View Full Version : How bad will this be?

07-22-2004, 10:45 AM
I started my very first gallon batch of mead before finding this site. Because of all the good information here, I've decided that maybe things should have been done a little differently.

I used 3 lbs. of honey - the cheap from the grocery store kind, Fleischmann's bread yeast, a little apple juice, and tap water. The glass jug was sterilized before anything was put into it, but there is no carboy. Somebody told me to use a balloon and a rubber band instead. It's been hiding in the coolest place in the house bubbling away for the past month or so.

After reading about all these different yeasts, honeys, tools, and other such things I've gotten nervous. Will it turn out all right using the bread yeast? Would it have been better to special order honey? Is it all right to use a balloon over the top of the jug like that? Please help me stop obsessing over this. The waiting's bad enough as it is.

07-22-2004, 01:31 PM
I don't see too many problems with what you've got set up.

A carboy is just a glass jug. I think you must mean that you don't have an air lock--which must be the case since you are using a balloon. A balloon is better than nothing, but if I were you I would try to get my hands on an air lock from a home brew store. It's a question of reliability. It's designed for the purpose, and you can sterilize it with some certainty. While a balloon is enough to keep dust out, I'm not sure you can trust it. And it's liable to fill up and blow off rather than leak a little bit at a time like you want it to.

As far as bread yeast is concerned, it will do. One of Joe Mattioli recipe's calls for bread yeast and he's adamant that it makes good drinkable mead in a month or a two. I've used bread yeast before too and I find the biggest problem with it is that it doesn't settle very well. That's just a minor problem though.

Half the fun is in the experiment, so I wouldn't worry to much. I'm sure it will turn out fine.

07-22-2004, 08:28 PM
To prevent the balloon from blowing off, put a pin hole in it and put elastic bands around the base of the balloon to hold it securely to the bottle. That will keep the mead from carbonating and allow the excess CO2 to escape. It's an old recipe for wine that I used to have called balloon wine and it specifically tells you to do just what you did, use bread yeast, a 1 gallon jar and a balloon.

07-22-2004, 09:11 PM
What the heck?

Half the fun of this stuff is experimenting! I've made beer and mead with bread yeast and it turned fine!

Although I did keep craving peanut butter when I drank `em . . .



07-23-2004, 09:18 PM
Oy. You're right, Derf, it was an airlock. Guess I shouldn't post anymore in the middle of the night.

Thanks to all three of you. It's put my mind at ease to know that this will be atl least tolerable - maybe. Now to stock up on peanut butter...

07-26-2004, 12:09 AM
I used 3 lbs. of honey - the cheap from the grocery store kind...

The advantage of getting honey from a place other than a store is the lower price. Just thought you might find it helpful to know that, although the honey from the store works too, it is actually much more expensive than if you got it from a local source. If you want to go "cheap", find a local beekeeper or, if you can't find one in your area, have honey shipped to you.

07-26-2004, 12:59 PM
I agree with Norskersword.

I just purchased a bunch of Orange Blossom Honey from Miller's Honey here in Colton, CA. Excellent honey and very reasonable prices.

Also, for those of you in So Cal there is an excellent homebrew/mead supply store in Riverside called More Beer:


They had all the Lalvin yeasts in stock in the store. I was impressed by their inventory on hand in the store too. Good people, and good pricing.


07-29-2004, 02:31 AM
Yeah same goes for North California. More Beer has a shop here in Concord. I really like their place and their selection. They say that 90% of their business is on the internet but I am very fortunate to have the story so close to me rather than pay for shipping and stuff.

09-13-2004, 03:33 PM
more beer is great.. but i won't buy any more beer kits form them... other then that they are great!!!
I have ordered by net and have talked to people there by phone. they are very knowledgeable. There catalog is the best i have ever seen.
And orders over $50 (which isn't hard to do) Has free shipping!!!!!! So I know thier not paying me but
you won't be sorry, unless you get a beer kit...lol