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Gypsychick1975
07-10-2013, 07:53 PM
How long does the secondary have to ferment? And once I add to my secondary do I have to siphon again to bottle my brew or should it be clear enough to just bottle?

akueck
07-10-2013, 08:31 PM
The "fermentation" part of secondary fermentation is a terrible misnomer. Fermentation should be done before you rack your mead/beer/etc. The secondary container is an aging vessel. You want to let the yeast drop out, flavors to mature, and all that good stuff.

You may want to rack it again, depending on how much drops out and how long you want to leave it there. Typically you don't want the mead sitting on a lot of sediment. It's also easier to get clear mead in bottles if you are starting from a carboy with very little lees in it.

ScotRob
07-11-2013, 09:39 AM
i would agree with akueck here...you really oughtn't rack until fermentation is complete, or else you may find yourself with a stuck fermentation...the possible exception here might be if you used raw honey and have a VERY deep layer of sediment (wax, pollen, etc), in which case you could rack a bit before fermentation ceases.

I think a lot of people on here confuse mead fermentation with wine fermentation....when making wine (particularly reds) a secondary (malo-lactic) fermentation is desirable or even necessary to produce a good end product, reducing the levels of harsh malic acid and replacing with softer less-harsh lactic acid. Such a secondary fermentation is not required when making mead, since mead will not typically contain enough malic acid to benefit from it.