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View Full Version : First batch done, now tech questions



Cambion7
01-16-2013, 02:41 PM
Hi all,

NewBee myself, I dove in and made a 3 gallon batch of mead using 9# of Tupelo honey and spring water to bring it up to the 3 gallon mark. I added potassium carbonate in the primary to help with the PH and DV10 was my yeast. This sped up the fermentation to just a couple of weeks or so.

OG was 1.106 and it finished off around 1.006. So I know it's dry. Last rake was around Christmas and now it's aging. Come June I'll give it a try.

I'm going to shoot for a Raspberry Melomel. Rather than copy a recipe, I want to go it on my own, kind of. I'm thinking of aiming the recipe for a low end medium, since the raspberries I think would impart sweetness of their own. You gotta play around with recipes just to see. That's what is fun about this hobby I think.

I went through the Newbee guides and understand based on a few different sites:

1# of honey in 5 Gal Must will give 1% ABV. Or approx 3oz in 1 Gal to 1% (3.2oz if you do the math). And that the finished product will end dry if you use yeast with the expected ABV tolerance and fermentation goes as planned.

This will be a 5gal batch and I'm aiming for 12% ABV. I'll use either wildflower or clover honey. I take it then that I'll have to add:

12# to end dry
Add additional 1.4# to try to reach FG of 1.010 based on Appendix 6.

But that's where I'm at right now. Still reading Ken's book. There's debate about adding fruit to the primary vs secondary.

Kind Regards,
Scott

Vance G
01-16-2013, 07:28 PM
Another factor is the moisture level of the honey. My honey is produced in basically a high desert and is pretty saturated sugars. I find it is much more accurate when shooting for an Alcohol level to use a hydrometer and go by Original Specific gravity. I figured this out after my first batch was rocket fuel and at 18 months is still needing more time. The next batch with a less alcohol tolerant yeast turned out too sweet for my taste but was drinkable in six months and is gone, except for three hoarded bottles.

Cambion7
01-20-2013, 11:35 PM
Another factor is the moisture level of the honey. My honey is produced in basically a high desert and is pretty saturated sugars. I find it is much more accurate when shooting for an Alcohol level to use a hydrometer and go by Original Specific gravity. I figured this out after my first batch was rocket fuel and at 18 months is still needing more time. The next batch with a less alcohol tolerant yeast turned out too sweet for my taste but was drinkable in six months and is gone, except for three hoarded bottles.

Makes sense. I have a hydrometer, and used it on both batches I've made so far to get OG and FG. I think I read somewhere that the SG will drop about .1 from the OG and that's been true for these first two batches. Those were both 3# of honey per gallon, and fermented with DV10.

I didn't want to chance basing my FG estimate on the OG. I've still got some reading in Mr. Schramm's book, but I'm really anxious to get this melomel going.

Marshmallow Blue
01-21-2013, 03:44 PM
I don't see an issue with adding berries to both. I made a strawberry raspberry mead, and boiled the fruit for the primary. Its closing in on 3 months now and the aroma is gone, smells like a traditional mead. But there flavor is definitely noticeable without dominating. You could always add fruit to the primary to get one characteristic, then rack it off those berries into another to add more flavor. It's a little extra work for cap management and an extra rack or two but it could help you get what you want. If you do boil your fruit you might have issues clearing your mead if that's a concern to you. You can always use a clearing agent to help, but it might not yield optimal results.

FYI: I used 1.5# strawberries and 1# raspberries for a 1 gallon batch.

bigdan110
01-21-2013, 04:04 PM
i made one that is all but gone now i used 2lbs in both primery n secondary and am happy with the resaults, given i messed it up by using ec118 when i wanted to carb it .... ending up with 18% odd flat mead cus the yeast gave out was not what i planned for but it is very good bit like cassis but rasberry not bad for 3 months old

Cambion7
01-22-2013, 04:34 PM
Thanks for the helpful tips everyone! Much appreciated.