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MarsBars
07-11-2011, 11:30 PM
:confused:After making several meads, I have tried two melomels...current is actually a Morat. The first was a blueberry that I started August 2010 with 16 pounds of OB honey in a 5.25 gallon batch. Fermentation was fine and I racked to a secondary that I placed 9 pounds of blueberries in (no camden, just frozen to break them down). I know the rep of Wyeast Sweet Mead yeast (now), but never thought it would ferment down to .990! (It worked fine in my regular sweet meads) That meant the ABV was 16%, not counting for the sugar in the berries. The extra volume made it a little over 5.5 gallons, but very hot. I've added 4# more OB and a half gallon of blueberry juice. The flavor and aroma is great, but still has the young alchohol finish. It now is at 1.020, but topped up in a 6 gallon carboy. The Morat started at 5 gallons @1.120 on 6/17/11 with 71B yeast and racked onto 9 pounds of Mulberries @1.018 ten days later. The Mulberries added half a gallon of volume and is now at 1.000 on 7/11/11. That too exeeds the 71B's normal ABV tolerance of 14%. Am I missing something with the addition and/or volume changes?

Chevette Girl
07-12-2011, 12:48 AM
It might not be quite so high as the juice from most fruits (other than grapes) will not be as sweet (therefore won't have as high of an alcohol potential) as your must and therefore dilutes it a little... I think apple juice is usually somewhere around 1.050, if I recall correctly? Somehow I never wrote it down in my log book though, I'm sure if I'm way off base someone will correct me.

fatbloke
07-12-2011, 06:03 AM
It might not be quite so high as the juice from most fruits (other than grapes) will not be as sweet (therefore won't have as high of an alcohol potential) as your must and therefore dilutes it a little... I think apple juice is usually somewhere around 1.050, if I recall correctly? Somehow I never wrote it down in my log book though, I'm sure if I'm way off base someone will correct me.
No, I won't..... but I was reading some other stuff yesterday, and it was explaining about why sometimes, fruit can taste quite sweet etc.

It was down to non-fermentable sugars in the actual fruit/juice. The problem can sometimes be to do with the fact that non-fermentables also show up in hydrometer readings, skewing the numbers a bit (a lot in a few cases). So while we're not necessarily used to such factors, they can sometimes, need to be remembered when it comes to actually crunching the numbers.

For instance, I can see 71B possibly exceeding the tolerance by perhaps 1 or 2 %, but I certainly can't see Wyeast sweet mead exceeding it by 5%, maybe 1 or 2% .

Either way, as long as MarsBars batches come out tasting good then surely that's all that really matters - plus correctly recorded ingredients, method and technique should make the results repeatable.....

regards

fatbloke

Medsen Fey
07-12-2011, 04:47 PM
It is possible for 71B to go past 14% - folks see that happen with cysers often enough.

In the case of your blueberry batch, if you started with 16 pounds in 5.25 gallons that would be giving a starting gravity of about 1.109 (about 14% potential ABV). If you add in roughly 2/3 gallon of juice with a gravity of around 1.040 (potential ABV 5.5%), the effective potential ABV of your batch was about 13% and if your volume are a bit off, potentially even a bit lower. While that is a little higher than the 11% ABV the Wyeast sweet mead tends to produce, it is certainly possible. It highlight why trying to predict where yeast will stop can be a potentially dangerous game.

MarsBars
07-12-2011, 10:32 PM
Thanks folks, I gues I'm over thinking this. I think I wasted some honey that I could have saved for backsweetening....maybe. I will try not to worry about ABV as much as taste. I am getting ready to bottle my 2 year old Tupelo Mead (speaking of different fermentation) that is just gorgeous and so good. The blueberry tastes like it will come around in it's second year. Like beer? RDWHHB. I still plan to make more mels and show meads....it's still fun and interesting.