PDA

View Full Version : Traditional stuck at 1.016



VCTFernandes
04-18-2013, 06:43 PM
Hello friends,
On March 26 I started a traditional which recipe was:

Honey + water in order to have 10gal with OG = 1.110
Around 300g of raisins
10g of nutrients and 10g of energizer at pitch, same dose in the following day (I lost the 1/3 break, so didn't add any other nutrient)
1 packet of 71b (rehydrated)

Well, I kept it open until it was around 1.050 and then airlocked it. Did my best to aerate it, but its hard to shake a big and heavy 10gal carboy...
It started very well and was going down fast. When it reached 1.030, things got REALLY slow and have been so far (15 days from now), only going to 1.016.
I see it is fermenting, as I can see small bubbles rising and CO2 forming daily (There is foaming everyday when I degass it).
I understand that 71b has a tolerance of around 14% and a drop of 94 points gives us only 12.5%...
I believe it may be a pH issue so I've ordered a pH meter, but it will be a while until it arrives, so what should I do until then? Can I blindly add Calcium Carbonate (potassium carbonate is really hard to come by in Brazil) without the risk of off-tastes? Should I just STFU and have some goddamn patience?
I believe its too late for any nutrient addition, right?
Is repitching something you would do if this was your mead?

Thanks!

randomguy18840
04-18-2013, 07:08 PM
If it was my mead I'd cold crash, rack, sulfite, sorbate, and wait for it to fully clear, then rack again and age for 6 months+. But I like some sweetness left. How much farther are you trying to get this to drop? Much lower and it is going to start getting dry. Or just wait another week or so, sometimes yeasties can slow down when they start getting lower on food. You could try carefully stirring to get any yeast sitting on the bottom floating again (just don't splash when you are stirring, Oxygen is bad this late in fermentation).

Medsen Fey
04-18-2013, 09:03 PM
What temperature are you keeping?

VCTFernandes
04-18-2013, 09:36 PM
Actually, I was expecting to let it go dry and backsweeten, but I believe 12% is quite a decent abv, so I might just let it at that.
One thing I noticed while measuring the gravity is that the alcoholic content apparently increased significantly despite the almost stuck gravity... Is it possible that there is sugar coming from the raisins therefore maintaining the gravity stuck while fermentation keeps happening, or is it just my tongue fooling around with me?

The temperature is no less than 68 degrees... More like in the mid seventies...

Chevette Girl
04-28-2013, 12:29 PM
Trust your hydrometer over your tongue :) Sometimes a struggling ferment can make fusel alcohols that taste a good deal harsher than plain old ethanol and may make it seem more alcoholic even when it's not...

If you were to add a small amount (1-2 tsp) of calcium carbonate to your must it would probably not affect the taste but if you DO have a pH problem it might help it finish.

Also, adding some microwaved or boiled bread yeast might get things moving again, that's about the only additive you'd want to consider after the halfway point... and a good stir with a long-handled spoon would not hurt either.

I speak from experience when I suggest that whatever you decide to do with this, stabilize it if there's ANY sugar left when you want to bottle it, unless you've let it sit for a year with no change in SG... my very first traditional mead stopped at 1.015 (or so I thought), so I bottled it unstabilized at six months and then at eight months I had to call all the people I'd given it to for Xmas and tell them to refrigerate it right away, open it carefully, and drink it sooner rather than later.