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McJeff
10-05-2013, 09:13 AM
I'm sure someone has done it. From the searching I've seen here it's usually a 50/50 maple syrup/honey. Has any tried doin just maple syrup? I'm goin to do a trial 1g batch just to compare it to my plain honey mead. Any pointers? How is the acid levels in maple syrup?

Chevette Girl
10-05-2013, 10:15 AM
I don't find a large drop in pH in my acerglyns so I am guessing that maple sap is somewhat alkaline rather than acidic. I will confirm next time I get pH strips near maple syrup.

McJeff
10-05-2013, 01:13 PM
Have you done a pure all maple syrup?

Shelley
10-05-2013, 04:15 PM
I did an acerglyn in 2010; syrup, sap, nutrients, yeast. SG: 1.095 to .990 on Montrachet. It lost some of its maple flavor but had a taste all its own. It was pleasant, but not "OMG this is the best thing ever." I did another batch in 2012 with D47; I'll give that a taste-test tonight.

McJeff
10-05-2013, 05:03 PM
Goin to give it a try myself, any pointers or just like a traditional?

Shelley
10-05-2013, 10:21 PM
Goin to give it a try myself, any pointers or just like a traditional?

I did it like a traditional. But my last note after a taste test was that I should have stopped fermentation before I lost the sweetness you associate with maple syrup. I wanted a sweeter wine that I got; maple wine just seems like it should have some sugar to it!

McJeff
10-06-2013, 05:20 AM
Ok Good ty!

fatbloke
10-06-2013, 05:44 AM
I did it like a traditional. But my last note after a taste test was that I should have stopped fermentation before I lost the sweetness you associate with maple syrup. I wanted a sweeter wine that I got; maple wine just seems like it should have some sugar to it!
Which is why a lot of us feel that it's poor technique to try and be so precise with ferments.

It's hard to stop an active ferment, the only way you can read of some success is to cold crash the ferment for a week or so, but you still wouldn't really be that accurate as it would take a day or three to chill the yeast into hibernation, then once it's all cold/chilled/crashed, you rack it off any lees that has settled out onto stabilising chems - not a 100% guaranteed to work but it seems about the best way of accomplishing this.

Equally, it's usually easiest (take that as meaning more controllable), to start lower, ferment dry, then back sweeten. I'd guess you would need some residual sweetness to achieve that "maple syrup" flavour, because just the sap would have a weird, unfamiliar flavour.

So back sweetened to what ? maybe 1.020 or a little more ? If you back sweetened a bit too much, I'd have thought that some acid addition would mask just enough of the sweetness to still retain enough of that wonderful maple syrup sort of taste.

good luck with your batch McJ, maple syrup is too expensive here, to try for anything other than a 1 gallon batch. Even then it would likely have to be used for back sweetening a traditional to retain some of the flavour/sweetness - I'd guess it's cheaper over your side of the pond......

McJeff
10-06-2013, 08:42 AM
I am lucky with where I live in the western mountains of Maine. Honey and maple syrup is relatively cheap and easy to get. If only it was as cheap and easy for some of the people in this area to get dental care and common sense.

fatbloke
10-06-2013, 10:06 AM
I am lucky with where I live in the western mountains of Maine. Honey and maple syrup is relatively cheap and easy to get. If only it was as cheap and easy for some of the people in this area to get dental care and common sense.
Well that's very lucky for you to have access to cheap supplies like that, I'm rather envious of it ;)

But for those later people ? Well, you can't force them to consume less sugars and pay more attention to their dental hygiene can you (I can't see any State or Federal government approving dental visits at gunpoint can you ? ;D).....

McJeff
10-06-2013, 12:49 PM
You can wish

Shelley
10-07-2013, 11:06 AM
Which is why a lot of us feel that it's poor technique to try and be so precise with ferments.

It's hard to stop an active ferment, the only way you can read of some success is to cold crash the ferment for a week or so, but you still wouldn't really be that accurate as it would take a day or three to chill the yeast into hibernation, then once it's all cold/chilled/crashed, you rack it off any lees that has settled out onto stabilising chems - not a 100% guaranteed to work but it seems about the best way of accomplishing this.

