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Tsuchi
01-29-2005, 12:27 PM
At the start of jan i began a batch of cranberry mellomel. And Things went along ok but im wondering if my decision at the outset of cooking down the berries was a BIG mistake because im now here with a mead with a very odd mouth feel and it is not at all enyojable. Also it has a really odd murk/ jelly / separatin thing going on at the bottom say an inch or so high just on top of the yeast lees I log my meads in excell so forgive to loss of format but it should sum up of what i did. Oh and though I dont list it every time... anything that toches my mead has a long beachy water bath for sanitation.

Cranberries (fresh) $7.00 1.36 kg
cucumber wildflower honey, fergeson apiarys $15.00 2.4 kgs
no name creamed honey $10.00 2 kgs
Lalvin 71b-1122 $1.50 5g
(added mid way) 1kg billy liquid honey



Date, Time, Grav/Test , observations, Process

Jan 2 2005, 6:30 PM, n/a, Jam like with pink froth top, Take 10cTap h20 add 3lb/1.36kg fresh cranberries cook untill all are burst and intigrated into water

Jan 2 2005 7:30 PM, n/a, as above ,Add 2l spring h20 to pot, stir pour into primary… add 2l to pot to rinse out remaining stir lid with tape over port hole till am when I can pick up airlock and bung and yeast and honey… Also ad 1/2 cup black river 100% cranberry juice.

3-Jan 1:30 PM, 5 cran must test

3-Jan 1:30 PM, 5.5 tastes tart sweet and just a but of berry warmed up honey, poured rinced jars with ot tap and added that to the must also… top up to mid lid line

3-Jan 1:30 PM, n/a Pitched out dated yeast Lalvin 71b-1122 made a starter to test how rocking and rolloing it will get… slow but about half of it got going so mixed 1/2 must with warm water and stired in air then let stand 10 then stirred then let stan then stirred
3-Jan 6:00 PM, n/a bubbles!
4-Jan 8:30 PM, 5 lots o bubbles stirred
6-Jan 8:00 PM, 5 blurp blurp blurp blurp Added 1 kb billy bee honey into the mix though this did not seen to raise the sg any…. Hmm very frustrating

7-Jan 8:00 PM, 5.4 don’t ask! I don’t know why…
8-Jan 5:00 PM bubblegum pink .. A lot of the sediment transferred but htats ok Racked into glass carboy to leave behind skins and pulp

9-Jan 10:00 PM 4.2 foamy again

15-Jan 10:00 AM 3.8 rolling juices when I put a flash light to it.. Quite neat.. Foamy on top…filtering this is gong to be a pain!

20-Jan 10:30 AM 2 murkey abd cloudy there is a lighter layer of murk near the bottom… very odd not solid at all moves easily when I move the carboy

29-Jan 10:00 AM 1 still cloudy layer on the bottem Smell alchohal wine, honey, Tastes tart!tart!..fizz… chalk….. Very thich and fuzzy in the mouth .. Not really enjoyable at all… I think I may rack off of the murk and top up with 3 kgs honey…. Got to think about it though. To be honest I don’t even want to finish this tiny half glass


Any sudgestions would be helpfull, this is my first mel and I'm not sure if things are progressing normaly or badly but if taste is any indication I would guess bad.

jab
01-29-2005, 01:01 PM
Pectin is a substance in fruits, when heated and combined with fruit acid and sugar, causes the substance to congeal or "gel."

What effect that will have on the mead is unclear to me though I am sure others will be able to give you that information.

Pewter_of_Deodar
01-29-2005, 01:18 PM
I think I would urge you to set the batch aside in a cold dark place for a month or three.

There are many fruits that take time for the tartness to age out of the mead. Cranberries are one of them...

I had one of my batches that tasted chalky after I raked because I tried not to leave a lot behind and ended up racking some sludge. The sludge did not ruin things, but cause me to have to rack again sooner. That same batch, my cyser, seemed to have two stages of clearing, the first was when the yellowness dropped out leaving a half cleared cider color. The second was when the cyser actually cleared to the point where I could read through it. The second clearing had a visible band that started at the top and slowly grew downward until the batch was clear.

But I would encourage you to quit playing with it and allow the batch to age undisturbed...

