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NightWolf
07-21-2017, 03:34 PM
So after what's been a very busy summer, I finally have time to devote to my next effort. The Meadowfoam wasn't cheap so please look this plan over and let me know if there are any holes in it before I start. TOSNA methodology:

Batch #2 Traditional Meadowfoam Show/Sack (1.25 Gal)
OG – 1.120 (Brix 28)
Target FG – 1.015
Yeast – 5g Lalvin D47 (Med Nutrient req)
Go-Ferm - 6.25g (x20 H2O = 125 ML of water)
Fermaid-O – 5g total
Honey: 4 lbs. – Meadowfoam

Nitrogen(N) Requirements:
Brix (28) x 10 = Sugar (g/L) 28x10=280
For Medium N requiring strains, Sugar (g/L) x 0.90 = YAN requirement 280x.9=252
50 (ppm) Effectiveness using Fermaid-O
1g/gal of Fermaid-O = 50ppm (or mg) of N/L effectiveness 5 x 50= 250

Steps:
Yeast starter:
Mix 6.25g Go-Ferm to 125ML of water @ 104 degrees in a flask.
Add 5g yeast and put on stir plate for 15 mins.
WAIT UNTIL I SEE Proof of the yeast starting their thing, then add 1.25g of Ferm-O (1st feed)
Slowly add small amounts must at same temp (68-72 degrees) to the starter to attemperate over a few hours time, then pitch starter into the must.
Must:
Combine 1.25 Gal of Sping H2O and 4 lbs. Meadowfoam honey. Stir like mad. Once stirred, I’ll start the Aerator for 15-20 mins. Will pitch when the starter is ready.
Maintenance:
Stir daily. Add 1.25g Ferm-O at 48 hrs, again at 72 hrs and again at 1/3 break (final add). Hyrdo readings daily. Aeration 2x daily for 1st 3 days, then just stirring degassing daily. 5 min aerations.
After 3 weeks of stable SG readings, let it sit for 1 week, then rack.

Dadux
07-21-2017, 04:43 PM
Some stuff.
First, terminology. Sack mead is a mead with a lot of honey. This would probably be categorozied as such. Show mead is a mead made with only water honey and yeast (no nutrients). So this is not a show mead.

Now, the recipe.
Unlikely to get that FG directly. D47 Will ferment all the honey if treated well.
I dont understand the calculations. All good until 252. 252/50=5 x 1.25 (gals) = 6 grams of Ferm O needed.
1g per gal does not give 50ppm. Dont mess with this its complicated stuff you dont really need. Its explained in a sticky in case you want to know but its dense stuff you dont need to make mead anyway.

Yeast starter. Why? No need for a starter. After adding the 5 grams just wait 15 min, then add 50ml or so of must wait 5 minutes and if needed repeat but it should be enough to bring must and yeast temp within 10°C. Then pitch. You dont need a starter. A starter is not done im 100ml of water. Dont add nutrients to yeast while rehydrating.
When you see some bubbling on the must or after 24h sonce pitching the yeast add the first feed.

You want to keep the temps at 15-20°C, better on thenlow end of that.

Once the ferment hits 1.000 or very close, stir/shake daily or every two days for a month. Then wait a week and rack. After that time the ferment will be over for sure you dont need to constantly monitore SG. Im just saying. Specially if it hits 1.000 its done or pretty close to done.

Squatchy
07-21-2017, 06:16 PM
You don't want to feed the first add until you have already pitched and lag is over and the yeast have moved into the growth phase.

You need to be able to control your temps at 60 degrees or so if your going to use that yeast. I would suggest D21 instead.

NightWolf
07-22-2017, 07:01 AM
As always, thank you both for your mentoring. ;) I'll strike the stir plate/starter steps and I just had the 1st nutrient addition in the wrong place. I do know not to add it to the rehyrdation phase.

Dadux, thanks for clarifying the difference between show and sack. I never could find a good description that differentiated the two.And I'll stay away from the math for now. It was based on TOSNA 2.0 on Mead made right. I'll just stick with the batch builder and TOSNA 2.0 calculator on the MeadMkr site.

