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JohnThomas
08-08-2013, 12:05 PM
Hi Everyone. I am as new to home brewing as one can get. This first batch of mead is my first attempt at home brewing as well as my first attempt at mead. I've read through the newbee guide and just wanted to post what I've been doing to get some feedback from those who are more experienced.

Up until now, I've been working under the advisement of my local home brew retailer.

RECIPE:
5 gallons filtered water
12 pounds wild flower honey (unprocessed, amber color)
30 grams Liquor Quik brand Whisky Pure Yeast

PROCESS:
Warmed the water to 120F and added the honey. Stirred for 5 minutes then transferred to fermenting pale. Let that cool down to 72F and pitched the yeast. I let the yeast sit on top of the must for 15 minutes then poured back and forth between two pales to mix and aerate. Last, I covered the pale and installed an airlock. It's been sitting in my kitchen for 3 1/2 days at the time of this post. Air temp in my home is 70F - 72F. The airlock pops about once every 50 seconds. It's a 3 piece airlock, not a bubbler.

Anyone have any input? I never took gravity measurements. I'm wondering how I will know when fermenting is complete.

fatbloke
08-08-2013, 12:41 PM
Welcome to the forums.....

1 word....nutrients.

Either proprietary ones like Fermaidk or fermax.....

Or a good handful ot raisins, some boiled or microwaved bread yeast, etc.

To monitor the ferment, a hydrometer is a must.

Honey can be rather weird so it helps no end, to know how its doing...

JohnThomas
08-08-2013, 12:44 PM
Welcome to the forums.....

1 word....nutrients.

Either proprietary ones like Fermaidk or fermax.....

Or a good handful ot raisins, some boiled or microwaved bread yeast, etc.

Thank you - I was worried someone was going to say that. Is it too late to add nutrients? It's ok to uncover the fermenting pale after 3 or 4 days?

fatbloke
08-08-2013, 02:20 PM
Thank you - I was worried someone was going to say that. Is it too late to add nutrients? It's ok to uncover the fermenting pale after 3 or 4 days?
Its mead, not beer...... as ever while it's feasible that you can get oxidised or infections etc etc, I'm not mega anal about hygiene matter, I just take sensible precautions.

How many problems have I had in 8 or 9 years of making ?......

None.

If you open the bucket, its still blanketed in CO2. Heavier than air so unless you give it a good stir or its in a good draught, then its fine.

Obviously you make sure a hydrometer should be washed and rinsed and then sanitised with something (I use 5 crushed campden tablets and a teaspoon of citric acid, dissolved in a pint of water in a hand spray)......

With nutrients, if its like proprietary stuff that has inorganic nitrogen, then its regularly added in the first 1/3rd of the ferment (another reason to have a hydrometer). After the 1/3rd break, nutrients would need to be organic like FermaidO (as different from K) or boiled bread yeast or yeast hulls etc etc....

JohnThomas
08-08-2013, 04:45 PM
Thanks for the tips Fatbloke - I'm going to add Fermaid K this evening.

JohnThomas
08-09-2013, 06:23 PM
After checking with two local home brew stores, I was only able to get two products.

The first is LD Carlson Yeast Nutrient

The second is LD Carlson Yeast Energizer

I was told to add 1tsp nutrient/gallon and 1/2tsp energizer per gallon. It's been 4 1/2 days since I pitched and covered the fermentation pale. I just took a peek inside. There's a ring around the top that I'm guessing is from the krausen and there's visible activity. The bubbler is popping earnestly.

Would it be beneficial to add the LD Carlson products or should I just leave it be? I'm worried it's too late.