Equally, it's usually easiest (take that as meaning more controllable), to start lower, ferment dry, then back sweeten. I'd guess you would need some residual sweetness to achieve that "maple syrup" flavour, because just the sap would have a weird, unfamiliar flavour.

So back sweetened to what ? maybe 1.020 or a little more ? If you back sweetened a bit too much, I'd have thought that some acid addition would mask just enough of the sweetness to still retain enough of that wonderful maple syrup sort of taste.

good luck with your batch McJ, maple syrup is too expensive here, to try for anything other than a 1 gallon batch. Even then it would likely have to be used for back sweetening a traditional to retain some of the flavour/sweetness - I'd guess it's cheaper over your side of the pond......

Yeah, I think the 1.02 was about where I made that note. Mead is usually so obliging for me that I fell into a "everything ferments like honey" mindset. :)

On the plus side, it's still drinkable, and it was a good reminder for me to do my homework before straying outside of the mead world. I started my first red wine from Geneva Red grapes, and this lesson (among others!) helped me plan my ferment out a lot more.

Sorry I haven't gotten back about testing my 2012 bottle; I got home late the past few nights, and haven't been in a position of enjoying a glass in relative calm. I'll try again tonight!

Honeyhog
10-07-2013, 08:46 PM
Just started a one gallon batch of this myself yesterday. I'm doing it like a traditional, maple syrup, water, yeast, yeast nutrients. I brought it up to 1.09 and used K1-v1116. I'll ferment it out to dry, stabilize and backsweeten with syrup to taste

McJeff
10-07-2013, 09:15 PM
Im new to all this, but 1.090 will only be about 12% alcohol. But KV1 is good for 18%.

Shelley
10-07-2013, 11:40 PM
For what it's worth, I finally broke open a bottle (capped beer bottle) of the acerglyn I bottled in July 2012. It's dry verging on semi-dry. The flavor is completely unique to any other wines I've had (most of which are grape wines, meads, and blackberry wine). It's got a very full feeling in my mouth, and I have a feeling it wouldn't take much backsweetening to push it from pleasant to cloying.

I'm not good with pairings - I likes what I likes when I likes it. But I don't think I'd enjoy this with a meal. Food would alter the unique flavor too much.

Honeyhog
10-08-2013, 12:17 AM
I kept the alcohol content low so that it hopefully won't take as long to mature.


It's got a very full feeling in my mouth, and I have a feeling it wouldn't take much backsweetening to push it from pleasant to cloying.
With that in mind maybe I'll leave it dry.

Almatolmen
01-09-2016, 05:23 PM
I've been researching this topic for a while.

For the greatest maple flavor I'd recommend using the a Grade A Very Dark, Strong Flavor, not the Grade A Golden, which is used to make pancake syrup. Connoisseurs prefer the taste of the first grade.

The dark, strong syrup is sometimes compared to molasses, which is fermented then distilled (or not) nto rum, and is often used in baking, as in molasses cookies. Undistilled might be more like a mead. Someone ought to experiment with a maple syrup rum. Molasses fermentation for rum has it's own specialized yeasts.

Just some thoughts.

BTW, all grades of syrup has about 67-69% sugar, if that helps. The ratio of glucose to fructose and sucrose varies some, but not much.

Most experimenters seem to suggest that the longer it ferments the better, a minimum of two years, perhaps as much as five, for technical reasons I don't understand. I'm not a home brewer.

I started this journey to maybe realize the maple mead in Lois Major Bujold's SF novel, A Civil Campaign. She describes it as rough and an acquired taste. Perhaps the Barrayarans don't know of the problems with wild yeasts.

curgoth
01-11-2016, 04:14 PM
The inhabitants of the Dendarii mountains are probably just not bothering to age their maple mead before drinking it. If you let it mellow, some damned Cetagandan would probably swipe it!

Chevette Girl
01-11-2016, 10:59 PM
It's probably harsh because they ferment it dry and don't age it ... and I need to go re-read that series, I'd completely forgotten about that reference :)