Good luck,
Pewter

Dan McFeeley
01-29-2005, 01:26 PM
Pectin is a substance in fruits, when heated and combined with fruit acid and sugar, causes the substance to congeal or "gel."

What effect that will have on the mead is unclear to me though I am sure others will be able to give you that information.


Pectin, whether in a wine or mead, will cause cloudiness. The best remedy is a few drops of pectinase enzyme, which breaks down the pectin. It has to be added to the must prior to adding yeast, since the rising alcohol level will eventually denature the enzyme.

Most wine supply stores/outlets will carry this. If you have some on hand, add it quick!

I found a note on the BrewBoard about cranberries having a high pectin level. http://www.brewboard.com/index.php?act=ST&f=8&t=12534&s=

I've made cranberry melomels without pectinase and they cleared without a problem, on the other hand, I only heated the honey must to no more than 175 degrees F for about 15 minutes. It's the heat that sets the pectin and causes it to cloud a wine or mead. If you didn't heat the honey must much, it should be ok.

Tsuchi
01-29-2005, 01:55 PM
Pictures worth a thousand words? should I leave it be? or rack and then leave it be.


http://img171.exs.cx/img171/3567/p0020433zw.th.jpg (http://img171.exs.cx/my.php?loc=img171&image=p0020433zw.jpg)

Pewter_of_Deodar
01-29-2005, 03:07 PM
I would rack it but only because it appears you have between 1/2 inch and 1 inch of lees on the bottom of the carboy.

Tsuchi
01-29-2005, 03:15 PM
that was sort of my thought and thats why its up on the stool at the moment. I'll rack into my 6 gal from the 6.5 its in and that should take down some of the x-tra head space. But you see in the picture that the lees are kinda weird... jelly ish and foggy not remotely solid... I think Ill be losing a fair bit of volume in what gets left behind. But better that than yucky mead.

Oskaar
01-29-2005, 08:10 PM
I agree with Pewter on racking it now. More because of the yeast you used than the amount of lees at the bottom. 71B is made to rack quickly and get it off the lees because the yeast is not designed to add "carbohydrate" mouth feel like the D-47 is.

I mostly go by the type of yeast and the recommendations of the yeast manufacturer as to when I rack off the lees, than by how much trub is at the bottom. But, if you have a significant trub buildup, it makes good sense to rack off of it, especially if the yeast is not designed for prolonged exposure to the mead.

Hope that helps,

Cheers,

Oskaar

jab
01-29-2005, 11:42 PM
Plus racking means you get to taste it!

Tsuchi
01-30-2005, 11:16 AM
OH NO! not again, that was what had me worried to begin with. I think ill wait a bit before i try that again Lol re-read "

29-Jan 10:00 AM 1 still cloudy layer on the bottem (Took a sample) It Smells of , alchohal, wine, honey, Tastes... tart!tart!..fizz… chalk….. Very thich and fuzzy in the mouth .. Not really enjoyable at all… I think I may rack off of the murk and top up with 3 kgs honey…. Got to think about it though. To be honest I don’t even want to finish this tiny half glass




I've racked now and I'm thinking of topping up with some honey added and then ignoring it till later, signifigantly later untill it needs to be racked and i can see if its improved. :)

Oskaar
01-30-2005, 02:38 PM
GFI (Go For It) sounds like it should be pretty tastey. You should spin a gravity too to see where you are on the scale, and how far your yeast has gone. That will help you determine where you are relative to where you want to be.

Your cranberry mel sounds like it should be wonderful.

Remember, wherever you go, there you are.

Cheers,

Oskaar

Tsuchi
01-30-2005, 06:48 PM
I must have gotten some of the lees/ jelly/yuck in the last sample i tasted becuase after i racked, then topped up and added some honey to work on the exceedinly tart part of the flavor its not bad... As for sg it was 1.01 before the top up + honey and 1.022 after. And it tastes better still kinda blech but its just a baby so I'll give it time.

Oskaar
01-30-2005, 09:01 PM
Watch closely for bubbling, if you get a strong secondary fermentation your yeast could ferment completely to dryness, although 71B isn't as aggressive as most of the other lalvin yeasts, according to Clayton Cone it can be fed up to 16 - 18% under the right conditions. Just watch it to make sure you don't overshoot where you want to end the fermentation.

Cheers,

Oskaar