PDA

View Full Version : Black Locust Honey



bernardsmith
10-29-2013, 12:00 PM
Got myself a few pounds of black locust honey. Is this a honey that benefits from a drier or a sweeter fermentation?

frankiecj7
10-29-2013, 12:14 PM
As a beekeeper who got a good amount of Black Locust this year, I am also interested in the replies you get. I have been holding it back trying to figure out what kind of mead to make with some of it.

loveofrose
10-29-2013, 12:42 PM
Is black locust similar to tupelo? For some reason, I am thinking they are related. If so, I find tupelo best at 1.01 FG. Semi sweet brings out the flowery nose and flavor.

bernardsmith
10-29-2013, 01:48 PM
Is black locust similar to tupelo? For some reason, I am thinking they are related. If so, I find tupelo best at 1.01 FG. Semi sweet brings out the flowery nose and flavor.

I don't think black locust and tupelo are related (Not certain but I don't think so). Black locust is also sometimes called the False Acacia and the flowers are said to smell like orange blossoms although I am not sure I would say that the jars I got smell of oranges. We have an old black locust growing in our garden but I doubt the apiary got any pollen from this tree.

WVMJack
10-29-2013, 07:30 PM
Black locust smells much better than old orange blossoms everyone is crazy about :) Its a light honey with a floral nose. If you like dry meads make it dry, if you like sweet meads make it sweet. THis is also a good honey for making strawberry melomels due to its lightness and fragrance. We like our meads about 1.1-1,02, but that is us. Did you taste the honey yet, would you think a yeast that promotes keeping the fragrance would be best? D47 in a cool spot would work nicely. THis is our first major honey flow, failed this year here due to the rain. WVMJ

frankiecj7
10-29-2013, 09:37 PM
Don't meant to change direction on this thread, but saw WVMJack's post about no honey this year. Black Locust is a crop I get about Once every 8 years... That is here in NE Pennsylvania. It quite often gets either rained out, or we have a cold spell as its blooming, etc... When we do get it, its a GREAT honey, but most often its only a dream...
For WVMJack:
Based on your recommendations, I am going to make a semisweet traditional mead using it.
I do have a question, you mentioned your F.G. How do you control that ? I have D47 here, and a nice cool spot, not cold, to let it ferment away. I am just not sure how to get to that FG.. Should I be trying to make a certain Starting Gravity ?
I get the feeling you and I are opposites... I am a long time beekeeper, but a very new mead maker. It seems you are vice versa !

bernardsmith
10-29-2013, 09:40 PM
The honey tastes very light and most of the taste is towards the front of my tongue. Quite delicious.

danr
10-29-2013, 11:50 PM
For WVMJack:
Based on your recommendations, I am going to make a semisweet traditional mead using it.
I do have a question, you mentioned your F.G. How do you control that ? I have D47 here, and a nice cool spot, not cold, to let it ferment away. I am just not sure how to get to that FG.. Should I be trying to make a certain Starting Gravity ?

D47 has an alcohol tolerance around 14% ABV, so would likely ferment dry with 15 lbs of honey in a 5 US gallon batch. If you add more honey - ex. 16 lbs - you might get the level of sweetness you want, but yeast can be somewhat unpredictable. Alternates would be to use 15 lbs of honey and cold crash/stabilize the mead at the desired sweetness, or to ferment dry and backsweeten to the desired specific gravity, or to let the mead ferment dry and step feed (add more honey to desired gravity) until the ABV gets to high for it to ferment any more sugars.

My personal strategy would be to ferment dry with 15 lbs of honey, stabilize with sulfite and sorbate, and backsweeten to desired taste. Unless you have a large refrigerator available, cold crashing may not be possible for anything larger than a one gallon batch. Step feeding may be a good option, although I have never done it. Backsweetening allows you to add honey and taste the mead without needing to predetermine the exact gravity you want. If backsweetening, you would probably want to wait to do any fining of the mead until after backsweetening, since this process can add a protein haze to an already cleared mead.

WVMJack
10-30-2013, 02:55 AM
Excellent, always looking for some more bee mentors. Sounds like you need to do just a little more homework before you start this. DanR has a good post, we do the start the ferment at a desired original gravity, ferment to dry, stabalize with KM and sorbate, and backsweeten with more honey to taste, if 1.01 is good we stop there, if it needs more we add more, we have added all the way to 1.030 because that was what was need to balance AND give a desired sweetness. I usually start with about a gallon plus a quart of honey and bring to 5 gallons total volume and see where my gravity is. I usually aim to make a bit more than 5 gallons so when I loose some to racking over into a carboy I can fill it up. Add more honey or more water to get where you want. Do you have any yeast nutrients like Fermaid K to help the yeast ferment easier? Its going to get cloudy again after you backsweeten, you can either add something like a fining agent to clear it or have a whole lot of patience.