Squatchy, Looking over the yeast choices, ICV D21 looked perfect, but I can't find less than 500g for sale on the internet. Was very surprised Amazon didn't have any. 500g will end up going bad on me. Closest I have is Red Star Premier Rouge. That gets my tolerance up to 16% and looks like it will not need to ferment in the low 60 degree range. I can do mid 60's as my basement stays around 64.

Squatchy
07-22-2017, 10:06 AM
Morewine.com should have it.

One thought about a show mead. Because Fermaid-O is nothing more than yeast. You could use the O and it would still be "show" mead. People have been feeding show meads yeast for ever.

Dadux
07-22-2017, 11:01 AM
Its not only you should not add during rehydration, is that if you add it to 125ml of water, the concentration is brutal, and dangerous for the yeast.

The math is ok, but its not true that 1g/gal of FermO gives 50ppm. In fact, 1g of ferm O gives 65 ppm to 1 liter. 1 gal is nearly 4 times that. But in terms of nitrogen quality, it works such as if you were adding 50ppm to a gal with 1 gram, altough it doesnt really do that chemically speaking.

@Squatchy: do you prefer CY3079 over D21 or vice versa for trads? (no sur lie, normal protocol). Never used either but CY was in my list of strains to try and D21 wasnt for some reason.

Squatchy
07-22-2017, 07:16 PM
D21 is probably by far the best yeast for mead period. If stranded on an island with one choice, D21 would be my choice

NightWolf
07-23-2017, 04:12 PM
[QUOTE=Squatchy;266486]Morewine.com should have it.

Thanks Squatchy, They did have it and I have 80g's on the way. Seeing what you said about D21, I'll likely end up using it all before it expires :-)

Squatchy
07-23-2017, 06:27 PM
Glad to help :)

NightWolf
07-30-2017, 08:02 PM
Got things started Friday. I did need to add a little over .5 lbs of honey to get it to a starting OG of 1.112, which surprised me a bit. I'm through the 1st, 24hr. and 48hr. additions of Ferm-O as of this evening. Have aerated daily and I'm stirring/degassing. Was at 1.090 yesterday afternoon, so it seems to be off to a good start. Storing at 64 degrees.

dingurth
07-30-2017, 09:59 PM
Got things started Friday. I did need to add a little over .5 lbs of honey to get it to a starting OG of 1.112, which surprised me a bit. I'm through the 1st, 24hr. and 48hr. additions of Ferm-O as of this evening. Have aerated daily and I'm stirring/degassing. Was at 1.090 yesterday afternoon, so it seems to be off to a good start. Storing at 64 degrees.

Sounds like you got all your ducks in a row. :)

Different honey's can have different sugar content, so sometimes it takes a little more to hit your desired OG. I ran into the same thing with cranberry honey.
So you used 4.5lbs total, or 5lbs?

NightWolf
07-31-2017, 06:16 AM
Sounds like you got all your ducks in a row. :)

Different honey's can have different sugar content, so sometimes it takes a little more to hit your desired OG. I ran into the same thing with cranberry honey.
So you used 4.5lbs total, or 5lbs?

Thanks Dingurth, I was suspecting that it was the honey type. It is a good point for us beginners making small batches to start: Make sure you have an extra pound or two on hand to ensure you reach your desired OG!! Total honey ended up at 4.6lbs

NightWolf
08-04-2017, 02:55 PM
8/4 Update. Things are moving along well:
7/30 - 1.090 PH 3.2
7/31 - 1.074 PH 3.1 - Final addition of Ferm-O added
8/2 - 1.052 PH 3.1
8/3 - 1.040 PH 3.1
8/4 - 1.032 PH 3.0

Been stirring/degassing daily to keep the yeast in suspension.

Squatchy, I know you've said you don't sweet the 3.0 PH range or a little less, but I'm starting to wonder if a 1/4 tsp of Pot-Carb is in order?

