View Full Version : Is My First Mead Ruined?

06-01-2015, 11:30 AM
I have a couple gallons of extra honey I raised and always wondered what mead was like

I made a 1 gal batch on May 11 in a 2 gal pail with airlock
1-gal water
1 qt. honey 2.8 lbs
1 can frozen raspberry lemonade (Had High Fructose Syrup in it) ???
1/2 packet yeast K1-1116
1 tsp energizer
1/2 tsp nutrient
Starting Sg=1.10
First week I swirled bucket to degas and added 1/4 cup cane sugar because I thought it was not bubbling very much) ???

11 Days later on May 23, 2015 (bubbling had stopped)
Racked to a 1 gal carboy
Sq= 1.001

Did I ruin this or should I throw this batch out because I added the can of frozen raspberry/lemonade with HFC & 1/4 cup cane sugar?
I sampled the batch and thought it tasted like alcohol could give me heart burn, not a hint of lemonade/raspberry
Now that it has been in the 1 gal carboy on 1st racking for 1 week I see no bubbling,
Can I add a can of frozen grape juice without corn syrup to add some flavor this late in the game? (it is pretty clear with maybe .25" lee's on bottom)

Should I walk away and just rack it once a month or so hoping it will mellow out?


06-01-2015, 12:48 PM
Everything sounds normal to me. It probably fermented "hot". I define that as it fermented not in it's optimal range (could have been to high temp, not enough nutrient, etc...) and gave that "hot" alcohol kick.

My opinion is it just need some good time to mellow out. No additional racking necessary. I would hold off trying to add anything for a while (4-6 months) so it can start to mellow. Then re-evaluate.

06-02-2015, 01:09 AM
What effect does using a can of juice with High Fructose Syrup & White Cane sugar have on the fermentation and taste?
I hope I never do this again, but I have been nervous about using those ingredients
I'll have to patiently wait and see


06-02-2015, 07:40 AM
Taken from limited experience with refined sugars...

Shouldn't affect much. A lot of "empty" sugars can lead to it being light on taste and could have an affect on your fermentation process by how much nutrients may be needed.

I have made meads with fruit juices with added sugars in them before with good results. As long as the must had a good robust flavor when starting, the meads turn out with a good amount of flavor in the end.

Basically, a bit of a refined sugar is fine, but I find no reason to go adding it on purpose.

06-02-2015, 07:48 AM
Sugar and HFCS are basically flavorless, so I imagine the only effects it would have are making your mead more alcoholic. Looking at your FG, it definitely ate it. Given the nature of HFCS, the yeast may have had to work a little harder to eat it, which could have stressed it out. That's pure speculation on my part, though. Here's a thread from HomeBrewTalk where they discussed it: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=277843

Really, any "hot," fusel flavors are generally due to the mead still being very young, using too little nutrients for your OG, low pH (ie, overly acidic), and/or high fermentation temperatures. If anything, with your lemonade addition, I'd be more worried about the pH than the corn syrup.

06-07-2015, 09:58 PM
I'm not worried about the sugars any addition may have had as much as if there were any preservatives in the can. That's what may be causing the problems. Sugar levels that are too high for the yeast are easily cured by adding water but preservatives, not so much.

Sent from my TARDIS at the restaurant at the end of the universe while eating Phil.