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Jezter
10-01-2013, 02:52 AM
I've been thinking about this lately and I can see three ways of doing it.

1. Calculate s.g, f.g %alc and select a yeast that will perish leaving a certain amount of sugar behind. This seems to me to be the least accurate way as all the charts show a survivable range for all the yeasts.

2. LIke lots of wine makers I think they test the s.g daily and then kill it when the F.G is where the want it?

3. Backsweeten to a preferred F.G after killing the yeasts of course.

My Current batch is so dry(.99) I"m thinking of backsweetening it and I'm about to start a new batch thus why I've been thinking about how to acheive the desired f.g

Jezter

anir dendroica
10-01-2013, 10:20 AM
#3 is probably the easiest method.

To achieve #2, you need to be able to cold crash as that is about the only way to stop an active fermentation. And you will still need to stabilize so that the yeast don't wake up again. I'm going to try it with a batch later this fall.

#1 is less reliable though it is my preferred method. If a range of FGs is acceptable to you (say, 1.005 to 1.020), then it is not too hard to choose a yeast and a SG such that it will finish in that range 90% of the time.

joemirando
10-01-2013, 11:22 AM
I've been thinking about this lately and I can see three ways of doing it.

1. Calculate s.g, f.g %alc and select a yeast that will perish leaving a certain amount of sugar behind. This seems to me to be the least accurate way as all the charts show a survivable range for all the yeasts.

This is unreliable, since yeast don't read the charts. Also, those numbers are based on grape must. I don't know what the difference between ABV in grape must and ABV in honey must is, but either way, it's unreliable. If you want a finished product with "somewhere around 14% ABV, and you've used a yeast that's "good" to 14%, then sure, you can load up on the honey and let the little buggers choke themselves out and hope that its somewhere around 14%. But you should still stabilize after all is said and done anyway.


2. Like lots of wine makers I think they test the s.g daily and then kill it when the F.G is where they want it.

I have done this too, and was quite happy with the result. I decided that 12% ABV with x residual sugar would be fine with me, so I cold crashed it (its quite difficult to stop a full-fledged, rip-roaring fermentation dead in its tracks without it), racked it onto the stabilizing chemicals and let it sit to clarify. I was really happy with the result.


3. Backsweeten to a preferred F.G after killing the yeasts of course.

The key here, as I'm sure you know, is to figure out how much honey to use for the ABV you want, then letting it ferment dry. This takes a little longer, since, as there's less and less sugar available, the yeast slows down too. But you can usually hit your target ABV dead-on, you have 'complete' control over the sweetness, since you can backsweeten-to-taste.


My Current batch is so dry(.99) I'm thinking of backsweetening it and I'm about to start a new batch thus why I've been thinking about how to acheive the desired f.g

Each of the three options you've outlined have their place, depending on the situation. For your current batch, just stabilize, wait a couple of days, then add honey to a glass of it bit by bit until you've got the taste you want, check the SG and doctor the rest of the batch up accordingly.

Ain't mead making the best fun ever? ;)


Good luck,

Joe

Jezter
10-01-2013, 02:46 PM
Thanks guys I appreciate the expert advice, this forum truly is a great place for mead making.

Yes Joe it is fun, I sit down in the evenings watching t.v and I read and I plan what I'm going to do with it hehe.

joemirando
10-01-2013, 03:27 PM
Thanks guys I appreciate the expert advice, this forum truly is a great place for mead making.

Yes Joe it is fun, I sit down in the evenings watching t.v and I read and I plan what I'm going to do with it hehe.

Well, I am no expert. Not by any stretch. I've made a few batches and have tried to pay attention to what worked and what didn't. ALL the rest I've gotten right here. These people are the best resource there is.

Good luck,

Joe

Medsen Fey
10-01-2013, 09:56 PM
1. Calculate s.g, f.g %alc and select a yeast that will perish leaving a certain amount of sugar behind. This seems to me to be the least accurate way as all the charts show a survivable range for all the yeasts.

2. LIke lots of wine makers I think they test the s.g daily and then kill it when the F.G is where the want it?

3. Backsweeten to a preferred F.G after killing the yeasts of course.



4. Step Feed. Start with a gravity near the ABV tolerance level of the yeast, and let it ferment dry. Then keep adding small doses of honey and letting them go dry until the yeast choke on it and leave it sweet. Unfortunately this approach sometimes causes the yeast to push past their usual alcohol tolerance leaving your batch on the "hot" side.




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