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Reeny
07-07-2012, 11:00 PM
Hi everyone
I am new to the forum. I am reading and learning and the Internet has so much information that it can be overwelming to a noobee.

I recently became a beekeeper as a hobby. Went to bee college in march through the University of Florida took a Mead class and loved it. Made wine many years ago.

I have about 4.5 lbs of my own honey it is a very nice amber color. My hives are TBH (top bar hives). They forage in my neighborhood on local fruit tree, flowers etc.

I want to make my first mead. I saw the recipe Joe's ancient mead my concern is the yeast. Been on stormthecastle.com tempted to try his intermediate mead. Was thinking making it with oranges, raisins, a cinnamon stick, and two whole cloves. I have Lalvin D47 yeast. He uses 1/2 tsp of pectin enzyme, 1/2 tsp of acid blend, 1tsp of yeast nutrient, and 1/2 tsp of wine tannin, one campden tablet, pitch yeast after 24 hours.

Any suggestions???

dingurth
07-08-2012, 12:39 AM
One of the biggest aspects of making a JAO is using the bread yeast. If you use anything else, you void the warranty and could come up with anything. I really enjoyed my first JAO. Only suggestion I would have is to age it for two or three weeks after bottling. Right after I bottled mine, it tasted a little hot/sharp. I opened another one a few weeks later and even just that little amount of time did wonders for it. I also like mine chilled, but that's just my preference.

Some people worry about using bread yeast because it's not "professional" (as if any of us are, we are homebrewing after all!), and others look down on it, especially in competitions. Bread yeast is actually a strain of ale yeast, and the reason Joe uses it is because that was the only type of yeast people had way back when. I've only used bread yeast in the eight meads I've made, and have only recently switched to different strains in some of my newer meads. Everything so far has been turning out great for me and I know a lot of other people also stick with bread yeast, so I wouldn't worry about it.

While I had my JAO going, I did start a raspberry and a cyser at the same time. Those won't be done for a few more months though, and I wanted something that was guaranteed to be quick so I could try some. The original JAO recipe is a great way to start and is practically fool proof if you stick to it; no nutrients, no additives, just the way Joe spells it out. :) That would be my suggestion for starting out at least. It worked great for me.

Also, D47 is usually a winter yeast unless you keep you house exceptionally cool. Anything above 68F and it is not very happy.

akueck
07-08-2012, 07:47 AM
I would recommend the JAO to you. Using a "real" wine yeast will give you something that will take longer to age before you can drink it. This is fine, but it's really hard to be patient with that first batch. Start with the JAO and you can then immediately go ahead with the next batch using D47 or whatever other yeast. You'll be thankful to have some JAO to distract you while that second batch ages.

Reeny
07-09-2012, 10:23 PM
Quick question I decided to make the JOAM exactly how much is 3.5 lbs of honey. I am trying to figure it out I know 3 lbs is a qt. Which is 4 cups so is 3.5 lbs about 4 cups plus 6 oz or 38 oz?

dingurth
07-09-2012, 10:43 PM
1cup = 3/4lbs of honey, so 3.5lbs = 4 and 2/3 cups :)

Reeny
07-09-2012, 10:57 PM
Thank you so much. Ready to make my first mead!:)

Reeny
07-10-2012, 12:15 PM
Just made my first mead. So excited! I ended up making JOAM it was very easy now the waiting begins. ;)

kudapucat
07-10-2012, 07:12 PM
Just made my first mead. So excited! I ended up making JOAM it was very easy now the waiting begins. ;)

When you get impatient, bored, and want to fiddle, may I suggest you make another, this reduces the temptation, and if you keep making more, there's much less chance of you noticing the wait, and much more chance of decent bottle aging

Riverat
07-10-2012, 08:02 PM
I second Kudapucat! Your first will likely not last long, keep some in the pipeline!

Reeny
07-11-2012, 09:26 AM
Good morning everyone
Just got up and went out to the kitchen looked at my jug of mead and the airlock was clogged with orange and bubbles. When I took it off I had an explosion to the ceiling. All is well except now I lost a few pieces of orange and some liquid. I didn't think I filled it up too far it was just below the level of the handle but obviously I did.
Should I replace what I lost? Or leave it alone and when it settles down add more water? I did clean out the airlock and resanitize and fill back with vodka.

Need advise ASAP! Wow It smelled and tasted pretty good! ???

Chevette Girl
07-11-2012, 09:57 AM
I'd leave it alone for a bit, till the fermentation dies down. Aside from cleaning out and refitting your airlock.

If you're doing JAO in a jug, you generally don't want the water level above the "shoulders" of the jug until after the fermentation's died down a bit, otherwise , as you've seen, CO2 can lift the fruit right up into the airlock and when it clogs it, the pressure builds up, good thing you got to it or it could have gone pow all by itself with an even higher pressure!

If it keeps fouling your airlock, you can also just use a double layer of plastic wrap and a rubber band for a couple of days, it's tight enough to keep fruit flies out but loose enough that CO2 will escape, and it'll leak before it clogs.

