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Eytan
12-22-2012, 05:31 PM
Hi guys.

I bottled two batches of mead a few days ago ( had been clear for a few weeks with no bubbles when flashlight testing) and just transported 3 bottles by car to my girlfriends house. They may have been slightly shaken by the car journey but now when looking at them each bottle has 3 or 4 small bubbles in the neck. One bottle fell over and I noticed about 10 tiny bubbles rising through the mead. I'm meant to be giving one of the bottles away as an Xmas present in a few days but now am worried that I may be giving away mead grenades :/ I degassed both batches as much as I thought necessary before bottling and am really worried. Is there a normal/ acceptable amount of bubbling when the mead is disturbed??? A quick answer would be of great help!

skunkboy
12-22-2012, 05:35 PM
Did you open any of the bottles you transported and did they fizz at all?

Eytan
12-22-2012, 05:42 PM
I haven't opened any, but transported one to a friends house last night, a couple of bubbles appeared in that too but no fizz when opened. No discernible taste of carbonation either.... I understand that it's practically impossible to get all carbonation out and provided it won't explode before Xmas day it should be fine as I expect that all 3 bottles will be finished then! What do you think?

Eytan
12-22-2012, 05:51 PM
Ps on further inspection, one batch has some kind of flocculation in it (I think it's probably protein) I know that normally some further settling in the bottle is fine, but thought I would mention it in case the two were somehow related!

Golddiggie
12-22-2012, 09:31 PM
How long was it from mixing/pitching yeast to bottling and what ABV%?

The "had been clear for a few weeks with no bubbles when flashlight testing" is meaningless since you could have bottled far too soon for more than a few reasons. Even a low ABV (under 14%) will benefit from more time bulk aging. If you started this in October of this year, it's not ready, IMO/IME. I bottled some of my first mead batches far too soon (was pushed into it due to weather and not having a good area to store it). Luckily, one batch was aged a full year. That one has aged even better in the year since then. So at 2 years old I'm wishing I had MORE of it left.

fatbloke
12-23-2012, 02:04 AM
If its already in the bottle you could just get a vacuvin, uncork and apply the stopper and device - pump it and you'll see in seconds whether its got any dissolved CO2 in it or not.

Eytan
12-23-2012, 05:27 AM
Golddiggie, could you please clarify? Are you saying "it's too soon" as in 'explosions are likely' or just that ideally it should be longer for taste/aging?? I'm only particularly worried about explosions at this time...

Fatbloke: as I am down on the coast now and not at home I don't have access to recorking or vacuum equipment :/ will it last two days without exploding?

Eytan
12-23-2012, 05:52 AM
Ps. Moved the bottles to the coldest place in the house last night. Just checked and flocculation has ceased. Also all but one or two if the bubbles has disappeared and no new ones formed. Corks remain unmoved... I've wrapped each bottle in cardboard and many layers of plastic bags just in case!

fatbloke
12-23-2012, 06:10 AM
Golddiggie, could you please clarify? Are you saying "it's too soon" as in 'explosions are likely' or just that ideally it should be longer for taste/aging?? I'm only particularly worried about explosions at this time...

Fatbloke: as I am down on the coast now and not at home I don't have access to recorking or vacuum equipment :/ will it last two days without exploding?
Any home brew shop would likely stock a vacuvin and probably plastic stoppers too, hence you could just remove the cork degas with vacuvin and the plastic stoppers will push in by hand (or heel of shoe) and seal fine.

if all else fails, just get them in the fridge, because the only real danger is refermentation, which ain't gonna happen if you get the bottles into standard domestic fridge temps of 1 to 4C

Which bit of coast are you on ?

Eytan
12-23-2012, 06:41 AM
Any home brew shop would likely stock a vacuvin and probably plastic stoppers too, hence you could just remove the cork degas with vacuvin and the plastic stoppers will push in by hand (or heel of shoe) and seal fine.

if all else fails, just get them in the fridge, because the only real danger is refermentation, which ain't gonna happen if you get the bottles into standard domestic fridge temps of 1 to 4C

Which bit of coast are you on ?

Thanks man, as I said in storing them outside and I don't think re-fermentstion is occurring. Just a little bit of trapped co2. Provided it stays cold out then I guess it's nothing to worry about really... At least not for the next 48 hours!