Squatchy
08-04-2017, 03:58 PM
8/4 Update. Things are moving along well:
7/30 - 1.090 PH 3.2
7/31 - 1.074 PH 3.1 - Final addition of Ferm-O added
8/2 - 1.052 PH 3.1
8/3 - 1.040 PH 3.1
8/4 - 1.032 PH 3.0

Been stirring/degassing daily to keep the yeast in suspension.

Squatchy, I know you've said you don't sweet the 3.0 PH range or a little less, but I'm starting to wonder if a 1/4 tsp of Pot-Carb is in order?

Personally I wouldn't. I doubt it will drop any lower at this point. I think usually the lower pH in a finished mead helps the profile from not getting too flabby. If it were me I would hold out as I think the biggest drop has already happened.

NightWolf
08-04-2017, 04:11 PM
Personally I wouldn't. I doubt it will drop any lower at this point. I think usually the lower pH in a finished mead helps the profile from not getting too flabby. If it were me I would hold out as I think the biggest drop has already happened.

Thanks :-) I was really hoping you'd say that as I'm wanting to keep this as clean as possible. I'll keep monitoring and hopefully it holds here.

max.barbarian
08-09-2017, 06:37 PM
D21 is probably by far the best yeast for mead period. If stranded on an island with one choice, D21 would be my choice

Well, I know what strain I'm going to be picking up next to try out!

NightWolf
09-26-2017, 03:59 PM
9/26/17 Update: Well I've been holding off on updating as this has not been turning out like I expected. It finished dry at 1.000 and about 14.7ish ABV. I'm ok with dry, but it ended with strong fusel tastes, strong esters, and a very faint hint of the Meadow foam honey which I was hoping to highlight. On 9-7 I racked and added 1 Madagascar Vanilla bean. I've been hoping it'll age out over time, but a taste today tells me it's going to take a good amount of time. So what did I do wrong? Here's my thoughts:

1. 5g of D21 yeast was too much at pitch?
2. Once past the 1/3 break, I was still degassing/stirring vigorously. Did this over oxygenate?
3. This really took off in the beginning. Did I over work the yeasties early on?

Anyways, now it's a sit and wait game I believe.

dingurth
09-26-2017, 04:43 PM
1) It's difficult to over pitch yeast. 2g/gallon is standard, but more is better/fine. At 5g, you shouldn't have issues.
2) It's hard to oxygenate an active ferment, degassing was the right thing to do. Its even harder to oxygenate a trad.
3) I've had faster ferments that aged out fine in a few months.

For my own thoughts, you can always stabilize and backsweeten. I prefer off-dry/semisweet. This will give you more of the meadowfoam profile and help cover some harshness. At 2 months, its still fairly young. Time (and oak if you want to look into it) will help.

If I had to guess, the fusels might be from the temp. You said you were keeping it in your basement right? That stays at ~64F? The trouble is that fermentation can push the temperature of the must as much as 10 degrees above the ambient temp. I like to keep mine in a water bath, even if the temp is cool, as that will keep it more stable/low. Were you measuring temps throughout?

I think your last ph reading was 3.0 right? That is on the low side, you might even buffer the final product. The ph can effect the acid profile (its not a one-to-one relationship but they are close), which might make it seem harsher.

jwaldo
09-26-2017, 05:11 PM
What was the fermentation temperature?

Thanks,
Jwaldo.

NightWolf
09-26-2017, 08:27 PM
1) It's difficult to over pitch yeast. 2g/gallon is standard, but more is better/fine. At 5g, you shouldn't have issues.
2) It's hard to oxygenate an active ferment, degassing was the right thing to do. Its even harder to oxygenate a trad.
3) I've had faster ferments that aged out fine in a few months.

For my own thoughts, you can always stabilize and backsweeten. I prefer off-dry/semisweet. This will give you more of the meadowfoam profile and help cover some harshness. At 2 months, its still fairly young. Time (and oak if you want to look into it) will help.

If I had to guess, the fusels might be from the temp. You said you were keeping it in your basement right? That stays at ~64F? The trouble is that fermentation can push the temperature of the must as much as 10 degrees above the ambient temp. I like to keep mine in a water bath, even if the temp is cool, as that will keep it more stable/low. Were you measuring temps throughout?