Reeny
07-11-2012, 10:43 AM
Thanks chevette girl I think the level is low enough now. How long does it usually take to settle down day? 2 weeks? Then I should add a little more water?

dingurth
07-11-2012, 11:40 AM
Usually day four or five is when I top it off. I just try to watch it the first few days and add when it seems to have calmed down enough.

Chevette Girl
07-11-2012, 12:01 PM
Yeah, yeast don't usually keep to a schedule, you sort of have to eyeball it. I know Joe says don't touch it, but if you give the carboy a gentle swirl and it fizzes up like heck, it's not ready to be topped up :)

THawk
07-12-2012, 01:43 AM
Yeah, yeast don't usually keep to a schedule

For some reason, this conjures an image of yeast cells lining up to punch their time clock.. and they're all identically dressed with a hard hat and lunch pail... :D

Chevette Girl
07-12-2012, 12:33 PM
For some reason, this conjures an image of yeast cells lining up to punch their time clock.. and they're all identically dressed with a hard hat and lunch pail... :D

Or gathered around the water cooler while on break... :)

Reeny
07-12-2012, 05:19 PM
If any one wants to see my blog I posted all about my mead making!

It can be found here: http://reenysbutterfliesbloomsbees.blogspot.com
It is mostly about my adventures in my back yard. Since my honey came from my hives I included mead makiing in this weeks blog entry.

kudapucat
07-12-2012, 05:42 PM
I've never seen a JAO MEA before!
Fruit Cap management in bottles is a PITA though, I think I've had issues with 80% of my carboy brewed melomels.
Just let it calm down, then replace the airlock and check it regularly, just in case you didn't wait long enough.

Reeny
07-12-2012, 07:11 PM
I've never seen a JAO MEA before!
Fruit Cap management in bottles is a PITA though, I think I've had issues with 80% of my carboy brewed melomels.
Just let it calm down, then replace the airlock and check it regularly, just in case you didn't wait long enough.

Ok what is MEA AND PITA?? I looked up Cap and found the definition.

Riverat
07-12-2012, 07:29 PM
Mead Eruption Accident
Pain In The A**

Chevette Girl
07-12-2012, 07:50 PM
I've never seen a JAO MEA before!


Ooh, ooh, over here... with my first weirdomel (a JAO variant)... it was at least a slow flow and not a violent geyser...

kudapucat
07-12-2012, 08:18 PM
Ok what is MEA AND PITA?? I looked up Cap and found the definition.
Wot RiverRat sed.

MEA is clickable, and therefore in the glossary, as is cap, if it's a link, click on it for a definition ;-)
PITA is general parlance.

If you don't know what an abbreviation or acronym is, type the following into google:

define:PITA

(Replace PITA with your acronym of doubt)
it is usually in the google definitions, but sometimes you have to check urban dictionary, which is generally the first hit after the google definitions.

Not trying to give you a lecture ;-) it's just googles faster than us, even though RiverRat got to you within 18 minutes.

Reeny
07-13-2012, 12:02 AM
Ok duh? PITA I get it!

I haven't totally cleaned everything from the other morning. I did get most of the orange pulp off the celing. Need to clean the window when I clean this weekend.

I never made wine or mead in a gallon carboy before. I have only made mango wine many years ago in a 5 gal carboy.

In the recipe is says one the yeast settles down you can add some water to bring up the level. How high can I actually fill the gallon container??

THawk
07-13-2012, 04:18 AM
I read your blog. Process-wise, a JAOM isn't gonna take 6 months.

The longest I've had mine before the fruit sank was around 2 months... JAOM is drinkable in 2 but gets better as you age it... so your supply probably won't LAST 6 months ;D

Reeny
07-13-2012, 08:47 AM
I read your blog. Process-wise, a JAOM isn't gonna take 6 months.

The longest I've had mine before the fruit sank was around 2 months... JAOM is drinkable in 2 but gets better as you age it... so your supply probably won't LAST 6 months ;D


Well good to know! I read a few post that said it got better with age. Hey I'm ready to drink it tomorrow!

THawk
07-13-2012, 09:21 AM
Well good to know! I read a few post that said it got better with age. Hey I'm ready to drink it tomorrow!

Well it DOES get better with age. You'll be amazed what leaving it alone for 6 months does to it. But the JAOM is designed so that the beginner doesn't need to WAIT 6+ months so if you're fine with a young wine... That being said, though, try, yes, TRY (I know it's hard ;) ) to set some aside to drink by Christmas. You'll be pleasantly rewarded... ;D

Chevette Girl
07-13-2012, 10:45 AM
In the recipe is says one the yeast settles down you can add some water to bring up the level. How high can I actually fill the gallon container??

I usually give it a couple days of quiet time after the fermentaiton's slowed down, but you should be able to fill it up to the neck. I'd suggest adding about half as much water as you think you should on the first day, the rest on the second day just to make sure you don't get more fermentation as you've diluted the alcohol a little (and hence the yeast is no longer at its tolerance. Even if it dies kick up again, it's usually much less violent fermenting than the first couple days.

Reeny
07-13-2012, 11:35 AM
Thanks you guys can't wait. Need more honey from my hives!! Want to make more.