most of the Eastern European meads are extremely sweet and aged for very long times. Actually I think most of the meads I've seen out of Europe have been pretty sweet, but I'm sure there's as much variety over there as there is over here, which is nearly endless!

The best way for us to figure out what sweetness level is going to work for you would be if you could buy some mead you like, pour some into a test tube with a hydrometer and measure it's specific gravity at room temp.

Failing that, we could always just start "barely sweet" and then after some aging you can taste it and add more honey if necessary.

We'll also need to pick an alcohol % to help us chose which yeast to use.

Then's the fun part - what kinds of honey do you have access to locally?

Well, like I stated earlier, I like thicker mead, unlike honey wine, and I like it a tad sweeter than drier…

I have had Polish mead, the one that comes in the fancy bottle, that was good, but I had that here in the U.S., was very heavy on the honey.

I guess, I like European mead, just not sweet like a desert wine.

I have had some good homemade mead, in Europe, the best was in Denmark, I have a friend who lives there, and I am going to call him and ask if he can get some mead for me, and sent it to me.

But you are correct, most are pretty sweet, but I don’t want it too sweet, but at this point, I am willing to take what I can get juts to have some! LOL!

I never knew there was so much to mead, and so many variations. I don’t want to get too complicated, I just want to sit back and drink it out of a glass and just enjoy it.

Most of the med I have seen is I believe between 12% to 19%, but I am not wanting to get drunk off it, I just want to enjoy it!

Mostly my area, it is all Orange Blossom Honey. I remember there was a really nice honey farm, in lower Daytona, back when I was in flight school, they even had blueberry flower honey, don’t know where that came from, but it was nice!

Next on list to purchase is a hydrometer!

Smokin' Gun
06-03-2011, 09:20 PM
You have some great honey that's not far away. Walker farms (http://walkerfarmshoney.com/) in Fort myers has some wonderful honey and there are several other good sources here in Florida. The biggest challenge you will find is temperature control. Fermenting in the 70s and 80s can be rough, so an old fridge with a temperature controller so you can ferment in the 60s is worth every penny.

Joe's ancient orange recipe which you found works well at room temp and will give you a sweet orange mead that will be consistently good if you like it sweet. If you actually let age after bottling for another 6-9 months you'll find it gets even better.

If you want to make a traditional mead, I'd suggest something along the following lines:

Orange Blossom Honey 3 pounds
Spring water to 1 gallons (gravity target 1.100)
Cream of Tartar 1 tsp
Yeast nutrient (DAP) 1/2 tsp
Yeast energizer (Fermaid K) 1 tsp
Lalvin K1-V1116 yeast 1 packet

Mix the honey and water. No heating required. Rehydrate the yeast in 100F water for 15 minutes then pitch it in. When the bubbling starts to be visible, add 1/2 of the nutrient/energizer. Open the fermenter and stir/aerate daily for the first 2 days. When the gravity gets to 1.070, add the remaining nutrient/energizer and seal up the fermenter. Swirl it daily until it is done - that will be when the gravity stops dropping (and it should be below 0.999).

Then you can rack it to a another gallon container and fill up the air space with water and keep it sitting until clear (you can put it in a fridge and that will speed the clearing). When it is clear, you can bottle it and let age for at least 1 year. That will give you a nice, dry orange blossom traditional mead that will be a good place to start.

You can decide it you want to make future batches with other additives, like acid blend or tannin, or oak, or whether you want to try it sweeter. However, you'll have a good basis to judge from and you'll be able to compare new batches to this one to see if you like the tweaks you make in the future. If you scale this recipe up the 3 or 5 gallons, you'll have enough bottles to really let it age, and to have it for comparison for many years.

I hope that helps.

Medsen

Hello Medsen,

I will look into walker farms, I also have a friend, she has a bee farm, I have had some of her honey, and it is great!

No problem on the five of them in the main house, and one of them in the guesthouse (really a mother in law suite), I live alone, so anyone of them, more than likely my beer tap will be converted to mead making.

It is a good thing I am patient, it seems it will be a very long time, before, I even drink my first batch of mead!

