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Caerwyn
09-28-2004, 01:21 AM
I have a quick question. I've been enjoying this site for some time, and have my first batch of mead brewing.

And, I have a few questions.

the mead I am making (I got from another site, sorry!) is:

3 lbs honey
Zest of one lemon (which was a pain to slice off!)
1 tablespoon strong brewed tea
1/4 tsp grape tannin
1 tsp yeast energizer
1 packet Lalvin 1116 yeast
one gallon of water.

It's been bubbling for over a month now, and I recently racked it for the first time (not counting the first plastic bucket to the glass carboy once it was cool enough to not shatter the glass!).

It was exactly one month from pitching the yeast, and the bubbling had already dropped of a lot. Now, it's not bubbling at all. I don't have a hydrometer, so I can't tell if it is actually done, or the yeast is taking its damn sweet time to do a secondary fermentation 'happy yeastie dance' (as my kids call it). Could I have killed them or something?

The second question is that there is a thin 'film' on the top. I was assuming that was just particles that were brought to the surface with a bubble, and are light enough to not break the surface tension of the liquid, and will eventually settle out. I'm just tired of my wife calling it 'pond scum.'

Thanks for the help, and for having a great site!

Caerwyn

Jmattioli
09-28-2004, 01:46 AM
No, At 1 month with K1V-1116 it should be done. Mine typically finishes in 3 weeks. Taste it if you have no hydrometer. If it is not sweet, it is done.
Don't worry about the pond scum especially when using zest. It is probably just lemon oil mixed with other byproducts of lemon peel and honey, all of which are harmless. Leave it when you rack a final time.
Joe

ThistyViking
09-28-2004, 02:45 AM
I have a quick question. I've been enjoying this site for some time, and have my first batch of mead brewing.

And, I have a few questions.

the mead I am making (I got from another site, sorry!) is:

3 lbs honey
Zest of one lemon (which was a pain to slice off!)
1 tablespoon strong brewed tea
1/4 tsp grape tannin
1 tsp yeast energizer
1 packet Lalvin 1116 yeast
one gallon of water.



Hmmm if you mean water to make one gallon total vollume.. then i would expect residual sweetness from K1-v1116
If you made it with 1 gallon of water added you might get to dry.

Lalvin may also have another 1116 that i am less familiar with.


Lalvin says k1-v1116 is good for 12-14% with some occasional claims by people that it went to 16+ ...

In my experience I get fairly consistent 12.5% ABV results.

Typical finish time is 3-4 weeks and i don't use the level of nutrients you put in. I expect the yeast is done. the bubbling stopped because when racking the excess CO2 was agitated and escaped from the super saturated solution... like when you shake a Coke. Even if it wasn't finished ... a delay before bubbles began again would not be unexpected after racking.. anywhere from 2 hours to a couple days.

Caerwyn
09-28-2004, 04:53 AM
one gallon total volume. When I tasted it, it was a touch sweet, and notably alcoholic. I am assuming that was my first 'honey gasoline' experience! :)

It's been about 4 days, so I wasn't sure if it was done or not. I know it takes a little while for them to 'regroup' for another go at fermenting.

It's dropped semi-clear, and still tossing sediment. It was opaque, now its more translucent. Can't see through it clearly yet, but from what I've read I am not too worried about it. I was planning on letting it sit until at least december 1st before bottling.

Thanks everyone!

Caerwyn

PS: Hi! :)

Jmattioli
09-28-2004, 04:59 AM
Intersting Thirsty Viking. I noticed Lalvin changed their chart a few months back:
http://consumer.lallemand.com/danstar-lalvin/refchart.html
K1V is good to 18% ABV on the chart.
I suspect it stops early on you because of the nutrients.
My experiements with my tap water show it will go dry 1.000 or less when Fermax is used but will stop at 1.030 without any nutrients or go to 1.014 with 1/8t magnesium. Honey was just shy of 3 lbs/gallon.
Regards Joe

ThistyViking
09-28-2004, 05:01 AM
I would probably rack it once more about the 10 of november.
If you are in a hurry ... put in a refrigerator on the 7th until you rack it on the tenth. This is called cold stabilization and sediment will drop faster.


Should be a nice layer of sediment at that time, and will reduce the amount that could end up in your bottles.

then watch your mead around dec 1st and judge by the clarity and sediment if it is time to bottle or if it need racking again. Given time Gravity is a wonderful Clearing Agent.