I think your last ph reading was 3.0 right? That is on the low side, you might even buffer the final product. The ph can effect the acid profile (its not a one-to-one relationship but they are close), which might make it seem harsher.

Thanks for the feed back Dingurth. I did omit some steps from my previous update that are noteworthy for where it's at now. On 9-2 I cold crashed it for a week before racking at which time I added 1/8th tsp of K-Meta and 1/2 tsp of K-Sorbate.

Yes the PH was low. I'll check it again tomorrow. As to your and jwaldo's question, the storage temp runs 67-68 in my basement, so if than increased by 10 degrees due to the fermentation, then I wasn't in a good place. I was measuring ambient room temps, but not the ferment itself. Lesson learned. I'll need to find a way to adjust, and a large water tub seems practical for me.

I will most likely ensure stabilization and back sweeten to taste.

Squatchy
09-27-2017, 12:07 AM
9/26/17 Update: Well I've been holding off on updating as this has not been turning out like I expected. It finished dry at 1.000 and about 14.7ish ABV. I'm ok with dry, but it ended with strong fusel tastes, strong esters, and a very faint hint of the Meadow foam honey which I was hoping to highlight. On 9-7 I racked and added 1 Madagascar Vanilla bean. I've been hoping it'll age out over time, but a taste today tells me it's going to take a good amount of time. So what did I do wrong? Here's my thoughts:

1. 5g of D21 yeast was too much at pitch?
2. Once past the 1/3 break, I was still degassing/stirring vigorously. Did this over oxygenate?
3. This really took off in the beginning. Did I over work the yeasties early on?

Anyways, now it's a sit and wait game I believe.
I generally use 3 grams a gallon and sometimes more. You did not use too much yeast.
You should calm down after the sugar break. With that said you didn't hurt the mead. As it was still making lots of CO2 and I doubt that very little if any O2 got in the mead. You just want to rouse your yeast after the break to keep the lees in suspension.

Squatchy
09-27-2017, 12:08 AM
1) It's difficult to over pitch yeast. 2g/gallon is standard, but more is better/fine. At 5g, you shouldn't have issues.
2) It's hard to oxygenate an active ferment, degassing was the right thing to do. Its even harder to oxygenate a trad.
3) I've had faster ferments that aged out fine in a few months.

For my own thoughts, you can always stabilize and backsweeten. I prefer off-dry/semisweet. This will give you more of the meadowfoam profile and help cover some harshness. At 2 months, its still fairly young. Time (and oak if you want to look into it) will help.

If I had to guess, the fusels might be from the temp. You said you were keeping it in your basement right? That stays at ~64F? The trouble is that fermentation can push the temperature of the must as much as 10 degrees above the ambient temp. I like to keep mine in a water bath, even if the temp is cool, as that will keep it more stable/low. Were you measuring temps throughout?

I think your last ph reading was 3.0 right? That is on the low side, you might even buffer the final product. The ph can effect the acid profile (its not a one-to-one relationship but they are close), which might make it seem harsher.

Hey bud :)

One thing you might like to know is ethanol itself actually oxidizes.

dingurth
09-27-2017, 12:47 AM
Hey bud :)

One thing you might like to know is ethanol itself actually oxidizes.

Yeah, I've been curious about this. I think I had read somewhere its one of the first things to oxidize too. But the anecdotal that trads are harder to oxidize must come from somewhere right? I don't have a good comparison or experience, but I would suspect that its less noticeable than when other things oxidize. Or its even desired? That rounded out sense/taking the edge off the alcohol, right?

I just figure that my bottle of scotch isn't going bad, so it must not be that severe :P
But certainly open to education.

Squatchy
09-27-2017, 11:00 AM
Well I have partially responsible in being one to say that trads were not to be worried about. I didn't know until in the past 6 months or so about the ethanol oxidizing. YOu make a good point about your scotch. Something we need to look into further :)