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Squatchy
05-31-2016, 11:17 AM
Purchased a gallon of rare cats claw honey. Haven't found much info about it regarding Mead making.

Do any of you have any experience with this honey?

I suppose it would only be fitting to make a trad with it, but any advice is welcomed.

beecarp
06-01-2016, 12:43 AM
I bought a 1 pound jar in AZ in march of this year of cats claw honey. I had never tasted it and was curious. Now i wish I had bought more, but had to take it in checked baggage and didn't really have room. The taste is very subtle, delicious and addictive. I found a slight smokey aftertaste. What are you taste impressions, Squatchy?
No experience with fermenting it, just eating it out of the jar mostly.

Squatchy
09-21-2016, 10:26 AM
I bought a 1 pound jar in AZ in march of this year of cats claw honey. I had never tasted it and was curious. Now i wish I had bought more, but had to take it in checked baggage and didn't really have room. The taste is very subtle, delicious and addictive. I found a slight smokey aftertaste. What are you taste impressions, Squatchy?
No experience with fermenting it, just eating it out of the jar mostly.

This batch has been done for a while now. It's very nice. I believe I will enter it in The Mazer Cup this fall. I hate paying such a high price for honey but I'm going to have to make more of this traditional.

JoopRysanek
09-21-2016, 11:56 AM
Cats claw honey is really delicious but rare. dont miss it even you found it at high price. I dont have also any info regarding Mead making.

beecarp
09-26-2016, 11:53 PM
This batch has been done for a while now. It's very nice. I believe I will enter it in The Mazer Cup this fall. I hate paying such a high price for honey but I'm going to have to make more of this traditional.

Hey Squatchy, I am very curious as to the yeast you used for this particular traditional. Do you use a certain yeast for a delicate honey and a certain yeast for a more robust honey? Also, did you decide to leave it a bit sweet, oak, vanilla etc. I have 3 distinct wild flower honeys at home and wish to "pick your brain". Thanks

Squatchy
09-27-2016, 12:57 AM
Hey Squatchy, I am very curious as to the yeast you used for this particular traditional. Do you use a certain yeast for a delicate honey and a certain yeast for a more robust honey? Also, did you decide to leave it a bit sweet, oak, vanilla etc. I have 3 distinct wild flower honeys at home and wish to "pick your brain". Thanks

He Beecarp. Hope all is well with you.

So this was made with D-47. I like this yeast a lot. It's one of my favorites for sure. This turned out so nice I decided not to add a single thing to it. It finished at 1010. When I make it again I will do the same and may add just a taste of barrel component. (oak) It just seemed so nice I just decided to leave it be. If I were to guess the FG in a blind test I would have guessed it higher so the perceived sweetness is higher. I like to use delicate honeys for trads and neutral honeys for meths and mels so the ingredients have a better chance to show. I would consider wildflower honey to be best used in a big, sweet "fruit bomb". With so much fruit you won't have to work so hard to to compete with the honey as much.

I think the honey/yeast combination is still hard for me to know in my head what it will be like when I am using yeast I don't have much experience. I think in general, the temp will speak a good bit to most mazers and the yeast choice. Obviously if you can control the temps then the sky is the limit. If all you have to work with is ambient temps then you need to consider that when picking a yeast. High maintenance yeast are less fussy when you mix them with lots of fruits. Show meads do well with darker honey, or better yet a blend of darker honeys. For a while now. Many times I will split a large batch in two and use 2 different yeast and then blend them at the end of they day. That way I can make a drier version along with a sweet version and pick yeast attributes from different yeast. Sometimes I want a full bodied, round in the mouth profile. Sometimes I don't feel I want such a round mouth.

I might be more able to help you if you wanted to ask about certain styles and/or ingredient list. So far I have only been making high ABV meads and haven't yet gotten into short meads too much.

As I move further along, I find I am moving towards a drier mead more so than what I liked when I first started. It's also fun to mix finished meads together.

My favorite honeys are Clover, Mesquite and alfalfa for standard work horses. OB has a place and now the Cats Claw. QA-23 is now my favorite yeast for pyments. I used to like RC-212 for that. 71-B for mels. 71-B for cysers if you like the sweet and round. K1-V and D47 for dryer cysers. D47, DV-10 and D-21 and K1V all work well for meths. RC-212, QA23 and EC for ports.

I'm probably rambling at this point. Glad to help if you have specifics or comments on above :)

beecarp
09-27-2016, 09:54 AM
That was some well worded ramblings. I much appreciate you taking the time to respond. I am currently at the mercy of the ambient temperature of a spare bedroom. Things are cooling off quickly here and I have many plans for brewing.
I have just cut out and removed a colony of unwanted bees and their honey from a building. It is very dark and tasty. Not buckwheatey. That will be used in a traditional, The target FG will be 1015-1020 range. What do you think of D-21 for that type? I have never used this yeast and have read many people praising it.
PS, hope that this is not a complete hijack of your original post.

Squatchy
09-27-2016, 12:03 PM
I think that would be great. It's one of my favorite yeast. Very well-rounded mouth.

caduseus
09-27-2016, 12:19 PM
what temperature is your spare room?

beecarp
09-27-2016, 05:14 PM
what temperature is your spare room?

Right now at 2:OO PM it's at 76 F. That's as hot as it will get this season. It will drop to about 65 by morning. I can keep a pretty steady 62-68 mid October through mid April. We run the HVAC only as needed and I shut the register to that room during heating season. I keep the register open when cooling. We get hot summers here. Putting a surplus fridge in the room added to the need to cool, so the door stays open mostly.
I may consider the garage as a place to switch to for a month or so.