View Full Version : New To Mead.

02-11-2013, 01:48 AM
For past week or so I've been reading up an watching videos on crafting mead. I've taken the next step today I started purchasing carboys airlock honey yeast yeast nutrients an yeast enigizer... I've decided I would like a sweeter mead over a dry mead. I bought #3 choke cherry honey.(pretty sure it's local lots of cherry in the mts). I'm going to follow sum simple instructions I've put together. Nothing fancy just mixing the honey in the water an pitching yeast.

Ok here's the recipe (open for changes)

The Cherry Poppin Mead

1 gallon spring water
3lbs choke cherry honey
LD CARLSON Yeast nutrient an yeast energized.
24 raisin like cherrys (seen others use raisins in there mead)

Ok so here are my questions..

I'm curious about the nutrient an energizer.. I'm guessing that the raisins people use are used as the nutrient for the YEAST should I not use the nutrient or energizer or should use them as well as the cherry raisins ??

Pls chime in I'd love sum tips on this I ultimately wanted to rack onto cherrys to increase the flavor but at the moment I'm waiting on them to be in stock at the store. ( I mean rack to cherry by siphoning from first fermenter to second carboy with whole cherries) I'd love sum help on this I'm bran spanking new to crafting. I've had enough of watching delicious crafts on tv an I'm ready to make my own.

I'll keep this up to date an post pics this week when I create it.

02-11-2013, 02:01 AM
My second batch was a strawberry melomel. I put the berries in the primary, to get a deeper, more subtle flavor from the fermentation process. I love strawberries, so I also put some in the secondary, to get the bolder berry flavor. Some people prefer fermenting in the primary, some in the secondary. You'll have to do all three (first, second, and both) to know what you like. I've seen some people make one large batch (5 gallons traditional), then rack it into multiple secondaries, each with a different fruit/spice.

When I added the berries to my secondary, I had not stabilized and so had some extra fermentation, but the color and smell were much better, closer to what I wanted.

The raisins are used in many recipes as nutrient, such as Joe's Ancient Orange. Actual nutrients are, I believe, more efficient and easier to get just the right amount you need (different yeasts need different amounts. My melomel began to smell like sulfur, a sign of stressed yeast, so I added more nutrients.) Some say that the raisins can add a different flavor to meads, too.

What does the choke cherry honey taste like?

Marshmallow Blue
02-11-2013, 08:25 AM
Welcome to got mead?.

Well you want the nutrients for when the fermentation is going strong. So I would use the nutrient in the beginning if you plan on racking onto the cherry raisins in the secondary as the fermentation should be just about done by the time you rack.

02-12-2013, 02:03 AM
The choke cherry honey is definitely tasty. It has a more tart pallet then sweet but u know it's a cherry.

The cherry raisins are store bought.

As far as flavoring it I might hunt sum cherrys down or use raisin in both primary an secondary because I would like to come away with more flavor hopefully in end.

I've got so many ideas all ready because during the right season I can get so many!! Variations of choke cherry.. syrup,cider,jelly,tea an OF course honey.

02-12-2013, 02:15 AM
Here's another question I'm using LAVIN 47

Running 1 gallon,

Should I use entire yeast pack I believe it's 5g.. it's small package.?

I also read somewhere to use have a tsp of nutirent?

I'll make a starter (New To terminology sorry) warm water an yeast..an throw nutrient In with the water an honey..

Should I use a enegizer right away,another half tsp to the water honey an nutrient.. or hold off until I need it when fermenting has slowed or stopped??

Ok so I have a couple questions but I'd like to get this right so I'll question everything lol. Thanks

02-12-2013, 04:30 AM
I used D47 for my strawberry melomel; I didn't use enough nutrients in the beginning and it started throwing off sulfur smells - signs of stressed yeast. I think, from my readings, that you can do it different ways - many just dry pitched yeast for years before doing it the "right" way. I don't think you'd ruin anything, you may just have a struggle starting it (long lag time). I'm sure one of the pros can correct/corroborate what I have to say:

Adding the yeast to warm water is rehydrating it (as per instructions on most packets of yeast), and is appropriate for most batches. You would make a starter for a more difficult batch, ie one with a high starting gravity (all that sugar makes it hard for the yeast to grow.) Starters begin with rehydrating the yeast, then, instead of pitching it, add an equal amount of your must. You wait a couple hours (I've seen up to 12), then, when there are bubbles and signs the yeast is living, you add more of the must. Over time you build a strong batch of yeast that can thrive better in harsher conditions.