Thank you for the recipe, it sounds like it will be good when I am done…so, I am looking at least 2013 before, I can realistically drink my first batch of mead (looks like I will be purchasing a lot of pre-made mead)!

It does help a lot!

Thanks and Regards,

John

Medsen Fey
06-03-2011, 09:30 PM
You can drink mead sooner, and JAO should be pretty good within 9 months, but most traditional meads really don't shine without 18+ months aging. You can make recipes that will be ready faster, but you need to be able to ferment them cool, and it helps to leave them a little sweet. If you are fermenting in the heat you're pretty much stuck aging.

If you can keep the fermentation temp in the 60's, you can try some other yeast that may allow you to make something ready to drink much sooner.

Does your friend with a bee farm have a website?

Chevette Girl
06-04-2011, 03:58 PM
Oh, and don't be afraid of specific gravities and your hydrometer (yes, you want to get at least one)... let us know after you read the newbee guide if you're still cofuzzed on the specifics and we'll get you straightened out... Basically it tells you how much sugar is in your sample, and by knowing how much sugar your yeast ate by taking a measurement at the beginning and another at the end of fermentation, you can calculate the alcohol percentage of your finished product. Also it's useful for telling you if your fermentation is over, which is an important thing to be sure of before you bottle it or else things could get messy if you're lucky, worse if you're not.

Sounds like you should get yourself 3.5 lb honey and get started on a JAO, the sooner you start it, the sooner you can drink it and find out if you like it! And it's actually drinkable after 2-3 months, just gets BETTER after 6-9 :) And if you don't have a 1-gallon jug to use, plastic 1-gal water or juice jugs will do while you're waiting to get better equipment.

Smokin' Gun
06-04-2011, 09:22 PM
You can drink mead sooner, and JAO should be pretty good within 9 months, but most traditional meads really don't shine without 18+ months aging. You can make recipes that will be ready faster, but you need to be able to ferment them cool, and it helps to leave them a little sweet. If you are fermenting in the heat you're pretty much stuck aging.

If you can keep the fermentation temp in the 60's, you can try some other yeast that may allow you to make something ready to drink much sooner.

Does your friend with a bee farm have a website?

Hey Medsen,

Her name is Claire Robinson, I had to call my ex who is a closer friend to her, than I am, to get the info (Claire’s address and her number for you, she doesn’t have a website), as I never been to her place, my ex has, as she lives in St. Pete (I do not leave the house much, have not since the end of 2006, I am a 100% Service Connected Disabled Veteran, that recently became Housebound and Bedbound, everything finally caught up with me, I get around a little bit, not as much as I used to, which is why I do not go to the State Fair anymore, so leaving the house is something I only do when I go to the hosp, the rest of the time, I am here), I just had the honey (it was good), and she was going to teach my ex beekeeping (she wanted yet another hobby), and set up everything on the property, but I put a stop to that...Claire had a baby, apparently got divorced, and move back to Mass, to live with her parents, which shows you how far out the loop I am on certain things, she has her email, and she said she would email Claire, to get all the information on beekeepers and bee farms in this area, so when I get the info emailed to me, I will post it for you, I will call anther friend who knows everyone in the Brandon area, as he is the only person I know who is native to this area, and ask him as well.

Nine months isn’t too bad, I guess, 2012, will be my first batch of mead! LOL! I can ferment them cool, as I have a few refrigerators, that I can dedicate to making mead. I keep the house cold, so there would really be no heat her, my internal thermostat, doesn’t work and I overheat easy, so the cool house, and the fridge, will lessen the aging process.

Would it be better to age, or to keep cool in the fridge, as you can tell by now, I have nothing but time, and I am very patient!

John

Smokin' Gun
06-04-2011, 09:34 PM
Oh, and don't be afraid of specific gravities and your hydrometer (yes, you want to get at least one)... let us know after you read the newbee guide if you're still cofuzzed on the specifics and we'll get you straightened out... Basically it tells you how much sugar is in your sample, and by knowing how much sugar your yeast ate by taking a measurement at the beginning and another at the end of fermentation, you can calculate the alcohol percentage of your finished product. Also it's useful for telling you if your fermentation is over, which is an important thing to be sure of before you bottle it or else things could get messy if you're lucky, worse if you're not.