Did you guys get a tulip poplar flow, that makes a very nice traditional being darker with more intense flavors than locust.

WVMJ


Don't meant to change direction on this thread, but saw WVMJack's post about no honey this year. Black Locust is a crop I get about Once every 8 years... That is here in NE Pennsylvania. It quite often gets either rained out, or we have a cold spell as its blooming, etc... When we do get it, its a GREAT honey, but most often its only a dream...
For WVMJack:
Based on your recommendations, I am going to make a semisweet traditional mead using it.
I do have a question, you mentioned your F.G. How do you control that ? I have D47 here, and a nice cool spot, not cold, to let it ferment away. I am just not sure how to get to that FG.. Should I be trying to make a certain Starting Gravity ?
I get the feeling you and I are opposites... I am a long time beekeeper, but a very new mead maker. It seems you are vice versa !

frankiecj7
10-30-2013, 07:02 AM
Thanks for the info.. I will look up the post you recommended as well as your info.
Yes, I got Tulip Poplar, but since it was one of the first honey's I pulled this year, it was the first to go... And you are correct about TP, it is a darker honey, yet the body/flavor is more like a lighter honey. Very popular with the customers. As you get more bees/honey, you will find more people wanting to buy it, and you will get where you don't want to sell it !! LOL.. I find myself wanting to keep a lot of the better honeys, but there is only so much honey I can eat ! However, now that I am experimenting with Mead making, I will have more uses for it.
Frank.
Brambleridgehoneyfarm.com

frankiecj7
10-30-2013, 07:10 AM
DanR - and thanks to you as well for the info. I will take what both of you have recommended and give it a try.
Like I said to WV, I am a new mead maker but long time beekeeper. I tried making a mead many years ago, long before I started keeping bees. I used store bought crap honey, and the mead was crap.. That experience kinda frightened me a bit. I hate taking a great honey and using it to make something undrinkable ! LOL.. I have 2 meads going right now (using Schramm's book) and I am hoping at least ONE of them comes out drinkable. If so, I will get more confident and not be afraid to use my best honeys to make mead.

danr
10-30-2013, 06:36 PM
DanR - and thanks to you as well for the info. I will take what both of you have recommended and give it a try.
Like I said to WV, I am a new mead maker but long time beekeeper. I tried making a mead many years ago, long before I started keeping bees. I used store bought crap honey, and the mead was crap.. That experience kinda frightened me a bit. I hate taking a great honey and using it to make something undrinkable ! LOL.. I have 2 meads going right now (using Schramm's book) and I am hoping at least ONE of them comes out drinkable. If so, I will get more confident and not be afraid to use my best honeys to make mead.

I am sure that you will do great. I am relatively new to meadmaking also, although I have read and learned a lot on GotMead. It is a great community of helpful people. Being patient is the hardest part; all of my meads have tasted better with age, although sweeter meads are typically drinkable earlier than dry meads. There are some posts on this site from folks who have used different yeasts to get a good tasting mead quicker, although I have not tried that yet. Nine months has been the earliest I have starting drinking mine.

Create a mead log on this site so we can follow along and see how things turn out.

Dan

frankiecj7
10-30-2013, 06:53 PM
I am sure that you will do great. I am relatively new to meadmaking also, although I have read and learned a lot on GotMead. It is a great community of helpful people. Being patient is the hardest part; all of my meads have tasted better with age, although sweeter meads are typically drinkable earlier than dry meads. There are some posts on this site from folks who have used different yeasts to get a good tasting mead quicker, although I have not tried that yet. Nine months has been the earliest I have starting drinking mine.

Create a mead log on this site so we can follow along and see how things turn out.

Dan

I would do that (create a mead log) if I knew how !! LOL I will have to do a bit of poking around to see if I can figure it out.

danr
10-30-2013, 08:39 PM
I would do that (create a mead log) if I knew how !! LOL I will have to do a bit of poking around to see if I can figure it out.

Just create a new post in the The Mead Log! (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=148) area in the forums, and keep your recipe and notes there.

TheAlchemist
11-02-2013, 06:44 PM
Oh Sweet Dumpling of mine...I have 12# of BL honey sitting in my kitchen waiting for me to make something of it.

Reading this thread I realize that I haven't even tasted it yet!

Yummm...tastes like there's a hint of linden in this, too.