Yeah, use the whole packet. I think 5 gallons and above you might double it. It just means that you have that many more yeast cells to get your growth on.

Add nutrients after the lag phase - the time from pitching the yeast to when you see signs of fermenting. A lot of people split their planned amount of nutrients into two or three feedings - 1 after lag, then the next two doses the next two days, given after degassing and aeration. I believe that you don't want to add any more nutrients after the 1/3 sugar break - when your yeast has used up 1/3 of the available sugar. This means that the yeast are no longer multiplying, they are now converting sugar to alcohol so they don't need the nutrients.Use the mad calculator to figure out how much of a drop you'll get in your SG; going from 1.110 to 1.000 means a drop of .110, so 1/3 of that would be .036, so when your hydrometer reads 1.074, you'll want to stop feeding and aerating (just swirl to degass from that point on.)

Seems like there is a lot of discussion on the exact amount of nutrients needed - some say one amount, some another. I didn't measure out mine, exactly, just started adding more when I smelled the sulfur. That is when I learned about stressed yeast and feeding.

I'm sure someone will correct me if I got any of that wrong.

A Stephenson
02-12-2013, 08:44 AM
Hi all,

I have been brewing with Lalvin D47 and EC-1118, both very good. The EC-1118 I used for a batch of Banana Wine which turned out to be excellent and reached 20%.

The mead I am making is Medium Show Mead recipe below;

5 gal (18.93 lit)
14 lbs honey
5-10g Lalvin D47
TronOzymol yeast nutrient and Energiser at 8.5 tsp (2 tsp/ 4.5 lit)
15.15 lit spring water

Fermentation temp will be at the higher limit of 18-20c, and length of fermentation 2-3 weeks.

If using 5g of yeast should make a 1 lit starter but thinking that 10g should be enough to tackle a high sugar content.

Ken Schramm's book recommends the 1 lit starter. He has posted on Lalvin's website regarding gradual addition of nutrients and energiser over the first third of the fermentation period, 1 week in case of 3 and 4 days if 2 week ferment is expected.
Their reply recommended gradual additions of energiser and nutrient, mainly nitrogen will give a gradual fermentation with yeast having higher levels of protein and a stronger cell structure which will withstand higher levels of alcohol and help in ensuring a complete fermentation to 14% for D47. This will also help prevent the yeast becoming stressed.

This is the website address: http://www.lalvinyeast.com/library.asp

Any suggestions or ideas?


Medsen Fey
02-12-2013, 09:53 AM
I'm curious about the nutrient an energizer.. I'm guessing that the raisins people use are used as the nutrient for the YEAST should I not use the nutrient or energizer or should use them as well as the cherry raisins ??


If you are planning to ferment this as a traditional mead and then rack onto the fruit, you'll want to use nutrients. For a 1-gallon batch, if you use something like Fermaid K (tan-colored powder), adding around 8 grams (about 2 tsp) that should be plenty. Adding 1/2 of the total amount at the first sign of bubbling, and add the rest when the fermentation is 1/3 complete.

If you start with 3 pounds of honey, D47 will probably take it dry, but you can add more in secondary if you want it sweet.

You'll be happier if you keep the fermentation temp below 70 F.

Chevette Girl
02-14-2013, 12:43 AM
I'll make a starter (New To terminology sorry) warm water an yeast..an throw nutrient In with the water an honey..

Should I use a enegizer right away,another half tsp to the water honey an nutrient.. or hold off until I need it when fermenting has slowed or stopped??

If you follow the directions on the package and rehydrate the yeast in the measured amount of water at the correct temperature for the specified length of time, it's called rehydrating. If you then add honey or juice before adding the yeast to your batch of mead, then it's called a starter. Unless you're making your yeast do something they don't expect, usually just rehydration is enough with the Lalvin yeasts.

I usually add half my energizer before I pitch and the rest of it gets added gradually at aerations after lag phase.

02-19-2013, 01:37 PM
Sorry yall ive had family in town recently an didn't get the chance to craft the mead. Hopefully I get the chance before the week is over. Ill get sum pics up of the process an the ingredients

02-19-2013, 06:02 PM
Hope it goes well brewbee, its best to wait and make sure you give yourself enough time to do it properly.

Just a quick word to A Stephenson, good questions but the best way of getting answers to questions like yours is to start a new topic rather than post them in someone else's thread.
Be very careful with temp when using D47.