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View Full Version : Would like to make this sparkling-comments please



wader
05-09-2012, 11:33 AM
I started this 5 gal batch about a week ago in a 6 gal bucket for primary. Starting SG was 1.085. I racked into 6 gal carboy when it reached 1.020. Today it is getting close to 1.000. Looks like I'll be racking to a 5 gal carboy in a day or two.

I'd like to try making this a sparkling mead. I've read that you can add 1/2 cup of honey to 16 oz of boiling water then stir it into the mead just before bottling. It's supposed create about 2 atmospheres of pressure which is simular to beer.

Has anyone tried this? I will be using champagn bottles and caps.

Also, I'm assuming I wouldn't use stablizers (campden tablets) before bottling so there'd still be some yeast left to ferment the added honey.

Here's my recipe:

Cyser:
* 9 Pounds of Honey
* 2-1/2 Gallons of Apple Juice
* 2 Tablespoons of Yeast Energizer
* 4-1/2 Tablespoons of Acid Blend
* 3/4 Teaspoon of Wine Tannin
* 5 Campden Tablets
* Water To Total Batch to 5 Gallons
* 1 Pkg. Lalvin EC-1118 Yeast

Chevette Girl
05-09-2012, 11:55 AM
Well, you've got a good start for this if you're going to make it sparkling. It's not too potent so it'll ferment nice and quick, should clear relatively quickly, the yeast won't be maxed out, and the yeast you used is great for this application, being a champagne yeast.

You're correct in not using stabilizers before bottling.

I usually use 1 cup of honey per 5 gallon batch and bottle in beer bottles, bt you sound like you're good to go. I like to let it clear and then rack it to another carboy, add the priming honey, and bottle. And mixing it with boiling water or with some of your mead before you add it to the carboy will definitely make it a lot easier to mix in (voice of experience!;D)

The only thing is, I hope you like your meads dry, as getting a sweet sparking mead is a bit of a trick, you either have to get creative with adding stabilizers and sweetening after it's carb'd (possible by bringing everything to near-freezing temperatures) or use a sweetener that's nonfermentable.

wader
05-09-2012, 12:07 PM
Hey thanks for the reassurance!

I'm also wondering if it'd be ok to use clearing agents to speed up clearing. And if so, what would you recommend?

The only other meads I've made is Joe's Ancient which is a little sweet for my taste. So if this one turns out dry, that'd be fine with me.

Chevette Girl
05-09-2012, 12:39 PM
There should still be a few yeast cells left in suspension even if you use a clearing agent, but give it a few weeks first, you may not need it. I often find anything I make that's under 1.090 clears up really quickly.

I usually try bentonite first and then Sparkolloid, but my reasoning behind these selections is because that's what my local brew supply place carries, and I try bentonite first because it doesn't require heating whereas Sparkolloid does, and I'm lazy. :)

Nathan K
05-09-2012, 02:44 PM
Bentonite (negatively charged fining agent) is a good first clarifier to try first and Sparkolloid or gelatin (positively charged fining agents) are a good second. Keep in mind that any clarifier may strip out most of your remaining viable yeast so if you are going that route you may want to add a little more rehydrated yeast at bottling time. Just waiting it out can also do wonders. It's possible that you also have a pectin haze from the apple juice unless the juice was very clear at the start.

hepcat
05-09-2012, 11:16 PM
Best of luck with your sparkling cyser, wader.

I just discovered tonight some I made 66 days ago and primed/bottled 19 days ago is carbontated. I can see sediment and bubbles when I hold the bottles up to the light. I might try some of it this weekend. And this is my first batch of sparkling mead as well.
Cheers.

fivecats
05-10-2012, 01:10 PM
Bentonite (negatively charged fining agent) is a good first clarifier to try first and Sparkolloid or gelatin (positively charged fining agents) are a good second.

The notion of negatively-charged fining agents and positively-charged fining agents bewilders me. Is there any way of telling which should be used first in specific situations? (Does one work better with certain fruits, say? Or does the other work better with spices?)

Chevette Girl
05-10-2012, 01:42 PM
The notion of negatively-charged fining agents and positively-charged fining agents bewilders me. Is there any way of telling which should be used first in specific situations? (Does one work better with certain fruits, say? Or does the other work better with spices?)

Think of it like each particle being magnetized one way or the other, positive attracts negative but likes repel each other, the fining agents make things stick together.

I don't know of any guideline either, although if anyone else does, I'd take notes! I just try the easiest one, if that doesn't do the trick, I try the other... There are some products that work on both at the same time but I save those for really stubborn batches.

Medsen Fey
05-13-2012, 12:23 AM
In a traditional, most of particulate matter will be either proteins or yeast cells both of which tend to be positively charged. This is why I usually start with Bentonite.

With fruits that produce a lot of tannins, the particles will tend to be negatively charged.

However, there is enough overlap that the only way to be certain what will work is to do bench trials which is what commercial wineries do.



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