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Farmboyc
09-05-2015, 12:08 AM
So I'm pretty new to the mead thing but I have been reading a tin of threads and I have question.

What is the advantage of stabilizing a mead once fermentation is complete.

I have never stabilized anything I have brewed and I generally go with the least amount of chemical additions I can get away with.

Crowing
09-05-2015, 12:55 AM
I haven't stabilized yet either. But my meads have been dry, if you want a mead with some residual sugar there's always a chance it could ferment and make bottle bombs. Unless you pasteurize, which kills flavor and aroma on its own I would imagine. However my dry meads have tasted sweet enough for me, so it's up to your taste if you want to chem then bottle.

58limited
09-05-2015, 10:37 AM
But my meads have been dry, if you want a mead with some residual sugar there's always a chance it could ferment and make bottle bombs. Unless you pasteurize, which kills flavor and aroma on its own I would imagine. However my dry meads have tasted sweet enough for me, so it's up to your taste if you want to chem then bottle.

^^What he said^^ Fermentation may restart if you back-sweeten without stabilizing. Been there, done that, corks popping across the room, mess to clean up. Plus potassium metabisulfite helps to preserve wine and mead over the years (if you can keep from drinking it for that long).

Farmboyc
09-05-2015, 11:34 AM
So it is basically to prevent a restart after back sweetening. Makes sense to me. If I ever go down that road I will follow the SO2.

What do you mea by preserving the mead? I though the alcohol did that.

58limited
09-05-2015, 11:59 AM
Helps to slow or prevent "spoilage" over long term storage from oxidation and other factors. Unless you purge your bottles with CO2 or nitrogen before bottling, you will have a little oxygen in the head space under the cork. Not necessarily bad in meads since the sherry taste that develops over the years can be good:

http://winemakersacademy.com/stabilizing-wine/

I make port from kits and they all advise to add more K meta than what is included with the kit if one plans to store it longer that 6 months. Although they are good right after bottling, these kits really (I mean REALLY) get good after two years of bottle conditioning.

I use sorbate and K meta in my meads mostly to kill off yeast since I back sweeten most of them (I like a semi-sweet mead around SG 1.012)