Sounds like you should get yourself 3.5 lb honey and get started on a JAO, the sooner you start it, the sooner you can drink it and find out if you like it! And it's actually drinkable after 2-3 months, just gets BETTER after 6-9 :) And if you don't have a 1-gallon jug to use, plastic 1-gal water or juice jugs will do while you're waiting to get better equipment.

You caught me, little intimidated by specific gravity, as the hosp and my doctor always talk about that! LOL!

Thanks for the clarification, now I get it, the explanation make perfect sense!

I have a friend who used to own a winery back home in NC, and our course they made sparkling wine, I used to go help to try to learn, I have seen what bottle under pressure can do, they when they used to Riddle the wine to get it to ferment again to make sparkling wine, the explosions, mess and overall disaster it created, was not something you wanted to be around when it happened! LOL!

The gallon jug, make me smile, it brought back memories, of when I was in the Army, and we made hooch, OJ (big frozen concentrate),a little water, sugar, and yeast from the cooks, and we buried, and within a week (is we moved, guys would jump it into the next location and bury it), you had something to drink with alcohol, some guys loved it, of course they were the unit drunks, but it was fun times, when were deployed or in the field, I watches someone take a clean toilet on a deployment, and I still don’t know how he treaded to get it, and made beer in it…

Getting the 3.5LBS as soon as I can so I can start, I am very excited about this!

Smokin' Gun
06-05-2011, 03:08 PM
For those of you interested, a friend emailed me with contact information of a Honey Farm in North FLA, which sells Wild Flower Honey (Yopon and Gallberry Flower) for $11.99 for 3 lbs., of honey…plus shipping.

They are collecting 200 hives tomorrow morning (6/6/11), for next year’s honey supply.

They are a Health Depart Licensed, Bottler, and been in business for more than 35 years.

Here is their contact information:

C & C HONEY FARM
3030 CICALEE LN
PACE, FL 32571
Phone: 850- 995-1304
Cell #: 850-602-0385
Email: pcchoney@aol.com
Contact Person: Mr. Chester Kapers

I contact them and they stated they are willing to ship anywhere, and prices are negotiable, over 10lbs., of honey and possibly over 5lbs., of honey.

Give them a try!

I hope this help,

Regards,

John

Smokin' Gun
06-05-2011, 03:17 PM
If appropriate, where else in this forum, should I post this information about the Bee Farm, if it is allowed?

Thanks and Regards,

John

Oskaar
06-05-2011, 04:05 PM
Hello New Smokin' Gun,

Welcome to Got Mead?

Your posts are fine right here. If you have more questions on meadmaking I'd suggest that you post in the new meadmakers (newbees) area above in the forums.

Otherwise, you're just fine here. This is kind of the catchall forum for everything else so pretty much everything is fair game. For meadmaking questions, ingredients, etc check out the other topic threads in some of the other threads above as mentioned before.

Once again, Welcome to Got Mead? and we wish you the very best in mead, meadmaking and mead drinking!

Smokin' Gun
06-05-2011, 07:22 PM
Hello New Smokin' Gun,

Welcome to Got Mead?

Your posts are fine right here. If you have more questions on meadmaking I'd suggest that you post in the new meadmakers (newbees) area above in the forums.

Otherwise, you're just fine here. This is kind of the catchall forum for everything else so pretty much everything is fair game. For meadmaking questions, ingredients, etc check out the other topic threads in some of the other threads above as mentioned before.

Once again, Welcome to Got Mead? and we wish you the very best in mead, meadmaking and mead drinking!

Hello Oskaar,

Thank you for the welcome, you are from what I hear the "big chief", I am sorry that I put this in the wrong section, I looked and I swear that I did not see the NEWBEE Section, please move the thread, to the appropriate place, should you want, as this is your forum.

I look forward to learning, and making some great mead, in a few years…LOL!

Thanks and Regards,

John