I'm down in Eastbourne :)

fatbloke
12-23-2012, 06:51 AM
Ah well, a bit too far east to just pop along and use my va uvin and recork....

Just keep 'em in the fridge..... and then treat them like a red i.e. uncork and allow to come to room temp....

Golddiggie
12-23-2012, 12:35 PM
Golddiggie, could you please clarify? Are you saying "it's too soon" as in 'explosions are likely' or just that ideally it should be longer for taste/aging?? I'm only particularly worried about explosions at this time...

Fatbloke: as I am down on the coast now and not at home I don't have access to recorking or vacuum equipment :/ will it last two days without exploding?

I'm saying that if you bottled up a mead after just a few months after starting it, you did so too soon. Doesn't matter if fermentation was finished by then. Without knowing WHAT you made, it's difficult to say, but I won't bottle anything, even a low strength (14% or lower) mead until a year from pitching the yeast in. It needs time to both age and to get things to settle out (flocculate) from it. No matter how clear you think it is now, give it another couple of months and check the bottoms of the bottles. As it ages in bottles, you'll find more and more is settling out to the bottom.

Eytan
12-27-2012, 08:54 AM
Hi guys,

Just thought id let you know as to the outcome.

All 3 bottles were absolutely fine and seemed to taste notably better than just a few days ago when bottled! In one batch there was a tiny bit of sediment in the bottle but this caused absolutely no problem as I simply decanted for a few hours before drinking.

Fatbloke; Thanks for your advice and help. It is very much appreciated!

Golddiggie; thanks for your comments, but they didnt actually answer my question. I accept that you dont like to bottle that early, but Im not sure how this is relevant to the question I asked in the first place.

Peace and mead :)

Golddiggie
12-27-2012, 12:17 PM
Hi guys,

Just thought id let you know as to the outcome.

All 3 bottles were absolutely fine and seemed to taste notably better than just a few days ago when bottled! In one batch there was a tiny bit of sediment in the bottle but this caused absolutely no problem as I simply decanted for a few hours before drinking.

Fatbloke; Thanks for your advice and help. It is very much appreciated!

Golddiggie; thanks for your comments, but they didnt actually answer my question. I accept that you dont like to bottle that early, but Im not sure how this is relevant to the question I asked in the first place.

Peace and mead :)

Bottling too soon WILL cause all kinds of issues. The fact that you don't see anything wrong with doing this makes me wonder just how good the mead really is. I'm sure it's better than most of the commercial stuff you see, but a great many of us on this site make mead several times better than that. Mead will age over time, becoming far better than it was when young. JUST as a good wine will do.

I feel bad for the bees that you took the honey from.

Medsen Fey
12-27-2012, 01:17 PM
Gee Diggie, you sound grumpy - did Santa leave you a lump of coal? ;)

It is true that bottling too soon can lead to a number of problems. If the yeast haven't quite finished, you run the risk of bottle bombs. Even if they have finished, by bottling too early you get a lot of yeast in the bottle that can lead to sulfur odors or "off flavors" so it really is a good idea to wait.

Golddiggie
12-27-2012, 01:26 PM
Gee Diggie, you sound grumpy - did Santa leave you a lump of coal? ;)

It is true that bottling too soon can lead to a number of problems. If the yeast haven't quite finished, you run the risk of bottle bombs. Even if they have finished, by bottling too early you get a lot of yeast in the bottle that can lead to sulfur odors or "off flavors" so it really is a good idea to wait.

You should have seen that that old fat bastard tried to give me... :eek: Old St. Nick is really twisted and sick. :eek: ;D

Chevette Girl
12-31-2012, 12:35 AM
Eytan, posting your exact recipe, complete with dates would have helped a lot with this discussion (that's why it suggests it up there in this forum's description) :)

Usually a couple days shouldn't be too bad, my first explosive mead that I bottled too early took about a month in the bottle (I'd already drunk a few bottles), maybe two, to start getting exciting.

And I tried my vacuvin pump on a batch I bottled too early and it took a couple of weeks of pumping it out repeatedly and leaving it under vacuum to finally degas them. I think it would've been easier to just pour 'em all back in the carboy!

So now that you've given these and expected them to be gone, how were they received? Well, I hope? :)