View Full Version : Sparkling Mead and when i can bottle

10-25-2012, 03:24 PM
Hi guys, greeting from Brazil.

I started do make mead a few months ago and now I try to use some Red Star yeast. I used the Premier Cuvee.

My target is a sweet to desert mead and I had 1.115 OG.

30 days later my SG drops to 1.000 and I had almost nothing activity in my airlock, so I racked to another carboy.

I have a few questions:

Can I bottle it and let age there?

Im thinking of bottle some with priming to carbonate. I have already 30 days, can I do the priming?

Thanks guys

Chevette Girl
10-25-2012, 03:54 PM
Welcome to the forum!

If it's only been 30 days since you started it, it may still go lower than 1.000 so I wouldn't bottle it until you go several weeks without the SG changing because there may still be some slow activity and it may continue fermenting in the bottle, which is not safe even if you do use champagne or beer bottles because you don't know how much farther it will go, sometimes you can get a finishing gravity below 0.980.

Regarding the bottle priming - I'm not sure what your yeast's alcohol tolerance is but with a starting gravity of 1.115 it wouldn't surprise me if it's at its tolerance now.

I know that sounds contradictory, but you never know exactly how far a yeast will go even when you know its published alcohol tolerance. If you did prime and bottle this now it's possible it would just end up sweet at slightly above 1.000, or it's possible it might keep on going and explode all your bottles by eating your priming sugar as well as whatever sugar is still there from the initial fermentation (a reading of 1.000 does not mean there's no sugar, it just means that the effect of the sugar content (high SG) has been cancelled by the ethanol content (low SG)).

If you want to make a carbonated mead, the best way to do that is starting a batch with a lower SG so that you know for sure that the yeast will still have some ability to continue if you add more sugar once they've eaten all you've given them.

10-25-2012, 04:01 PM
One more thing.

Im asking about to bottle because Im afraid to lose the frame that I can use the remaining live yeast to make priming with more honey

Chevette Girl
10-25-2012, 04:13 PM
I think most of the time you should be good up to about 6 months before priming.

And wine yeast has been known to kick back up into fermentation after 2 years in the bottle, so you really want to know if yours is done or not before you bottle it. The only safe way I can think of would be using plastic pop bottles so that you can tell by squeezing them if they're starting to carbonate and you can loosen the caps and let off pressure or shove them in the refrigerator if they do carbonate.

The risk of exploding bottles is not worth rushing it. If you're concerned about yeast for your next batch, save the lees after racking this batch off, and either start another batch with it or add a little water and a little honey and store it in the refrigerator.

I take it wine yeast is hard to get or very expensive where you are? Because even if you age a wine for a few years before deciding to prime and bottle it, you can always just add more yeast.

10-25-2012, 04:25 PM
Thanks Chevette Girl

The yeast can tolerate about 18 ABV. So, 1.115 SG and 1.000 FG, I have about 16% ABV so far.

I will wait a couple of week and check the gravity. After that, i will wait until 5 or 6 months to bottle.

Here in Brazil it a little hard to find this yeast, but I have some online shop that deliver.

I will follow you advices from now !

Thanks again ;D